Locked Within: Radford student self publishes

Kristen Lester is an inspirational young woman who has surpassed the normal standards of college students. She’s dedicated much of her time to write a novel while balancing her school work here at RU. This accomplishment has not gone unnoticed by Whim Magazine. Each word creates an atmosphere thick with despair and darkness. There are small moments where love and happiness pierce the looming veil.

Author Kristen Lester.
Photo by Stephen Furtado.

Locked Within has a semi-original storyline. Jenny’s a teenager who suffers from crippling depression. It’s caused a rift between her and her parents and thus gives way to her parent’s decisions to ship her off to her mysterious aunt. Little does Jenny know that this cold decision was set in stone years ago by a dark force. Jenny’s reality is shattered as forces of good and evil battle over her unknown future. This book is filled with girl drama, simmering love and gruesome transgressions. The characters blend together in a pot of chaos and retribution.authorauthor

Jenny’s the main protagonist who suffers from severe depression. Her fate is tinted with an ancient darkness that slowly becomes revealed to her as the story progresses. When reading, I didn’t really see the depression seeping out of her like a poison. It was more like a wisp lingering in the background. Either way, Jenny was an interesting character who stood her ground well.

James is our antagonist, spreading strife and fear in his wake. His actions made me cringe on more than one occasion. James has all of the attributes a good villain needs but Lester amplified them all. His character oozes malicious intent and it wraps around the reader like an icy blanket. Lester’s imagination must have been a cloud of darkness when creating this antagonist, but regardless, she did a phenomenal job.

Other characters thicken the plot with betrayal and love. Seth and Jenny give us  our dose of romance, lightening up the poor circumstances she finds herself in, but their love blossoms a little too quickly for my taste. There was no flirting or teasing before the two hopped into each other’s arms. This was disappointing-but their love isn’t perfect, which adds some realism to the relationship.

The book contained a few grammatical mistakes, which didn’t take away from the written content.  The book is only ten chapters which is uncommonly short when compared to other books. However, I believe the ten chapter length was appropriate in regards to the plot.  Lester did well with her first book and she can only improve as her series continues. Jenny has been through life-altering events and I’m interested to see where she will end up next.

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