A chunk of my November was spent reading things written by Gennifer Albin, and since three of those things were novellas and/or short stories — all part of the Crewel World series — I thought it might be nice to put these mini reviews all together in their own post, instead of lumping them with my (already quote full) November Mini Reviews post.
The Cypress Project (Crewel World #0.1)
When I heard that this was available to read for free online, of course I bookmarked it and read it as soon as I had the chance. This short story was exactly what I had been hoping for ever since reading Crewel: some history and explanation for how their world got that way. It was interesting to learn about The Cypress Project, the seed that later grew into all of Arras (and later grew out of control). We get a good look at the minds and hearts of those involved; from the scientists to the benefactors to the girls they experimented on in order to develop the weaving ability. A satisfying read, told from the perspective of one of their first test subjects, leaving me wondering if I would see her again in later books. It was just enough to sate my curiosity and whet my appetite for Altered.
The Department of Alterations (Crewel World #0.5)
After finishing The Cypress Project, I was eager for more, so I grabbed the other two novellas for the series. I wish I had I known, before buying the Kindle version, that this one was available for free online, because it was not nearly as long or satisfying as the previous novella. The cover is absolutely stunning, yes, and the content is interesting. It’s just that it was over before I knew it, which was really disappointing. The glimpse of a new secret on Arras was definitely cool (and came in handy when reading the next book), but it was just way too short. Why did I rate it the same as The Cypress Project then? Well, I liked the content — I just wanted MORE! Seriously, save your money and just read this one online.
The Rain is a Lie (Crewel World #0.6?)
This one, I didn’t mind paying for, even though I found out that it is also available for free online. Once again, the artwork is freaking gorgeous (seriously: why didn’t they hire this guy to do the covers for the BOOKS?), and this time the content was a bit more hefty. I loved the mystery that developed in the story, introducing me to some new concepts and characters that might make an appearance in the next book. This might have been shorter than The Cypress Project — I don’t really know anymore — and it may not have been quite as enlightening, but it was definitely my favorite of the three. Very much recommended.