Rating: 4 / 5
I received DOWN WORLD by Rebecca Phelps in my YA Once Upon a Book Club box. This is a book I wasn’t at all familiar with before the book hint came out, but it definitely sounded like my kind of read!
DOWN WORLD follows Marina, a new girl attending the school where her older brother Robbie went before his horrifying and unexplained death. The school is built in what used to be a military base and there are rumors about the “DW” that immediately have Marina intrigued. Her crush is an upperclassman who seems to know the secrets behind the school’s mysteries, but he’s reluctant to let her in and her brother’s best friend (and accused killer) seems even more insistent that she not get involved.
It turns out the initials are for Down World, alternate plane of reality that one can access through secret doors. The problem is that interaction between the worlds has slowly been throwing everything out out of sync and what begins as minor glitches is quickly escalating. Marina can’t help but hope that there are answers to what happened to her bother behind those doors, but can she retrieve them without causing further harm?
I do love a good book that plays with alternate lives and different realities. With one changed decision what could have gone differently? It was a lot of fun to explore this with Marina as she begins to see what might have been! With different characters revealed to have different motives, the characters are caught up in the shifting reality. I thought the author did a good job of helping the reader keep things straight as the story went along.
There are a lot of mysteries to uncover and overlapping realities to figure out which I found really enjoyable. I wasn’t entirely sold on the ending and even now a while later as I’m writing this review, I’m still not sure if I felt entirely satisfied. Even so, this was a fun read and one that I flew through which is always a good sign! I would absolutely pick up more from this author!
This was a fun read of a book that I wouldn’t have likely ever picked up without this subscription. Use my code DGREADS10 for 10% off your order if you’re interested in giving this box a try!