By Julia Highes
Available for Kindle
Reviewed by Nash Black (Amazon vine voice reviewer)
There are certain ingredients a story needs to make it better than just good. If any author can gather these ingredients and blend them seamlessly together, then they are always on to a winner.
For me, this is my first step into the world created by author Julia Hughes, a world that revolves around two teenage boys - Wren, the geeky brainbox and his cousin Rhyllann, a pilot wannabe and Wren's best friend. Add to this, Crombie, the copper and oft self-appointed social worker, the lost treasure (a treasure that includes the fabled sword of Arthurian legend - Excalibur) of King John, and a gang of villains who will stop at nothing - including murder - to retrieve said treasure and you have a story that takes all of those ingredients, lovingly mixes them together and creates a wonderful story.
Most authors would have been very happy with the fact they had created a `wonderful' story. But no. Not this author. If ever writing a novel can be compared to creating a meal, then Ms. Hughes grabbed all those correct ingredients and then, when no-one was looking, slipped in an extra, secret one that a lot of other stories lack, and created something very special. That special ingredient is - for want of a better word - love. Love of the story, love of her characters. Love of her ART. Because that's what storytelling is. It's an art and Julia Hughes is one hell of an artist!
This is a story that defies genre. It cannot be labelled as simply an adventure story, or a teen angst story, a thriller or a comedy. It is all of these and more. It made me laugh out loud; it made me turn pages (well push buttons - on kindle) at speed to see what came next. There is a section of the book that in a summer (July 2012) that has had torrential rainfall here in the UK; you will feel a particular kinship with the boys. I know I did.
The author has created believable characters that you will love from the off. Her storytelling is tight and flows seamlessly from start to finish. Her descriptive style pulls your imagination along and paints the places and people so vividly, they will stay in your mind long after you have closed the book or switched off your kindle.
The good news is that there two other stories featuring the characters you meet in `Raucous Time'. `A Ripple in Time' & `An Explosive Time'. I have just started `Ripple' and can already announce that I love it.
Make a note of the name Julia Hughes because in literary terms, it's a name I'm sure we're going to hear a lot of in the future and genuinely cannot wait!!!
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