Indigara is a 2007-released novella from established writer Tanith Lee. The book is geared for a young adult audience, but there are several “cuss words” in the book. (Bit@%, Godd@#$, etc.) I am not sure that the cussing is necessary, although it’s very sparse. The novella is 195 pages in hardback and the cover artist was Daniel Dos Santos. This is the first work by Tanith Lee that I have read.
The novella is written in a neat format – think stage directions and journal entries. The story is about a young girl named Jet Latter and her robot dog, Otis. Jet’s sister gets a bit part in a movie and the family is dragged to the filming site. Jet feels out of place with her family because they are eating up the fame and stardom of Ollywood. Jet and Otis discover that beneath Ollywood is a parallel universe where pilot episodes/movies seem to be reality. Jet is not the only one from the “real” world to have ventured down into Indigara, the world of castoff props and scripts.
I think the main character and her dog are really cool and have appropriate attitudes and ideas. I like the futuristic feel of the world that is presented. The parallel universe is developed quickly and smoothly, although it isn’t all perfectly spelled out for the reader. As the reader follows Jet and Otis into Indigara, the whole concept of movies becoming real gets interesting. I really like the ideas that the author is playing with – and I feel these same concepts could easily be expanded into a full-size adult novel. I found the idea of movies becoming reality to be a neat concept and enjoyed this dalliance of imagination – more so than I thought I would have enjoyed the idea.
The supporting characters are present enough, but the reader does not really bond with them. At some points, the story is a bit confusing or choppy – I think there may be a little too much that the author tried to include in this book. I gave this book three stars, but I would have given it four if not for the usage of a the concepts of dragons and light-astrology. When I say astrology, I mean, somehow the characters’ Zodiac sign explains what sort of dragon they are connected to – although the whole earth, fire, air, water dragon part of the storyline is a bit messy. Frankly, I could have done without the dragons. Having a parallel universe made of discarded movies is interesting enough.