fae

Review: Crown of Midnight, Sarah J Maas

Crown of MidnightCrown of Midnight (Goodreads)
Author: flag_usa Sarah J Maas (website)

Rating: ★★★★★

Eighteen-year-old Celaena Sardothien is bold, daring and beautiful – the perfect seductress and the greatest assassin her world has ever known. But though she won the King’s contest and became his champion, Celaena has been granted neither her liberty nor the freedom to follow her heart. The slavery of the suffocating salt mines of Endovier that scarred her past is nothing compared to a life bound to her darkest enemy, a king whose rule is so dark and evil it is near impossible to defy. Celaena faces a choice that is tearing her heart to pieces: kill in cold blood for a man she hates, or risk sentencing those she loves to death.

Celaena must decide what she will fight for: survival, love or the future of a kingdom. Because an assassin cannot have it all . . . And trying to may just destroy her.

Details

Series: Throne of Glass #2
Genre: YA high fantasy
Published: Bloomsbury Childrens, August 15 2013
Pages: 417
My copy: the publisher for review

Paper copies: Amazon.com • Amazon.co.uk • Book Depository
E-copies:  Amazon.com • Amazon.co.uk • Barnes & Noble • Bookworld (epub)

Please note: This is my review for the second book in this series, and so contains spoilers for the first, Throne of Glass. You may wish to read my review for that book instead!


Review

I loved Throne of Glass when I read it last year, so I was desperate to get my hands on Crown of Midnight. I am so, so glad that it not only didn’t disappoint as the second book in the series, but in fact was even more awesome than the first!

Calaena Sardothien has won the contest and been named the King’s Champion. Her job is to carry out the King’s Justice, to kill those who displease him, but Calaena secretly refuses to kill at the King’s order. She must find out about a secret plot against the crown before time runs out. Meanwhile, strange things are happening at the glass castle of Rifthold – dark hooded strangers stalk the library and bronze doorknockers take on a life of their own. What new terror is lurking in the dark places of the castle?

This second book shows great polish with its perfectly constructed pacing – quiet yet steady in the creepy parts, building up to some fantastic action scenes later in the book.  There are the sort of swoony passages that make you want to re-read sections over and over. I loved Chaol in the first book and wow, do I love him even more in this one. Dorian also has interesting developments throughout this story and I’ll look forward to seeing how his story plays out from here, however for his father the King, I am beginning to have Joffrey-esque levels of dislike.

In some ways, there are two distinct sections to this book. The first half is almost like a continuation of Throne of Glass – plenty of gorgeous romantic scenes and mysterious intrigue, then BAM – right in the middle, murder, betrayal and chaos reign for pretty much the rest of the story. Without spoiling anything, I was really surprised and a little upset by the unexpected turns but I couldn’t put the book down until I’d got right to the end. Fantastic writing and such heartbreaking scenes, even if I did want to slap Calaena at times for keeping everything to herself and not sharing any of her burdens. And oh, my god, the twists right at the end – I had my suspicions but wow, what a set up for the next book!

There are currently six books planned in this series (according to Goodreads), not to mention the several novellas that have been released featuring Celaena’s adventures (which, I have just discovered, are now available in Australia – *yoink!*). It’s going to be a long, impatient wait for the book three.

I’d recommend these books to those (not just young adults) who love a slightly eccentric, kick-arse heroine, swoon-worthy romance and some fast-paced and occasionally rather creepy action. If you haven’t read Throne of Glass yet, I’d encourage you to give it a go!

Warnings: Sexual situations, torture and violence

What did others think of Crown of Midnight?

