Title – Author: Echo – Alicia Wright Brewster
Publisher: Dragonfairy Press
Release Date: April 25, 2013
Format – How I Got It: e-ARC – Publisher via Edelweiss
The world is going to end in ten days. The problem is, no one knows how it’s going to end. To figure out a solution, the Council has called in as many practitioners are possible: people who can command air, fire, earth, water, or ether. Hopefully together they can figure out a solution. Ashara is assigned to the Ethereal task force, headed by her ex-boyfriend Loken. As if that doesn’t make the situation complicated enough, Ashara never knew she was an Ethereal until she got her assignment. The rest of her task force can manipulate ether, but she doesn’t know what’s she’s doing. Then it comes to light that energy-hungry Mages, practitioners who were consumed by their power and turned into something less human, are all converging on the city where the Council and practitioners have gathered. Ashara may be the key to stopping them…or she may be the cause of the end of the world.
The summary on Goodreads doesn’t really do justice to the situation in this world. Without getting too spoilery, there are alternate timelines. Guys, I can’t tell you how much I love stories with time manipulation. I just find it so freaking cool. What originally sparked my interest was the fact that the people of this world can command the elements. It’s no secret that I’m freaking obsessed with Avatar: The Last Airbender. While this story is completely different from A:tLA, I still can’t get enough of working with elements. Combine element manipulation with time manipulation and I was totally hooked from the start.
Ashara is a kickass heroine. When she finds out she’s an Ethereal, and when working with ether doesn’t come easily to her, she doesn’t cry about it or complain. She just works harder because she knows how necessary it is that she learns and helps fight whatever threat will possibly make the world end. And when she finds out she’s potentially dangerous, she doesn’t hide or give up. She keeps fighting to find a solution to the world’s problems. I also liked her cousin, Rey, and her ex, Loken.
My only complaint is with some of the logic and some of the worldbuilding. The Council’s actions towards Ashara are at times confusing and not really logical. As for the worldbuilding, like I said earlier, I really liked some elements. What I kept thinking was that I wished there was more. I wanted to know more about the mages. There’s also religious conflict, with some people believing that the two suns are gods and that faith in the gods makes elemental abilities stronger. I would’ve really liked more exploration of that aspect of the story, too.
Echo is a quick, fun story in an interesting sci-fi world.