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Monday, January 10, 2011

The Dimensional Shift by Frances Pauli

The Dimensional Shift by Frances Pauli
Publisher: Awe-Struck Publishing
Genre: Action/Adventure, Contemporary, Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Suspense/Mystery
Length: Full Length (193 pgs)
Heat Level: sweet
Rating: 4 books
Reviewed by Water Lily

Chloe came to the Three Lakes area for the peace and quiet. She happily abandoned the world of retail management, suits and promotions to work as a hotel maid catering to the local tourists. Until Andrew Paige showed up--a suit of the worst kind, the kind that makes her knees weak.
When Andrew offers her a job at his hotel, Chloe is hell bent on resisting, but the Dimensional Shift is no ordinary hotel, and Chloe is immediately tossed into the world of inter-dimensional tourists, their odd accommodations, and a string of thefts that threaten to ruin her chances at romance.

While learning the ropes, dealing with the Shift's unusual guests, and trying to determine if the boss' interest in her is strictly professional, Chloe uncovers a plot to steal the hotel's dimensional keys. With the help of the town gossip, her alien abductee neighbor, and her new invisible best friend, Chloe confronts an inter-dimensional crime ring and a host of complications that make romancing the boss look like the least of her troubles.

The Dimensional Shift is a good book—quirky premise, great world building, interesting characters, nice suspense in spots, good fantasy/sci fi—but not really a romance.

This book is about Chloe learning about and immersing herself in a strange new world. It’s nicely done. The plot was interesting and moved the story along, but this is definitely a character driven, almost slice-of-life book. What little sexual tension there might be is negligible at best. Chloe Watson is convinced Andrew Paige isn’t interested in her romantically, so the reader is as well. Most of the time she’s too busy with her life and work to even think of Andrew. And when she does think of him it’s as a boss or “a typical suit.” It might even be a stretch to say The Dimensional Shift had romantic elements.

But that’s not to say it isn’t a good read. I really enjoyed The Dimension Shift. Ms. Pauli’s descriptions brought this book to life. A hotel that spans different dimensions and caters to creatures from unheard of places could have easily become bogged down with description, but the reader gets just enough detail to thoroughly experience each scene. I was charmed by how Chloe tries to categorize the different creatures she encounters, “...humanoid, humanoid animal, standard animal, unknown animal, (originally she labeled this group “beasts”, but felt the term could hardly be considered politically correct) and gelatinous non-human...” And that’s only the beginning. There are other types of creatures as well. Heck, her new best friend is invisible. I also enjoy how Chloe uses her strictly human skills and knowledge on patently non-human clients.

I would have liked a bit more motivation for Chloe’s taking the job at the Dimensional Shift. She isn’t even sure exactly what job is being offered or what it pays before she accepts it. She’s so capable and practical in the rest of her life that accepting the job like that seemed out of character. Chloe is so well rounded that it’s easy to know what is and isn’t in character for her. I like Chloe and am excited that a sequel, Aspect Ratio, is coming out in 2011. I’m looking forward to reading it.