  • Crown of Midnight, for me, is exactly what a good sequel should be. It’s a clever continuation of the first instalment (yet a story in its own right), with higher stakes and an enhanced framework for character progression.” – Realm of Fiction
  • “Crown of Midnight is fast paced, action packed, with great characters and an entertaining story.” – Book’d Out
  • “This series continues to make me completely happy even as it is tearing me apart. I keep falling in love with these characters and even when they’re breaking my heart I still root for them.” – In The Best Worlds

 

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Review: The Water Witch, Carol Goodman

The Water WitchTitle: Water Witch (Goodreads)
Author:  Carol Goodman (or her pseudonym, Juliet Dark)

Rating: ★★★★☆

“You have only to call my name to bring me back”, he whispered, his breath hot in my ear. “You have only to love me to make me human”.

Callie McFay is the guardian of the last gateway between the world of Faerie and mankind. Seduced by a powerful incubus demon, she has succeeded in banishing Liam to the Borderlands but he still haunts her dreams, tempting her with the knowledge of how to bring him back. But loving an incubus usually ends in death for a human. For her own sake Callie must learn to control her desires and ensure Liam remains trapped for all eternity in his watery prison.

Only there is a more dangerous creature than Liam in the Borderlands. The Water Witch is also looking for a way back…

Details

Series: Fairwick Chronicles #2
Genre: Adult Paranormal Romance
Published: Ebury Press, September 2012 (will be published February 13, 2013 in the USA by Ballantine – Random House)
Pages: 339
My Copy: The publisher via Netgalley

Paper copies: Amazon.com (pre-order) • Amazon.co.uk • Book Depository
E-copies: Amazon.com  Amazon.co.uk  Barnes & Noble • Bookworld (epub)

Please note: This review is for the second book in this series, so contains spoilers for the first book, Incubus/The Demon Lover. You may wish to go and read my review of that book instead!

Review

Note: The Water Witch was published in the US under Carol Goodman’s pseudonym, Juliet Dark. 

Callie McFay is a doorkeeper – the only one who can open the last remaining door to Faerie in the woods near Fairwick. The society of witches called the Grove have decided that the door is too dangerous to remain open – it has been letting in all manner of creatures including the Incubus who attacked Callie a few months previously. They want it shut, for ever. Callie and the supernatural creatures who call Fairwick home do not agree and decide to do everything within their power to keep the door open.

US cover

US cover

Meanwhile, despite her best intentions, Callie is still desperately missing her Incubus lover, Liam. She travels to faerie and meets up with him there, but when she returns she starts having strange dreams again. Could Liam be back?

Water Witch is an enjoyable sequel to Incubus. We get to see the development of Callie’s powers, but the romantic aspects of the story that were in the forefront of Incubus are not so important in Water Witch. In fact, Callie has less actual sex with anyone and has more imaginary dream sex again. Also she falls for no less than three separate men over the course of this book. I’m starting to think Callie is… how can I put this delicately? Impressionable, perhaps?

The story is once again smart and quite funny at times. The secondary characters really develop well and bring out their interesting personalities.

One of the main problems I had with Incubus was that the story consisted of a few exciting events, interspersed with boring college life. Water Witch has none of that – in fact the entire story plays out within the space of a few weeks during the college vacation, so this book is free to contain pretty much all action. And it does!

Callie’s poor Incubus doesn’t get much of a go in this book, although there is some raunchy action early on in the story. Without giving anything away, Callie really frustrated me with her inability to see the obvious right in front of her. The second half of the story was really quite predictable and I found it a shame. Once again, we’re left on a cliffhanger so we’ll just have to wait and see what happens next!

Warnings: Graphic sexual content.

What did others think of Water Witch?

  • “It was an entertaining read, but very high on the cheese factor.” – The Book Stop
  • “I desperately wanted to know what would happen on each page. I was also hoping a heavy branch would fall on Callie’s grandmother.” – Fangs, Wands & Fairy Dust
  • “Callie Callie Callie… what are we going to do with you?? She seems to be a lovely girl, but someone you just want to smack upside the head for all the lousy decisions she makes!” – Book Chick City

Review: Incubus, Carol Goodman

incubusTitle: Incubus (Goodreads) or The Demon Lover in the US
Author:  Carol Goodman (or her pseudonym, Juliet Dark)

Rating: ★★★☆☆

Dr. Callie McFay travels to the small college town of Fairwick in New York State for a job interview. Despite it being her second choice she finds herself talked into accepting a job offer from the Folklore Department to teach a class on demons and vampires. She also finds herself drawn to an old house in the woods where Gothic novelist Dahlia LaMotte used to live and buys it on a whim, despite the seeming reluctance of the estate agent to sell it to her.

