Book 1 of Seluna
by Ilana Waters
"Almost everyone is convinced I’m mad. But I’m not sure I believe them."
Seventeen-year-old Seluna doesn’t know why she was admitted to an all-female insane asylum called Silver Hill. She doesn’t know exactly how she makes inanimate objects come to life. And she can’t figure out the reason for the sadistic and brutal experiments on girls here—many of whom are never heard from again.
When Seluna sneaks out to the moonlit, forbidden garden behind Silver Hill, she meets a mysterious boy swimming in a pond. She senses there’s a connection between him and what’s happening at the asylum, but he’s not telling what. Then there are the screams from down long halls and the constant absence of light. No doubt they’re all part of the scheme concocted by the merciless head of the facility, Dr. Catron. He’s growing more and more frantic and violent in an attempt to find the person—or thing—he’s looking for.
Yes, there’s a lot Seluna doesn’t know about Silver Hill. About why moonlight, madness, and murder are following her. But she needs to find out fast . . . before she becomes the next victim.
(Set in the nineteenth century of an alternate world called Hartlandia, APPROACHING NIGHT is a YA gothic, paranormal fantasy).
I enjoyed this the moment I had the chance to beta it, so my opinion might be a bit biased. But here are my thoughts and the reasons I'm a Seluna fan.
This is a darker story set in a place screaming with creepy possibilities--an asylum, and one with tons of secrets and eerie characters.
The main character is a seventeen year old girl named Seluna, who isn't quite sure why she got stuck in the dismal institute. She's an easy character to sympathize with, not only because of her situation, but despite everything, she's pretty level-headed. She has 'talents' but isn't stupid enough to let the world know about it, and she's not the type to believe everything anyone tells her. Of course, she makes a few bad decisions and has a couple of quirks, but it's exactly this type of thing which makes her more realistic.
The setting in this book sent chills down my spine. The descriptions picked out the right amount of detail to let me sink into Seluna's world and feel the icy shadows. The deeper one gets into the book, the more unsettling the world becomes. And that's perfect.
I really enjoyed the other characters as well. Each has their very own personality and ticks. Even with their oddities, they grew on me. This made the story that much more heart-wrenching when the plot starts to thicken.
This isn't only about creepiness, though. Like a sprinkle of fairy dust, fantasy dances around the edges adding a touch of brightness and hope to off-set the weight of the rest of the plot. As things blacken over into evil pure, this tiny touch is what I found makes the story so alluring, especially since there were times that the layers of dark secrets really piled up. It's not clear who Seluna should trust and the tension of whether or not she'll make it safely through, mounts with every page.
I recommend this to fans of slightly darker stories, ones who still love a bit of fairies, magic and other pieces of fantasy. And although this does work as a stand alone, I can't wait to see where all of this takes Seluna next.
And the best part???
A little mouse told me that book two won't take long to hit the shelves, so there will be more about Seluna soon.