I’ve done a combined post for The Luthiel’s Song series by Robert Fanney. Currently it only consists of two books thus far, Dreams of the Ringed Vale and War of the Mists. The third book, The Nightmares of Winter, is due out in October of 2011.I tried to keep spoilers out of the second book’s review so those that are looking into the first don’t find any surprises.
Publisher: Dark Forest Press
Page Count: 328
Luthiel’s Song is an epic fantasy novel for young adults. It is the first in a series of seven. Below is a description of the story… First Summer’s Eve has come and all elves celebrate as the black moon’s shadow fades from the world. It is also Luthiel’s fifteenth birthday. With it come two extraordinary and dangerous surprises: a Wyrd Stone, its silvery heart a window into a world of dreams and nightmares, and a Blade Dancer, dreaded protector of the Faelands, who bears a dark message. Instead of celebration, Luthiel is given a terrible choice: if she does nothing, someone she loves deeply will die. Or to save a life, she can break the most perilous law of the Faelands, and venture alone to the Vale of Mists. If she chooses the journey, she must race Othalas — eldest and most feared of all the werewolves — past great back spiders who weave webs out of nightmares, through glittering mists with the power to reshape flesh, and at last into death by the teeth of dark and ancient Vyrl, who feed on the blood of elves. Either choice will bring death — unless Luthiel can find the secret in her remarkable Stone, a secret that even the nightmares fear.
After a tremendously long wait to actually get a hold of this book I finally managed to download it to my Kindle, and got to read it. I can honestly say that I wasn’t disappointed at all, I loved it! This is an epic fantasy novel that has a light feel to it. I know that sounds odd, but when I think of epic fantasy I tend to feel a slight weight of all the details. This doesn’t have that weight, and in a way it seems almost effortless in the way it weaves it’s story. The world has a rich history and brings it’s own personal depth that helps solidify the plot and makes it feel real. The characters themselves also have depth and are easy to feel for. Luthiel is a wonderfully strong and brave girl who does what needs to be done to ensure the prosperity of the people. She’s realistic in her description and reactions to all that reveals itself to her, and that has made her one of my favorites. It’s refreshing to see a main character who isn’t over dramatic or overly tough, she’s simply a normal girl dealing with what she’s handed and she hands it in a way that’s inspiring. My other two favorite characters are Othalas and Ecthellien. All the characters have their own depth and energy in the story but those two are fantastic and I felt myself extremely attached to them by the end. The creatures are different then in other epic fantasies that I’ve read as well, while some may be famliar in some way they are portrayed in an original light or given personal back stories that make you set them aside as different.
Overall this is beautifully written book and Fanney created a wonderful girl in Luthiel that provides an example of the strength that is touching and aspiring. I recommend this to fantasy fans and those who enjoy a strong realistic main character.
Publisher: Dark Forest Press
Page Count: 346
She chose to die in her sister’s place and yet she lived. Luthiel, just 15 years old, made a brave peace with the dreaded Vyrl of the Vale of Mists. Now she must face an army sent to destroy them.
With her companions — the werewolf Othalas, the dragon Melkion, the sorcerer Mithorden, a Vyrl named Ecthellien, and the elf Vaelros who would love her — Luthiel races back to the angry faelands to beg forgiveness for monsters.
Who, if any, will survive the journey? For the Vale is surrounded by the webs of Widdershae, and the only other path leads to the Red Moon — where an ancient evil waits in the flames.
Beyond the Vale, the home she left is not the same. Armies march for vengeance. Powers play their hands in a game of ages. In the sky something evil stirs. Rumors of a dark prophecy. Whispers of a “Blood Witch.” And signs foretelling an ancient doom terrible enough to destroy worlds.
First off let me say while I love novels that can be considered epic fantasy there are few that I love within a few chapters, and there are even fewer that I get attached to and read in only a few days. To me that’s a feat that needs to be mentioned and shows the amount of talent that Fanney possesses.
This book is as rich as the first and it gives more life and depth to an already wonderful world. The plot has an interesting twist to it that made it even more interesting. I really enjoyed the direction in which Fanney took the story and how he incorporated the world’s myths into the story. It adds even more depth and you get a better feel of how the people of this world see the events and how they feel about Luthiel, the Vyrl and the myths and legends involve. The characters has excellent development over the course of the plot, and you can truly get a feel for how everything has effected them and changed them. I will say that I did loose a favorite character of mine (no I won’t say which one) and I nearly cried but I ended up gaining a few more, that while they didn’t take his place exactly they did make a place for themselves and will stick with me. Luthiel continues to be a wonder and is just as strong as she was in the first book. I found myself a tad jealous of her strength and bravery in the face of something so large, and I loved when characters make me feel that way.
Overall Fanney did a magnificent job with this book, just as he did with his first. I can’t wait for the third one to come out because I’m dying to know what is going to happen.