A Fine Line: The Ancients (Part I)

Young Adult

DARK FANTASY:  “A Fine Line: The Ancients, Part I” is the second book in the “A Fine Line” series, a historical fantasy novel.  The Crew is a ‘family’ of gifted individuals who fight against their kind, who have given into the darkness and have become the Damned.  They live/work together, fighting side by side as immortals, although they can be killed.  They encounter a Damned, more powerful than ever before; and connected to the Ancients. The Crew will be tested in ways that will change everything irrevocably.

“A Fine Line: The Ancients, Part I” is a novel with interesting concepts but poor execution.  This book suffers from the issue of telling without showing.  What endows The Crew with their abilities is nebulously developed, leaving the reader confused.  Another issue is inconsistent tone--long periods where the story doesn’t progress interspersed with scenes of shocking violence.  Overall, this novel is very melodramatic, but lacks the good kind of tension that seduces a reader.  The action scenes feel awkward and lifeless due to the passive point of view the narrative utilizes, while disturbingly violent.

The lead characters are developed inconsistently. Although some characters, such as William, their de facto leader, are given emotional depth, others feel two-dimensional, despite the terrible things that happen to them. The villains are barely developed at all.  With stronger writing and editing, “A Fine Line: The Ancients, Part I” has the potential to be an interesting historical fantasy novel in a series that readers will want to follow.

Danielle Hill