But on the night of her job interview, she had a very vivid erotic dream about a man made out of shadows and moonlight, and this dream becomes a regular occurrence when she moves into her new home. Callie starts to feel like a heroine in one of the gothic novels she teaches as slowly it dawns on her that things at the college – and in her home – are not what they seem. She learns that her house is supposed to be haunted by LaMotte’s former lover and her new – and rather strange – colleagues tell her an unfamiliar fairy tale about an incubus-demon with a human past who was enchanted by a fairy queen…

Details

Series: Fairwick Chronicles #1
Genre: Adult Paranormal Romance
Published: Ebury Press, July 2011
Pages: 466

Paper copies: Amazon.com • Amazon.co.uk • Book Depository
E-copies: Amazon.com  Amazon.co.uk  Barnes & Noble • Bookworld (epub)

Review

Note: Incubus was published in the US as The Demon Lover, under Carol Goodman’s pseudonym, Juliet Dark. It is called Incubus in the UK and Australia.

This is where all stories start, on the edge of a dark wood…

I started reading this book thinking it was a YA paranormal romance (perhaps based on the look of the cover?) – but from the first chapter it certainly is not! There are some quite erotic scenes all the way through, so be warned!

US Cover

US Cover

Callie has had erotic dreams featuring a shadowy stranger since she was a teenager, but since coming to live in the town of Fairwick, a few hours drive from New York City, she’s been having more of them. Her supposedly haunted house is not all that it seems and the woods in the back yard are home to some strange and dangerous creatures. Then, Callie discovers there is also more to the staff and students at Fairwick College than meets the eye. Callie’s struggles now include a strange presence in her house plus fitting into supernatural society, not to mention the freezing weather.

The premise and folklore of this story are very well-designed and those who love Celtic mythology should enjoy the many references to fairies and other creatures. It reminded me somewhat of Deborah Harkness’ A Discovery of Witches in its paranormal society and academia, and the sexy parts were quite True Blood. The writing was lovely to read and contains plenty of references not just to literary classics but also to modern pop culture.

Unfortunately, the plot did not flow well. Callie seems to flit here and there, does this thing, then she does that. There are a series of exciting events that happen every now and then, but the rest is filled with rather drab day-to-day college happenings.  I felt that quite a lot could have been removed without damaging the story, especially in the first half of the book. I was slightly baffled when Liam turned up, but it didn’t take me long to work out what was happening and after that the rest was quite predictable.

Callie didn’t seem like such a strong heroine and she doesn’t get much of a chance to try out her magical abilities, but I actually really liked Liam and I hope that the second book will bring more from him! I also enjoyed reading about the town of Fairwick and the staff and students of the college – the extra characters were the saving grace of this story, especially Ralph!

Despite the things I didn’t like about the story, I’ll read the second book in the series, The Water Witch – I’m very curious to find out what happens next.

Warnings: Graphic sexual content.

What did others think of Incubus?

  • “Steamy and nuanced, but ultimately a fairly predictable entrance into the already overcrowded paranormal romance genre.” – Kirkus Reviews
  • “If only it were just about the incubus, the story would’ve progressed and ended faster, but no; I was surprised toencounter a whole assortment of paranormal and magical creatures…” – 4 stars – My Library in the Making
  • “Such as the Gothic romances Callie references, this novel is rich in atmospheric prose and mystery. As a book lover and avid reader and hoarder of books, I can’t say how much I loved Callie’s constant references to literature and her talk of how many books she owned.” – 6/10 – All the Books I Can Read

Review and Giveaway: Rua, Miranda Kavi

Welcome to The Oaken Bookcase’s stop on the Rua book tour! You’ll find my review below, but at the end of the post there is a tour-wide giveaway to enter for a chance to win a copy of the book.


