Kirkus Review

So on a courage-filled whim, I submitted my new novel, From A Youth A Fountain Did Flow to Kirkus Reviews.

I thought I’d share the review with y’all. Give it a like and consider buying my new book!


Our Verdict

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by Miranda Levi ‧ RELEASE DATE: March 9, 2023

Pursued by demons, a teenage girl must confront darkness and a terrible destiny in Levi’s YA fantasy novel.

In Washington State,17-year-old Scarlet Singer is haunted by nightmarish shadows and a feeling of wrongness. Her bad dreams come true when her home is invaded by a monster in the guise of a man. Her mother sacrifices herself to give her daughter time to escape, and a teenage telepath named Marcus Castillo is drawn to Scarlet, sensing her distress. His grandmother, a witch named Kara, accompanies him and slaughters the demonic killer with magic, and Scarlet’s perception of reality is forever changed (“I know magic isn’t real, and demons are like fairytales designed to scare children. Except, I am now swayed to the argument that demons are real, and magic seems to exist despite my reservations”). Packed with demons, humans reduced to “meat suits,” blood-letting and blood-drinking, witches, telepathy, time-shifting, and supernatural realms reachable through magic portals, the novel is never dull. The abundance of fantasy and horror tropes could have been overkill, but the author weaves them into a neat twist on the concepts of the fountain of youth and reincarnation. The catalyst is the 19th-century journal of a young woman named Kelby, which causes Scarlet, sheltered by a powerful Witches Council, to begin to wonder who—and what—she is, leaving her with a secret she can’t share, hunted by demons and ostensible friends alike. Throughout, Scarlet’s closeness to Witches Council members Marcus and the handsome Zig complicates things. Scarlet cares for besotted Marcus but resents his protectiveness and ability to read her thoughts. She is attracted to Zig but put off by his and Marcus’ jealous competitiveness over her. (In the face of horrific occurrences and constant danger, this prolonged, adolescent dynamic among the three grows a bit tiresome.) The author effectively keeps the plot moving forward by shifting narratives between Scarlet, Marcus, Zig, Kelby’s journal, an enigmatic witch named Azeltha, Scarlet’s demonic nemesis, Dagon, and a few minor but essential characters. The shocker of a cliffhanger at the end signals a sequel to come. An imaginative fantasy-horror tale anchored by a relatable teen hero, engaging despite a surfeit of adolescent angst.

Pub Date: March 9, 2023

ISBN: 9798376885062

Page Count: 425

Publisher: Independently Published

Review Posted Online: March 24, 2023

Review Program: Kirkus Indie



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