“Where Acorns Landed” is literary fantasy with an absurdist fiction flare. Meshing Celtic Mythology with Arthurian Legend, and sprinkled with supernatural elements, the reader follows Lowell and Brighid as they navigate loss, and new beginnings, all while clinging almost too tightly to a sense of normalcy. Under the guise of making a documentary, Lowell and Brighid are thrust together just in time to see their corner of the world succumb to a plethora of supernatural sightings. Neither Lowell nor Brighid know who is orchestrating their mystery project, one that seems impossibly linked to their lives, which gives this novel a dark, and sinister vibe to it that I rather enjoyed. Readers will be kept guessing and in the dark about what is happening and why all the way to the end—just like the main characters.
The author does a lovely job crafting the fantasy world with a truly avant garde flare. The world is vivid and visceral, where often I felt like I could taste, feel, and see all the things our characters were experiencing. The writing is smart, and uses prose in a truly masterful way. The whole reading experience is very imaginative and poetic, with a dark mystery that made me so intrigued and desperate to know what was happening and why were Lowell and Brighid chosen, and what, exactly, was up with Lowell’s mysterious radio and all these intense dreams both characters had. Unfortunately, the book never did give me that moment of clarity, where all these different strings came together cohesively.
This very well may just be a "me" problem, but despite the lovely writing and the basic understanding that these characters were going through devastating losses, I can’t tell you much about what this story was about, or even what really happened. There was a lot going on with the fantastic, supernatural elements in the larger world with hints of various mythologies coming to life. It distorts reality for the reader, which was great, but I never felt like it came back around and truly solidified what the mystery was, or why it was happening in the first place, or what was even real. That’s why I say that this book had that absurdist flare mixed in with its literary fantasy. I think I just needed more answers from the story to help me understand what I just read better, which is why I’m giving it 3 stars. But if you are a fan of literary fantasy with flavors of sinister, absurdist fiction, definitely give this a try! And thanks to the author for sending me a copy for an honest review.
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