Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Book Review: The Serpent and the Rose by Kathleen Bryan

Genre: Fantasy
Pages: 316
Acquired: 4/17/10
Book of Your Shelf? Yes
Why I read it:
Series: The War of the Rose (1)

The Kingdom of Lys has an interesting form of magic. It is worked by knights, magicians, and the Ladies of the Isle. Using glass to concentrate and hold the magic they shape. They also hold the great responisiblity of keeping the Serpent imprisoned by holding the secret of his location as a sacred secret.

Averil has been trained as a Lady of the Isle but was called back home prematurely to help her father, who is the Duke of Quitaine. The Duke has good reasn te fear for the safety of his throne, so he wants his daughter home and wed to secure the succession of his lands. But when everyone's worst fears and more come to pass, she is forced to flee with a band of knights and Gereint.

Gereint is a farmboy, but not so plain and simple. He has magic of an unknown nature running through his veins. His mother, in a misguided effort to protect him, has forbidden him from seeking out the knights for training. He slips away one day to follow the knights and find his destiny. It takes him far from home where he meets Averil. When Averil is forced to run from the invaders, he goes with.

Their journey takes them to places that are made of myth and legend, and dark secrets are revealed and discovered. As they try to find safety and a return to their old ways, it dawns on them that much has been forgotten, and to win they must remember and learn.

A fantasy tale with a touch of christian story mixed with magic, I loved the characters. They were incredibly dynamic. Tere were many I loved and the ones I hated, I loved to hate. Their fourney is a fantastic one that kept the pages turning. The only draw back was that at times the point was driven home a little too hard. There is much to say for subtlety and at times it was lacking.


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