RUNNING FROM SECRETS by Stephanie Void
Publisher: Silver Glass Press
Released: January 2010
Review format: Kindle Edition (with thanks to the author)
Bethany has never felt as alone as she feels in Linwood—until she dreams up Chime, a woman on the run because of a magic crime she didn’t commit. The dreams get more and more urgent, so Bethany tries to banish them by writing them down, only to discover she’s stumbled into the role of unwitting controller of Chime’s world.
Chime is real here, and so is the possessed queen, minion army, mysterious professor, Vault Five, wind chimes with a secret code, child’s rhyme that can kill, the naked painting, and other things Chime’s story leads her to.
She has to fix the story without erasing Chime and her world, because if she erases Chime, she will die as well.
Synopsis from Goodreads
Running from Secrets reminded me in some ways of The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe with its contemporary/fantasy genre crossover. The story is about Bethany whose family have recently moved to Linwood, a small town surrounded by forest which some of the locals say is haunted. Bethany is a twin and the first chapter tells how her sister, Antonia, dies in a car accident and how her family are coping with their sad loss. It’s during this time that Bethany starts to have strange dreams about a land called New Velerethland which she writes down in her notebook. Bethany soon discovered that she’s not just noting down her dreams, she’s actually creating the land and the characters and it’s becoming part of her.
I loved Bethany’s imagination and the story she created. Whilst in her fantasy land, Bethany changes from geeky girl to kick-ass heroine saving the land of New Velerethland from certain demise. The characters Bethany creates are pretty awesome. There’s Chime, the main character in New Velerethland who is on the run from her cousin, the Queen of New Velerethland who wants her dead. We also meet a faun called David, a nasty Dark Lord and evil teachers. I enjoyed watching Bethany work out what she had to write next, or how she had to design a certain place so her beloved characters would survive, but my favourite parts where when Bethany was in New Velerethland and working alongside the characters she created.
Running from Secrets was a really quick read and only took me a couple of evenings to finish. Maybe that’s because the story was so fast paced that I couldn’t put it down!
In a way I am quite sad that this is a standalone novel as I would have loved more adventures with Bethany and Chime. Would I recommend this book? Yes! It’s the perfect quick read for those times when you’re looking for something a bit different.
My rating: 4 stars