I enjoy books in the Fantasy genre (like The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings) and this sounded like it might be a good book. All I can say is...WOW, it's an awesome book. The characters are believable and within a sort time you find yourself so engrossed with their lives that you feel their pain & joy. The two central people are Elon, leader of the Elves, and Ailith Princess of Riverford. Elon senses an Evil presence in the land and goes in search of the source. In that search, he comes in contact with Ailith, who is just a few days shy of her coming of age. These two become great friends as they discover the source of the coming Evil. From here the roller coaster ride begins as they race to save their lives and the lives of their peoples. Once you get through the introduction of all the characters, you won't be able to stop reading. The story is that good!!!
The Coming Storm is the most compelling book I've read in a long time. I realize that's a gushy way to start a review, but as a long-time reader of fantasy novels, I'm comparing it to the often cliched books of the same type.
Regardless of genre, Valerie Douglas has created a realistic and internally consistent world of compelling characters. I like strong female characters, and Ailith is certainly that. She's heroic without being annoying. She doesn't succeed at everything she does, and is well aware of her faults, but her strength of will and devotion to her friends is touching. My heart ached for her tribulations and rejoiced with her triumphs.
Her companions are well-suited to her. Elon, Colath and Jalila are Elves, Jareth is a human Wizard. The Elven society is intriguing, making me want to know more of it close up. Elon is wise, noble and caring, but not in such a way that makes him seem too perfect. These are people you would like to spend more time with. I'm anxious to read the next book.
A slight negative--about two-thirds of the way through, I began noticing some typographical errors such as omitted words, as if there were some missed sections in editing. These errors were noticeable because the rest of the book is so well edited. Still, I have to give it such a high rating because of the compelling story, endearing characters and noble, selfless actions that had me cheering and crying.
The Coming Storm is an excellent read. I look forward to further adventures of these five heroes.
Song of the Fairy Queen
5.0 out of 5 stars Enthralling
I bought this book because of the cover. It's a beautiful rendering of a fairy at war. She's armed with a bow and arrow and a fierce expression. I also liked the book's name; Song of the Fairy Queen. Intriguing. The eBook joined the 600+ other books on my Kindle, almost to disappear into oblivion.
The truth is: I'm not a fairy person To me, fairies are buzzing, excessively happy fripperies like Tinker-belle. I don't like frothy, frivolous females and this could have devolved into a showcase for one.
I'm so glad I read this book. Once into it, I found The Song enthralling. The fairy queen is exquisitely beautiful, a great warrior and tough as nails. An enticing combination. The book is a morality tale, a fight between good and evil where freedom and decency are the prizes. It's a wonderful love story with powerful central figures that you want to root for. The rest of the characters are enthralling, too, even King What's His Name, the bad guy.
At one point (22% on my Kindle), I thought, Can I finish this book? Will my heart give out if I keep reading? There's so much action and excitement that I had to put the book down for a while. But I kept reading, and the thrills kept spooling out until the very end.
The Song of the Fairy Queen reminded my of George R.R. Martin's work and his wonderful fantasy kingdoms. This is first rate fantasy and I highly recommend it.
I do have one question, which is more of an intellectual one than critical. How'd the Bad King get so bad? Was he a bad seed? A rotten apple? The product of an abusive childhood? I'd like to see why he turned out that way.
Now to charge on to Valerie Douglas's other work. I'm glad she's written a lot.
Heart of the Gods
Angela Babcock :
Loved this story! The plot and story itself was simply wonderful! The beginning is what really drew me in and honestly? Loved everything about this book, and the time frame it represented. This is a highly recommended read!
Linda Eble Swain on June 05, 2011 :
Wow...it's just an amazing book. I could see it as a movie in my mind...the book drew me in with the first chapter and instead of being in bed, I'm reading this - at least until my eyes give out and then I'll finish in the morning. Everything about it is just amazing. The characters are believable and draw you in until you feel as if you know them personally. A great read!