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Liz Harper
Kill Your Darlings
L.E. Harper, author
INCEPTION meets INKHEART in this allegorical epic. A depressed fantasy author writes a dark ending to her story, killing her beloved characters. When she awakes and finds herself magically trapped in their world, she must fight to change the fatal finale. Trading her pen for a sword, she sets out to defeat the insidious villain who feeds on blood and dreams—but if she can’t overcome her inner darkness, she’ll die with her darlings.
Plot/Idea: 9 out of 10
Originality: 9 out of 10
Prose: 9 out of 10
Character/Execution: 8 out of 10
Overall: 8.75 out of 10


Plot/Idea: This engaging, riveting fantasy novel is not only about the power of storytelling, but it is also a moving allegory about the struggle of mental illness. When the novel switches between the “real” and “fantasy” worlds it is very compelling, but some transitions can be jarring.

Prose: Harper is a very talented writer, and the prose is evocative and captivating. The dialogue is energetic and charming, and proves to be the greatest strengths of the novel.

Originality: The plot is highly original, particularly in the manner that it takes established tropes and subverts them in clever, meaningful ways.

Character/Execution: The narrator's emotional arc is the core of the novel, and it rightly takes center stage, which leads to some of the minor characters lacking in their own emotional arcs. Other than that, they are well drawn and fascinating.

Originality: An author’s dreamworld quickly becomes a nightmare when she wakes up in a world of her own creation, distraught to find that not only are her characters real, but are in desperate need of saving.

Date Submitted: April 03, 2023