Generally, I really enjoy it when authors take their writing in new directions. Maybe a contemporary/realistic author tries science fiction, or a speculative author attempts a mystery. So, when Jennifer Echols--who's a favorite author of mine--announced that she'd written a paranormal "new adult" novel, my interest was piqued.
Unfortunately, while Levitating Las Vegas had an interesting concept, the filmsy world-building, characterization and plot largely failed to to deliver.
Holly Starr is a Las Vegas showgirl and recent college grad who has taken medication for years to prevent hallucinations that started as a teen, hallucinations that she could levitate. She's tired of spending her nights assisting in her father's magic show and hopes to forge her own path in Las Vegas. Her former classmate, Elijah also experienced hallucinations as a teen that he's been medicated for ever since. In his case, he believed he could read minds.
Both of their hallucinations threaten to return when the supply of their medication suddenly disappears, and they start to wonder if maybe they're not so crazy after all?
““Why the hell not?” Holly yelled back. “It doesn’t sound so bad when I think about all the shit you and my parents have put me through. Just for starters, all the edamame, Kaylee. My mom brainwashed me into purchasing and steaming my very own edamame even now that I’m out from under her roof, just to keep my weight down. Do you know how many cookies I’ve missed out on in the last seven years, all in the name of pleasing my parents despite my fake debilitating mental illness? God!” ”
Thus ensues a mayhem-filled story that includes everything from a kidnapping (Elijah kidnaps Holly) to a show-stopper of a magic trick involving nudity and the Hoover Dam.
With this wild premise, Levitating Las Vegas could have been a fun read, and I did have moments when I really enjoyed it (such as Holly, who'd never driven a car, "driving" it down the Strip in her own unique fashion) and am a sucker for caper-style plots, as a big fan of urban fantasy, I expected more in terms of logical construction of the world and magic.