Monday, June 18, 2012

Jenna Black, Shadowspell

Title: Shadowspell
Series: Faeriewalker Trilogy Book 2
Author: Jenna Black
Rating: Five Siren Stones

Genre: Fantasy Young Adult
Key-words: Fairies, Wild Hunt, Avalon
Length:  Novel 
ISBN: 978-0312575946
Price:  (Print) $9.99
Publisher:  St. Martin's
Reviewer:  Kayden McLeod

On top of spending most of her time in a bunker like safe house and having her dates hijacked by a formidable Fae bodyguard, Faeriewalker Dana Hathaway is in for some more bad news: the Erlking and his pack of murderous minions known as the Wild Hunt have descended upon Avalon. With his homicidal appetite and immortal powers, the Erlking has long been the nightmare of the Fae realm. A fragile treaty with the Faerie Queen, sealed with a mysterious spell, is the one thing that keeps him from hunting unchecked in Avalon, the only place on Earth where humans and Fae live together. Which means Dana’s in trouble, since it’s common knowledge that the Faerie Queen wants her – and her rare Faeriewalker powers – dead. The smoldering, sexy Erlking’s got his sights set on Dana, but does he only seek to kill her, or does he have something much darker in mind?

Shadowspell is a titillating tale, bound to draw you into the new world with an exciting cast of characters.

I found Shadowspell on sale, and though I hadn’t read the first book nor did the bookstore carry it, I picked it up, because Jenna Black rang a bell with me, I just didn’t remember why. When I got home, I found her Watchers in the Night on my shelves, which is an adult geared novel. I just hadn’t associated YA with her.

And am I glad I brought this book home! I’ve been reading a lot of fae related fiction lately, but Shadowspell stood out from the crowd along with Julie Kagawa’s Iron Fey series, with its daring edge, unexpected twists and a keen sense of originality that strayed from the tried and true. Even without having read Glimmerglass, the author wrote the story that just because I hadn’t read the back story leading up to this book, I wasn’t left feeling clueless and lost in the references to prior events in the Faeriewalker Trilogy.

Though the lead character from which the story is voiced, Dana, has realistic flaws, she had a backbone, the determination to see her decisions through, and the sense to accept the consequences of her calculated risks. One of my biggest complaints about YA heroines as of late, is their overall weak personas: the co-dependence, and nearly constant foolhardy mistakes that suggest their brains have became defective upon meeting the hero. Dana impressed me from the first page, until the last, regardless of her occasional misstep in the name of what is right.

Suffice to say, the moment I leave work this evening, I will heading back to the bookstore to pick up the third installment of the Faeriewalker Trilogy, Siren Song.

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