Review: Unicorn Keep by Angelia Almos

23636368Unicorn Keep
By: Angelia Almos
Publisher: Thoroughweb Press
Published: Nov. 26, 2014
Genre: YA Fantasy

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Jiline of Ainsley is dismayed when her best friend is selected by the mages to become a unicorn keeper at the Keep, an isolated mountain fortress. Especially since Madelen is in love and engaged to the richest boy in the village. Jiline on the other hand has no prospects of marriage or a trade in their small village. So, she comes up with a plan to take Madelen’s place at the Keep and hopefully flunk out of unicorn keeper training before the mages can discover the deception. Unfortunately, the unicorns have their own plans for her.

Mage Herrick, son of the Keep Mage, returns home to the Keep as the trainee keepers arrive. A chance encounter with Jiline, who he believes is Madelen, on the trail sparks a magical connection between the two. Knowing he can’t feel a magical draw to someone who has no magic, he tries to prove Madelen (Jiline) has magic within her. His attention brings unforeseen complications for both of them.


1thoughtsWhen the mages come riding into her town looking for young people to potentially work at their keep, Jiline has no idea what to expect. However, what she doesn’t expect is to have her best friend be chosen as a trainee, while she herself gets passed up. Her friend is promised to marry the mayor’s son, but with her new life soon to start at the Keep, that future will no longer happen. So Jiline devises a plan, she will go to the keep in place of her friend, flunk out of the program,  and no one will be the wiser. Only it’s not that simple. There’s a mage who is suspicious of her, and the unicorns have requested her help in escaping the keep.

This is a short entertaining story. A lot of time passes in this book without realizing it. The author doesn’t go into a lot of day to day details. Instead a lot of stuff is glossed over and mentioned in passing. I both liked and disliked this. With doing such, there isn’t a lot of character development. You are told about the characters but you don’t really connect fully with them. There were times where we are told that Jiline has a talk with one of the other keepers, Eli, but you’re not privy to all the details. It’s only mentioned that they spoke. I wish the author went more into the story because like Eli (a secondary character who plays a big part in the storyline), there were characters who play a big part in this story who don’t really come past the words on the page. I guess what I’m trying to say is that the story was two dimensional. The characters were just not brought to life.

I wish the story was fleshed out a bit more because I personally like to have a connection with the characters, and I didn’t have that here. There were also a lot of blank spots in the story. You go on this magical journey but you don’t really know what caused this to happen in the first place. How were the unicorns captured in the first place? Are there others out there or just them? What does it mean to be a mage? Is it a taught trait or hereditary? Not to mention there is this creature that attacks them on their journey and Jiline recognizes it from her studies, but because the author didn’t make us privy to the scene where she learned about said creature, I had no idea what the creature looked like. There were a lot of things like that that were looked over. The story ended on a note that made me feel like that was it. Like the characters were riding off into the sunset. So I don’t know if anything will be hashed out or if the author is just leaving it up to the readers to figure out.

I still enjoyed the story though. I can’t say that I’ve read many books that had unicorns in it, and certainly not ones where unicorns were a predominant character. Not only are there a lot of scenes with them in it but Jiline is able to telepathically communicate with them. So instead of just being, Horse 1 and Horse 2… they have names and personalities. It was definitely interesting to have so much interaction with a creature who rarely makes it’s way in the spotlight of novels.


1favequote“She was riding a unicorn. The preposterousness of it hit him deep in his stomach. Madelen was riding a unicorn. Not only was she riding one, but from what he had been able to gather the unicorn had commanded it.”


3 Thoughts on “Review: Unicorn Keep by Angelia Almos

  1. I hadn’t heard of this one! I’m not a big fan of unicorns in books, but I might have to give it a shot since the concept is kind of interesting. Great review!

  2. I don’t think I will pick this one up, because the idea of not enough character development and glossing over areas puts me off. I wasn’t sure, to be honest, when I saw the cover. But thanks for the review!

    Check out my review and giveaway:

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