Review Detail

A Straw Man Featured
Young Adult Indie 944
Struggle and Heartache
Overall rating 
 
4.5
Writing Style 
 
5.0
Plot/Story 
 
5.0
Illustrations (if applicable) 
 
N/A
Characters (if applicable) 
 
4.0
Editing/Design Quality 
 
4.0
'A Straw Man' by Amalie Jahn is the third and final installment in her 'Clay Lion' series. Melody, the sister of the main character in 'Tin Men' (the second in the series), is now in college. She and longtime boyfriend Nate are having their fair share of struggles, due mostly in part to the role Nate feels he played in a friend's untimely death. Despite it not really being his fault, he feels responsible, and Melody is having a hard time dealing with the strain that this has put on their relationship. She can't find a way to get through to Nate, to make him realize that the outcome was beyond his control. This, coupled with the fact that Nate is spiraling out of control and finding illegal ways to cope with the issue, threatens to tear them apart.

Melody considers traveling back in time to help him. She knows that if she does this, there can be terrible repercussions. She has witnessed this firsthand when her brother went back in time in 'Tin Men' and she doesn't want to deal with what might happen. Yet she knows that she needs to do something, and she doesn't see a way around taking the trip. She thinks she can certainly help him, but when she does so, something changes in the life she returns to that she can't wrap her head around. Life as she knows it can never be the same despite everyone else continuing on as if nothing has happened – because to them nothing did happen.

As Melody struggles with the ramifications of her time traveling, her life doesn't come together quite as she hoped it would. Her world becomes harder despite her attempts to make it easier. 'A Straw Man' provides in Melody a main character who, despite her most sincere attempts, finds herself at a crossroads that she can't ignore, and struggles with changes that can never be undone. A testimony to the heartache and pain that any decision can cause one to endure, 'A Straw Man' is a satisfying and engaging conclusion to Jahn's series.
Good Points
A testimony to the heartache and pain that any decision can cause one to endure, 'A Straw Man' is a satisfying and engaging conclusion to Jahn's series.
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