As a fellow author, I tend to find the world building, character development, and pacing make or break a book for me. As such, I focus my reviews in these areas. With that said, here are my opinions on this book:
Though there are quite a few scenes with elements of the world highlighted, I cannot honestly say there was much in the way of actual world building. It is definitely a fantasy setting – beyond the races and species presented in the cast – but not much else really comes to light. Mostly, what the world is develops out of what the world is NOT, though the lack of actual development does not cause the story to feel shallow or whimsical at all.
The cast is deftly developed as they are introduced – each one is given a nice silhouette for the rest of the story to refine into a believable person. The refinement is highly depending on the screen time, and importance of the character to the scene in which they are introduced – some that appear for a scene, or two, are highly refined. Others are left as background shadows – useful to fill in scenes, but not fully fleshed in. (Almost like an inverse bas-relief carving.) It is an interesting technique to keep the reader turning the pages – you wonder what new contours will be revealed when the action shifts to shine new light angels into the characters you have begun to know.
The pacing was spot on for Aaspa’s Eyes. I felt no sense of time dilation or compression as I read through. Even with a couple of the more bucolic scenes where a sense of lag could have crept in, there was enough going on elsewhere to keep driving the story forward.
If Aaspa was human, having blue eyes wouldn't matter. But she isn't, so it does. And when she finds out how she came by the colour it rocks the foundations of her world. Can she emerge from the web of spite and rumour with her head held high? Or will her enemies manage to use the secret to lever her over the edge into insanity?