Clotho’s Loom is not for everyone–at 205,000 words, it’s twice as long as the average $16.00 novel on the shelves. So not every casual reviewer actually finishes it. And as pro writer stressed, it stretches the vocabulary–though this used to be quite normal for works in the genre of literary fiction. So here’s what some careful readers had to say:
Or, if you don’t feel like leaving this site, check out Rachel’s review from Barnes and Noble .com:
“This book is quite an achievement. St. Jean doesn’t shy away from reinventing archetypes; tossing tried-and-true formulas out the window; disregarding standard advice given to emerging novelists. The result is highly intellectual and emotionally gripping.
At the beginning, I thought the book was going to be about some kind of higher reality, an archetypal hero’s journey. But the level of detail the author gives about the daily lives and thoughts of the characters keeps the story grounded in realism.
Then again, ordinary reality doesn’t prevent the characters from rubbing elbows with gods, or other beings who seem to have supernatural connections, at the very least. Ultimately I think the book can be read as an archetypal hero’s journey- but with both a hero and a heroine, on different kinds of journeys; or it can be taken at face value, and read as straight realism, with perhaps a few magic-realism-style elements thrown into the mix. Considering the various situations both Will and Nexus find themselves in, I found the book to be surprisingly, consistently believable.
The action accelerates as the story progresses; St. Jean quite skillfully builds tension to an unexpected climax, even with profound ambiguity. (Did that really happen? Or was it a hallucination? We’ll never know . . .) By the end, I couldn’t put it down, and was reading as fast as I could, just to find out what would come next.
As for the rating, I’m torn. I usually reserve five stars for books about which I have nothing negative to say; though there were a few issues, most notably that I didn’t find all of Nexus’s imperatives to be really imperative, and I didn’t quite understand all her choices. Still, what the author does achieve is so much more ambitious and masterful than most of the books I’ve given four stars. Either way, I highly recommend it. It’s probably not for everyone, but if you like your books to be meaty and challenging, you won’t be disappointed.”