Kennar Chasny

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Carlton: Downsized
Pacific Book Review

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Memories are a funny thing. They can be gateways to a cherished moment in our past. They can be painful reminders of those we’ve lost. They can be manipulated or forgotten. Yet no matter what the memory, they are a part of us all. As Jeremy Irons once said, “We all have our time machines. Some take us back, they’re called memories. Some take us forward, they’re called dreams.”

In author Tawnee Chasny’s Carlton: Down Sized, the author explores the story of a young man named Carlton, who awakes after a terrible event with no memory of who he is or what happened to him. After some locals in an Oregon town help him on the road to recovery and he befriends two sisters with a unique gift, Carlton begins to discover he has come into contact with a dangerous group of escaped convicts, one of which is far deadlier than the others. He will need the help of his new friends in order to not only survive the ruthless criminals, but to stop them before they can escape once more.

The author does a phenomenal job of character development within such a short narrative. The reader is instantly enraptured by the story of Carlton, who finds himself trapped at first in a series of hallucinations after some sort of terrible accident. Carlton’s recovery as he struggles with a lack of identity or memory creates a compelling and memorable protagonist, while the shift towards the dangerous criminals, including a monster who commits brutal crimes, is a stark yet engaging contrast to Carl’s character arc overall. Twin’s Ruby and Crystal are a couple of great supporting characters, as their gift for vibrations and sensing things tap into a more natural form of a supernatural element in this narrative, making for some fun and entertaining background for the world the author has created.

This is the perfect read for those who enjoy drama, action and adventure, fiction that delves into themes of memory and identity, and short fictional narratives overall. As a fan of the genres, I was easily invested and entertained by Carlton’s story, as the author utilized character growth to flesh out the narrative overall within a short span of time. The nail-biting twists and turns keep the reader on their toes as events transpire that put our heroes in far more danger than they could have realized.

A memorable, entertaining and powerful character-driven narrative, author Tawnee Chasny’s Carlton: Down Sized,  is a must-read fictional tale like no other. The author creates a protagonist with a memorable and interesting character arc, and by the books end readers will be clamoring to read about how Carlton’s story wraps up.

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