Stories from the Age of Distraction: The Island by Patricia Mahon
A story with a central theme that appeals to many a writer, which is maintaining the tradition of storytelling. Such a grand theme often inspires, but often gets a little carried away with itself.
The main characters cling heavily to the themes belief and the interplay is well conceived. However the initial setup is far from believable and seems to be the fantasy of the characters taking real life form.
Starting off like a thesis or debate it can feel a little self-righteous. Once the arguments and debate are exhausted the story takes off as the trials of the main character and their integrity is further tested.
There are beautiful moments of highly descriptive narrative that wander and drift. Sometimes being eloquent and at other times being slightly predictable.
Often it feels like too much is going on, which is almost a metaphor for the creative mind. While enjoying the development of characters, I am suddenly transported to a very different narrative. Though this can be good when handled delicately, personally it disrupted the flow for me.
In summary there is much to admire in this story with an obvious talent behind the piece. An entertaining tale that could be more with some finer editing.