City of Day by October K. Santerelli is filled with mystery, thrill, and a fantasy world that gets more and more interesting as the story goes on. Thislen is a survivor and a thief who holds a lot of secrets close to his heart. After missing a boat and left to fend for himself from the Vaim, his life takes a turn that he never expected. He is taken to the Ominir Apothecary after the talons of the black ghostly figures pierced his skin, and Olen and his daughter Mila take care of him. Thistlen feels the need to pay the Ominirs back for saving his life, but his decision to help Mila avoid marriage to an arrogant lord becomes more and more complicated. He is forced to reveal some of his secrets and finds out about the secrets that are held by the Ominir family. As secrets unfold, the city of Astera and the abandoned kingdom of Perilee unfold with them.
The descriptions used throughout this book made everything feel more real. Phrases like “ran as quick as lighting struck,” “wrapping his cloak around him as if it sought to comfort him in his final moments” when describing the wind, and “as the shadow of the wall swallowed him,” showed off Santerelli’s mastery with prose. The main pretense of this novel is a slow reveal of one secret after another and the more the readers know, the more intense Thislen’s situation gets, especially when Mila and Lord Soren Bestant step into the picture. Leading the reader deeper into this fantasy world, Santerelli tells a story of family and love, abandonment and fear, and making the distinction between right and wrong when it comes to the ones you care about. Filled with mysteries and secrets, City of Day, is the story of one who is content in his loneliness finding his way back into the grasp of society and I can’t wait to see where this story goes in the next book.
Thesis Note: This book has two main points of view with Thislen and Mila. In the middle of chapters, there are a few breaks where the perspective changes and it sets up the story well, especially when the two characters are separated from one another. For my book, my two main characters are with each other the majority of the time, but I can use these chapter splits to show the perspective of both of my characters. Also, I currently have five points of view, and this book made me want to push it down into three instead. I can just focus on the main characters and let the side characters be side characters.
Check out October K. Santerelli’s work here!