THE LAST CHANGELING by Chelsea Pitcher is Ordinary People-meets-Maleficent – and if that sounds like a strange combination, that’s because it is. Almost all of the information given in the blurb on the back of the book is actually kept from the reader for more than a hundred pages, and Elora’s motives for attending a human high school are extremely vague. Instead of a faerie war, we mostly get Taylor’s still-fresh grief over losing his younger brother and the torment of his high school. Elora’s ‘otherness’ (not to mention otherworldly beauty) gives Taylor something to focus on aside from his family’s pain, but it’s a long time before the reader gets to know her endgame.
Posts Tagged: fae
Ardent fans of Patricia Briggs may have already pieced together parts of this collection, housed in beat up paperbacks and anthologies already published. To have these existing stories and more gathered and carefully arranged by series timeline, makes this lovely hardback a treasure for any collector to have on the shelf.
Almost like GAME OF THRONES for the young adult set, HEIR OF FIRE follows assassin Celaena, captain Chaol, prince Dorian, healer Sorscha, and witch Manon. With all those characters, one may be concerned about getting lost. But though it started out slow, HEIR OF FIRE delivers plenty of the typical Maas action, plot twists and betrayals, leaving me holding my breath through at least the last four chapters.
The mythology of Baba Yaga portrays her as an old witch who lives in the woods in a spinning house that stands on chicken feet. She helps or hurts those who look for her based on what they do for her. I grew up reading and hearing stories of Baba Yaga so it was great to see a book that could effectively ‘modernize’ Baba Yaga and still keep the essence of who she is and what she does for people. I liked how the Baba Yaga mythology is added to with Barbara Yagar acting as a guardian between the human and the Otherworld where the fairies live.
Just when I thought the October Daye series couldn’t get any better, along comes THE WINTER LONG. Gathering so many hints and threads and portents, this book is one delicious secret after another coming undone.
This is one of those times I have to step back from a book that had me chair-dancing in glee and not rate it based on the end-of-book squeeage I felt, but to search for a little objectivity in my review. Reaction alone, this would be a five plus. Plus a few more.
Kate Kane is the epitome of my mental image of a noir detective – smoking, drinking, and always quick with the sarcastic quip. That alone is one of the reasons this series is so enjoyable. However, a few personality traits of one main character can’t hold up an entire book, and while we’ve got an interesting plot and side characters, along with some great writing, there were some unfortunate flaws that took away from my enjoyment of SHADOWS & DREAMS.
Short stories are a difficult form to master in any case, but when it comes to sci-fi and fantasy, the author has an even tougher challenge: building an entire world in just a few pages. As with any short-story collection featuring multiple authors, some of the contributions to MAGIC CITY: RECENT SPELLS, edited by Paula Guran, are more successful than others. Ultimately, I think the anthology does a great job of showcasing many different interpretations of ‘urban fantasy’ and gives readers the chance to discover something new.
There’s something to be said for a good novella. With so many series out there, or Long Epic Reads that, no matter how engaging, seem to go on forever without any set resolution, it’s nice to have a book you can sit down with and polish off on a rainy afternoon. It’s like the literary equivalent of a bag of chips, if you will.
Where to start? I’ve been staring at a blinking cursor for a few minutes now, trying to figure out how to put THE GIRL WHO NEVER WAS into some sort of coherent thought, but it’s not easy. It’s a pretty good parallel, now that I think about it, because that’s what I felt the entire time reading it.