Title: Rua (Goodreads)

Author:  Miranda Kavi (@miranda00writes)

Rating: ★★★★☆

A girl with an unknown destiny.

A boy from a hidden world.When Celeste starts at a new school in a small, Kansas town, she hears whispering voices, has vivid nightmares, and swarms of blackbirds follow her every move. She is oddly drawn to aloof Rylan, the other new student who has his own secrets. The exact moment she turns seventeen, she wakes to a bedroom full of strange creatures, purple light emanating from her hands, and Rylan breaking in through her bedroom window.

He knows what she is . . .

Details

Series: Stand Alone (for now?)
Genre: YA Paranormal Fantasy
Published: Self-published, September 2, 2012
Pages: 265
My copy: From BB Book Tours

Paper copies: Amazon.com • Amazon.co.uk
E-copies: Amazon.com • Amazon.co.uk 

Review

Celeste has always felt like an outsider – moved around by her loving adoptive parents to new towns and schools frequently. This latest move is different though – as she approaches her seventeenth birthday, Celeste begins having nightmares and hearing voices in the night, and why does the gorgeous boy Rylan keep staring at her like that?

On her birthday, it is finally revealed that Celeste is one of the Tuatha de Danaan, gatekeepers between the worlds and controllers of the Sidhe. Things only get more strange as she discovers more about who she is and what she is capable of.

Rua is quite different to other stories of the Fae that I’ve read. I think it was the American small-town setting rather than a Celtic-inspired fantasy world that felt so different. The characters were quite detailed and had realistic reactions to the supernatural events. I especially loved Celeste’s new bestie, Tink. What’s not to love about a gay witch with a big heart?

The supernatural elements were introduced fairly gradually which created some fantastic suspense throughout the story. The romance between Celeste and Rylan was very swoony but moved a little fast for me – I felt it was bordering on insta-love which is a bit of a shame considering how much I loved the rest of the story. We also never really find out the extent of Rylan’s powers or hear much of his back story.

The only major problem I had with Rua was that it was too short! I really hope Miranda Kevi intends to expand more on this world – this promising debut has laid a great foundation for more tales of the Tuatha de Danaan and the other supernatural beings mentioned. I’d recommend Rua to anyone who enjoys YA paranormal romances, and I’ll be looking out for Miranda Kavi’s future work with great interest.

Warnings: Fairly squeaky clean, just a little scary.

 

About the Author

Miranda Kavi is a YA and Urban Fantasy author. She has worked as an attorney, an executive recruiter, and an assistant in a biological anthropology lab. She loves scary movies, museums, and is hopelessly addicted to  chocolate. She lives in the Houston area with her husband and daughter.

Get in touch with Miranda via her website, Twitter, Facebook or Goodreads.

 


Giveaway

BB Book Tours has arranged a great giveaway for those in the US (sorry Internationals 🙁  )

Details:

  • US only
  • Win a paperback copy of RUA
  • Also win a cute little stuffed blackbird (complete with an authentic crow call recorded when you squeeze it) and other swag!
  • Enter via the Rafflecopter below. Please note, I am not organising this giveaway – it is tour-wide.

Good luck!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Guest Review: The Undivided, Jennifer Fallon

This guest post was written by the awesome Steph, as part of the Discover Australian Fantasy feature, running all July on The Oaken Bookcase. Please visit the Aussie Fantasy page to see the other reviews and articles and also to enter the giveaway!

