Friday, September 28, 2012

Review: Redwoodian by Alysia Gray Painter

Redwoodian: Wilfair Book 2
Redwoodian, (by Alysia Gray Painter) in short:
A late-blooming nineteen-year-old visits her family's mountain lodge with her cute, motel-running neighbors. A strange building follows them, there's some romantic bickering and a cozy camp-out, and the hotel heiress takes a stand on a life-changing issue.

Redwoodian, in long:
Hotel heiress Fair Finley must steal a motel and its pool from Monty and Gomery Overbove, her handsome, friendly neighbors. But places are changing places with other places and the world is going weird, and only the cousins' moms can help. Fair, the guys, and her best friend Sutton leave LA and make for the Sierra Nevada mountains in order to find the ladies. Their journey is not easy.

Problem one? A large, underground building is hot on the group's tail. Problems two and three? Fair's favorite movie star shows up in the mountains, as does her longtime rival, and neither will stay out of her snooded hair. Then there's the curious inky taste in air at The Redwoodian. Ick.

But the biggest issue of all? Fair's desire to toss the kindly cousins out of their motel home continues to falter. Fail, really. Kaput.

If the young hotelier doesn't steal the little motel and its pool then Thurs Mathers, the crisp-shirted tycoon of front-page fame, will snatch her hotel and fast. Meaning she can't get any closer to the cousins, and Gomery in particular. Because getting involved with someone you're trying to finish off? Bad idea. Especially when the person you're trying to finish off isn't exactly stopping you. Especially when he's kind of helping. (Good Reads)

Originality: 10. AGP has painted a zany world unlike any other. Redwoodian refines and highlights this world.  And the character’s interactions feel earnest, funny, and very real, which helped me accept the magical realism aspect.
Absurdity: 10. Did you read about the buildings switching places!? And Fair runs crazy themed hotels. And the air tastes weird and people are missing and ghosts are misbehaving. But AGP brings the absurdity on purpose and I found it delightful.
Level of Paranormal Romance: 7. This book packs the swoon, which is pretty epic considering kisses have not yet even been exchanged. The Overbove cousins are undeniably dreamy--forearms have never been more attractive. By page 200 I was literally talking to my book, rooting for romance.  (PS if you count the “intimate” relations between the Overbove’s van and the mystery underground building as romance, this score skyrockets to a 18.)
Level of Harry Potter-ness: 7. This book charmed me. The quirkiness of Wilfair the first book in the series (see my review here) has been tempered and fine-tuned. Everyone is still wacky, but it is pure fun. I cannot wait to find out what happens next. There is so much more to learn about the emerging magical pattern.


  1. Wait... the building STALKS them? Or rather... the BUILDING stalks them? WTF.... Intrigued....

  2. YES! there is some kind of space-time continuum that is messed up, and buildings are moving around and appearing where they should not be. crazy but fun!


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