Summary: Winged is a novella a coming of age story about two girls growing up and learning to fly. Literally.
Likes: The premise sounds interesting. I don’t read a lot of steampunk, so I don’t know how unique this premise is to the genre, but it’s relatively new to me. The most interesting part to me and what pulled me in for a while was the character Alethia who was blind, saw voices in colors, and was training to be an air traffic controller. What’s not to love about that? The other character, Katherine, was the main character and she came with her own challenges. Something is wrong with her ankle and it prevents her from keeping up with the other students. These are not spoilers, but unique things that I think make the story. I didn’t get a chance to read the other one unfortunately.
Dislikes: I hate to say it, but it was bland. As other reviewers have mentioned, there is a lot of “telling” and “not showing.” It took me a while to get into the story and once it did take off, it lost me by the third chapter. I pushed through it and made it to chapter six. Things were happening too fast and characterization was lost. The formatting was strange and there was so much head hopping that I never got a sense of any of the characters or what was happening around them.
Overall: It has a really strong premise, but I don’t think the writing does the story justice. The story definitely has potential, but it needs just a bit more work to get it to where it needs to be as far as characterization and story telling is concerned. I really really wanted to like this story, but I found it hard to keep going. In it’s essence it has the potential to be a unique story with fully-fleshed out but flawed characters within a dynamic world. This story could use a lot of work and perhaps if the author published in a serialized format, readers may be willing to come along for the ride to getting this story to it’s full potential.