Title: The Undivided (Goodreads)

Author:  Jennifer Fallon (@JenniferFallon)

Rating: ★★★★☆

The Undivided are divided. The psychic twins, Ronan and Darragh, have been separated by the traitor Druid, Amergin, who has kidnapped Ronan and thrown him through a rift into another reality. Now time is running out for Darragh. If Ronan isn’t found soon, they will both die. But his twin brother is lost in a reality where Druids are legend, and there is no magic. Somehow, before the Autumn Equinox, they must find one young man in a world of six billion people…

Meanwhile, Ren Kavanagh has no notion of where he comes from. He is plagued by strange injuries that appear from nowhere and everyone is convinced he is deliberately harming himself for attention. Then he meets the enticing and mysterious Trasa, and before he can figure out how it happened, he is in serious trouble – arrested for arson and possibly murder.

Rescue will come from a completely unexpected direction. Ren is about to discover more about his origins than he bargained for, meet the twin brother he never knew he had, and discover nobody is what they seem, especially his new friend, the half-faerie, half-human Trasa… Amergin’s daughter.

Details

Series: Rift Runners #1 of 3
Genre: Fantasy
Published: Harper Voyager, 1 April 2011

Paper copies: Booktopia, Kinokuniya, Abebooks.com
E-copies: Amazon.com, Borders.com.au, Kobo

Review

“It shouldn’t be this easy to kill someone”… Even the first line of The Undivided draws you in, wondering why is it so easy, and who are you assassinating?

Once I began reading I found it very hard to put down. Fallon follows her usual style of throwing the reader in the deep end right from the beginning, gradually providing just the right bit of information when you need it.

Fallon brings her world to life beautifully, cleverly combining the genres of dimension hopping and historical fantasy to make a believable and complicated realm of possibilities.

Gradually shifting from their comfort zones, the characters cross paths in two dimensions – the ‘magic filled Ireland’ and a world very similar to our own.  The dialogue and finer details, such as when each character experiences things for the first time, are very well done. Little things like ‘puddle phone’ instead of ‘scrying bowl’ cracked me up. A few developments are a little convenient, but that’s forgivable when much of the characters’ reactions are realistic and thought out.

I found the book had an overall feeling of displacement or ‘needing to belong’. Even from the beginning of the story, each character is seeking change.  I also got the impression that this first book in the trilogy is just introducing the characters to their potential. I’m looking forward to seeing them developing their skills and relationships in the following books.

The Undivided takes you on fast-paced journey, jumping between alternate realities and a strong cast of characters finding their world changing around them and trying to keep one step ahead. I can’t wait to get started on the next book to see what complicated situations the twins can get themselves into, the imaginative worlds they’ll explore and the resourceful ways they’ll get out of them.

– Steph

Rift Runners series

  1. The Undivided (2011)
  2. The Dark Divide (April 2012)

 

About the author

Jennifer Fallon grew up in Melbourne and then Canberra as one of 13 children. She has had a range of jobs, but focused on her writing career after her late husband suggested that she ‘quit writing and be a better housewife, because you’re never going to get published’.

Her first series, ‘The Demon Child Trilogy’, was shortlisted for the 2000 Aurealis Awards as the best Fantasy of 2000. She has since written a number of successful fantasy series and standalone works and has been shortlisted for another Aurealis, the David Gemmell Legend of Fantasy award and the Romantic Times Best Fantasy award.

Jennifer has two daughters, a son and has cared for over 50 foster children. After spending many years in the Northern Territory, she now lives in New Zealand where she is setting up the Reynox International Writers Centre.

Learn more about Jennifer at her website, www.jenniferfallon.com.au.

 

Review: Shadowfell, Juliet Marillier

This review is part of the Discover Australian Fantasy feature, running all July on The Oaken Bookcase. Please visit the Aussie Fantasy page to see the other reviews and articles and also to enter the giveaway!

Title: Shadowfell (Goodreads)

Author:  Juliet Marillier

Rating: ★★★☆☆

The people of Alban are afraid. The tyrannical king and his masked Enforcers are scouring the land, burning villages and enslaving the canny.

Fifteen-year-old Neryn has fled her home in the wake of its destruction, and is alone and penniless, hiding her extraordinary magical power. She can rely on no one – not even the elusive Good Folk who challenge and bewilder her with their words.

