As Charlotte steps through the gate, she has a strong feeling that nothing will ever be the same again
Moving back to South Carolina after three years away, Charlotte knows she's going to have to face people from her past and adjust to a new high school, but she's completely unprepared for what else waits for her in Charleston.
Drawn through an old garden gate, Charlotte discovers a hidden world where she meets Calvin, a boy to whom she is inexplicably attracted. As Charlotte is pulled deeper into this hidden world, it's up to her older brother Kevin to rescue her. No matter how hard Kevin tries, the rescue depends upon Charlotte fighting her intense feelings for Calvin while mastering a set of abilities that she has only just discovered she possesses.
Beckoning Light is one of Alyssa Rose Ivy's earlier books and it's more of a YA read since our heroine is just turning sixteen. It was an interesting read but some things were a bit weird to me. I guess it was the whole other world just on the other side of a locked gate that threw me. We didn't really get to learn much about the history of it all, but I am hoping more of that will be explained in the next two books.
Charlotte and her brother are moving back to Charleston to live with their uncle while their father is being moved to the Arctic, or some such far away and deserted place. Charlotte is happy to be retuning to her childhood home, as it's been three years since she's lived there. But on her first day of school, she meets James, and it's from there when things really start to get weird. James seems familiar to her somehow. She can't figure out if she's ever met him before, and he's almost too cryptic with his charm. He's not creepy, but you definitely get the sense that he knows more than he's telling.
Charlotte has always been a quite sort of girl, shy for the most part. And in this I can totally relate to her. Her older brother, Kevin, has always looked out for her and continues to do so in this book. The book is told through both Charlotte and Kevin's point of views, but with more emphasis on Charlotte.
Charlotte's always had a fascination with the locked gate in her yard. She was always told never to open it, but since it was locked it wasn't an issue. Then she finds her mother's necklace--who had passed away a few years ago--and it just so happens to have a key on it. Naturally, Charlotte uses the key to open the gate and she discovers, quite literally, a whole new world on the other side. Energo is not like any place she's ever seen before. What the place is, is still bit of a mystery. I want to say it's something related to the fey, but that doesn't feel quite accurate. It's definitely mystical and mysterious to say the least.
Her first encounter is with a buy named Calvin and it's a straight on insta love situation. There's kissing and loving and use of the "L" word, but there's a reason behind that, which I won't really get into. But it's because of that reason, I am left wondering, is this love real then? Charlotte seems to think so, but as a reader, it feels so false. Especially when there seemed to be possible love connections with James, the odd boy, and Liam, her brother's best friend from childhood who she happened to kiss once three years ago. Needless to say it was an embarrassing situation for her. So with all that in mind, I can't help but feel that Calvin might not be her one. It's an almost sickening display of romance in a sense, but again, there's a reason behind it all. One that almost makes it seem unreal despite what the other characters are saying. So with that little mystery behind the romance, I'll move on!
Before she knows it, Charlotte finds herself a prisoner of sorts to this new land. One that her mother was strongly connected to. There's so much mystery behind this place, it kind of drove me nuts! I wanted to know more about the place, who these people were, what are they?! And it seems everyone has a hidden agenda, ones that involve Charlotte for their own gain. It'll be up to Charlotte and her family to get her out of this. And that's another thing I enjoyed, the strong familial bonds Charlotte had with her brother and uncle. It was nice to see that in a YA novel, as these days, the heroines usually end up doing everything alone with no parental guidance at all.
Despite having a few issues with the worldbuilding and development, this was still a very good read. It was engaging and mysterious and I liked that! I liked seeing Charlotte's character grow. She seem to gain more confidence in herself. I am really curious to see where this series will go, there's still so much I need to know about the world in which Charlotte visited, the connections to her family, and of course seeing through to the aftermath of that jawdropping ending!
It was yet another highly enjoyable read from the mind of Alyssa Rose Ivy, so you know by now, I totally recommend it!
Overall Rating 3.75/5 stars--not quite 4, just because I felt I needed to know more about this world in which Charlotte visited! Hopefully more will be explained in the next two books! But it was still an incredible read that I highly recommend!