When an enigmatic stranger saves her life, Neryn and the young man called Flint begin an uneasy journey together. She wants to trust Flint but how can she tell who is true in this land of evil? For Neryn has heard whisper of a mysterious place far away: a place where rebels are amassing to free the land and end the King’s reign.

A place called Shadowfell.

Details

Series: Shadowfell #1 of 3
Genre: Young adult Fantasy
Published: Pan Macmillan Australia, July 1, 2012. Also Random House Children’s Books and Knopf, September 11, 2012.
My copy: For review from Pan Macmillan Australia, thanks very much!
Pages: 360

Buy Aussie paper copies: Fishpond • Dymocks
Pre-order Paper copies: Amazon.com • Amazon.co.uk • Book Depository
E-copies: Amazon.com (available now) • Barnes & Noble (preorder)

Review

Neryn is alone in the harsh land of Alban. Hunted by the Enforcers, she turns north towards Shadowfell – a place rumoured to harbour those who would fight for the freedom of the land from the evil King. Along the way she must decide who to trust and which path to take to discover her own potential.

US/UK cover

Shadowfell is a beautifully written tale of a young girl’s personal journey, away from her grief and pain and towards forgiveness and strength. It’s this very journey, though, that made this book a little tedious for me. The road to Shadowfell is long and hard and Neryn spends a lot of time stumbling along, hurt or sick. The gentle pace makes it feel almost as if you are making the journey along with Neryn. Perhaps I’ve been reading too many action-packed fantasies lately!

Another aspect I found a little frustrating was that Neryn constantly has to guard her tongue to keep the people and Good Folk (fae) helping her safer, in case the Enforcers come through behind her and try to get information out of people. I didn’t really understand how that would help keep them safe – surely the Enforcers would still torture people anyway for associating with a fugitive?

For this reason, the whole story becomes a huge communication breakdown, with no-one actually telling each other anything. This caused problem after problem, with Flint leaving without explanations and Neryn running off without waiting for one. They spend a lot of time in silence!

There are some beautiful parts of this story – especially when Neryn is dealing directly with her losses or with the Good Folk. Her slow-burning romance with Flint is lovely, but it broke my heart to never know whether he was to be trusted or not. Flint himself is a very deep character – much more interesting than Neryn herself, I felt. They didn’t really spend much time with many Good Folk for me to get a good feel of them – I hope they’ll feature more further on in the series.

I’ll be more than happy to pick up Juliet’s other works – her writing style is beautiful and the descriptions of landscapes made me feel like I was standing in the Scottish Highlands. If you love beautifully told fantasies then you’ll enjoy Shadowfell, but at the moment I personally prefer stories with a little faster pace.

Warnings: Dark themes and violence.

Shadowfell Series

  1. Shadowfell
  2. Raven Flight (planned for 2013)

 

About the Author

Juliet Marillier was born July 27, 1948 in Dunedin, New Zealand and grew up surrounded by Celtic music and stories. Her own Celtic-Gaelic roots inspired her to write her first series, the Sevenwaters Trilogy. Marillier was educated at the University of Otago, where she majored in music and languages, graduating BA and a B Mus (Hons). She has said in an interview that this academic training strengthened her writing, and that her lifelong interest in history, folklore and mythology has had a major influence on her storytelling style.

She lives in a hundred-year-old cottage in a riverside suburb of Perth. She shares her home with four dogs. She has four adult children and six grandchildren, all of whom live in Australia. She has been a fulltime writer since 2002, having previously worked at a variety of jobs including music teaching at both secondary and tertiary levels and in the Public Service.

Juliet is also well known for her Sevenwaters series, as well as other series such as the Bridei Chronicles and the two Wildwood books.

Yes, I know Juliet is a Kiwi but since she lives in Australia, I’m adopting her as an honorary Aussie!

Review: Memory’s Wake, Selina Fenech

This review is part of the Discover Australian Fantasy feature, running all July on The Oaken Bookcase. Please visit the Aussie Fantasy page to see the other reviews and articles and also to enter the giveaway!

Title: Memory’s Wake (Goodreads)

Author:  Selina Fenech (@SelinaFenech)

Rating: ★★★★★

Lost in a world full of monstrous fairies, a troubled sixteen year old has to find out who she is, and why her memories were stolen, before she is found by those who want her dead.

She takes the name “Memory” and knows she has just one goal – to find her way home, wherever that is. But the land she’s found herself in is completely unfamiliar. No technology to be seen, and iron is banned, thanks to a pact the humans have with the magical creatures who share their pre-industrial era world. In her t-shirt and torn jeans, Memory knows she’s different, even before she performs impossible magic.

As the fragments of her troubled past are pieced together, even her newly found friends question her humanity. Memory just wanted to know who she is. She never thought she’d have to question what she is.

Details

Series: Memory’s Wake Trilogy #1 of 3
Genre: Young adult Fantasy
Published: Fairies and Fantasy Pty Ltd, June 2011
Pages: 320

Paper copies: Amazon.com • Amazon.co.uk • Book Depository
E-copies: Amazon.com • Amazon.co.uk • Selina Fenech.com (epub)

Review

From the very beginning of Memory’s Wake, the reader is dropped into the action as Memory appears in the land of Avall with no memories of who she is or where she came from. She remembers things about another world, but it’s clear from the soldiers chasing her and the monsters she encounters that this is not the world she thinks it is.  Befriended and helped by Eloryn and later by Roen and the mysterious Will, Memory travels across the land in search of a safe haven, as well as the secrets of her identity.

I loved reading Memory’s Wake. The action was almost non-stop, and in the quieter sections, romance or an amazing discovery pushed the story onwards – I didn’t want to stop reading. I’m not just saying this because Selina’s lovely artworks are making my banners look great this month!

The first thing you’ll notice when starting to read this book is that it’s illustrated – Selina has included 44 black and white illustrations throughout this book, some full-page, others small drawings at the start of each chapter. They translated very well to the kindle version and helped me to visualise an already very visual story.

Memory herself is a fantastic character – with just the right amount of absolute confusion with her amnesia and disorientation in a new world, she still comes out with the occasional witty remark that often the other characters don’t understand. Her magic is quite terrifying – I am looking forward to reading more about that in future stories.

The ending left me with a lot of questions – Who ends up with Roen? What’s Will’s story? What happened to Memory in our world? How did Thayl find her there? and plenty more. I was pleased to discover that there are two more books planned in this series so hopefully some of my burning questions will be answered!

If you love fast-moving fantasy with a touch of swoony romance, nasty fae and plenty of magic, you’ll love Memory’s Wake.

Warnings: Dark themes and violence.

Memory’s Wake Trilogy

  1. Memory’s Wake
  2. Hope’s Reign (planned for 2012)
  3. Providence Unveiled (in planning)

 

About the Author

Born in 1981 to Australian and Maltese parents, Selina lives in Australia with her husband, an unnamed cat, and a lorikeet who’s far too clever. During her life Selina has found ancient Roman treasure, survived cancer, had knights joust at her wedding, been mugged for doughnuts and eaten every bizarre and wonderful food put in front of her. And now, she’s also written and published a novel.

It’s an undeniable truth that Selina Fenech has been lost to the realms of fantasy since she first laid hands on books. Faced with overwhelming heartache that our own world wasn’t so full of magic and adventure, Selina did the only thing she could. She began creating her own worlds of magic by painting and writing.

Then one day, the other children told her that books weren’t cool. Selina turned away from books and writing and submerged herself in her visual art. She became a successful fantasy illustrator, supporting herself with sales of her art that now have a worldwide following. Australian readers will recognize Selina’s fairy and fantasy artwork from bookmarks available in most major Australian bookstores. But the desire to tell stories remained. Because books are cool. Don’t let anyone ever tell you otherwise.

You can see Selina’s beautiful artwork at her website, selinafenech.com.

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