Saturday, May 24, 2014

Shadow Hand, by Anne Elisabeth Stengl

Title: Shadow Hand

Series: Tales of Goldstone Wood

Paperback: 416 pages

Publisher: Bethany House 

Date: March 4, 2014

Language: English

About the book: By her father's wish, Lady Daylily is betrothed to the Prince of Southlands. Not the prince she loves, handsome and dispossessed Lionheart, but his cousin, the awkward and foolish Prince Foxbrush. As her wedding day dawns, Daylily flees into the dangerous Wilderlands, her only desire to vanish from living memory.

But Foxbrush, determined to rescue his betrothed, pursues Daylily into a new world of magic and peril, a world where vicious Faerie beasts hold sway, a world invaded by a lethal parasite.

About the author: Anne Elisabeth Stengl makes her home in Raleigh, North Carolina, where she lives with her husband, Rohan, a passel of cats, and one long-suffering dog. When she's not writing, she enjoys Shakespeare, opera, and tea, and studies piano, painting, and pastry baking. She studied illustration at Grace College and English literature at Campbell University. She is the author of Heartless, Veiled Rose, Moonblood, and Starflower. Heartless and Veiled Rose have each been honoured with a Christy Award, and Starflower was voted winner of the 2013 Clive Staples Award.

My thoughts: Shadow Hand, the sixth book in the Tales of Goldstone Wood series is suppose to be an amazing read, but unlike most people who have read this book, I had a really hard time getting through it. I picked it up and put it down a couple of times before just sitting there and reading it. I don't think it had anything to do with the storyline ~ girl loves boy, boy loves girl, girl betrothed to another boy. It is like most love stories that people would enjoy reading, but I guess not me. I do enjoy reading a typical love story, but I think it had something to do with the character names and the place where the story was held. I guess you could say that fantasy books aren't my cup of tea.

The story begins with Lady Daylily and Prince Foxbrush getting ready for their wedding. Unfortunately it did not happen due to the fact that Lady Daylily ran away. This is where I have to say the book took a turn for me. In the woods, or another "place" (Wilderlands) I couldn't quite make it out, she ran into different creatures and animals that could talk to her. Not only were the names hard for me to keep reading, but the names of some of the places and creatures just didn't mesh well with me. Some of the names in the story are Lionheart, Wolfsbane, Rose Red, Tortoiseshell and Nidawi. Some of the sames of places in the book are Farthestshore, Wilderlands, and Middlecrescent. As you can see, these aren't typical names used in our everyday world.

Another thing that I just couldn't get with was the part where they were in the forest (Lady Daylily had to be found) and different animals or creature type things were able to communicate with them, show them things that they wouldn't be able to see on their own, and partly control them. Yes I know, these are all things that would take place in a fantasy story. 

Technically, I could go on and on, but I don't want to tear the book apart and make it look like it isn't worth reading. It is a very easy read. And one can easily get into and follow the story. If you like fantasy fiction, then this book will probably interest you and you will like the story. But for me, who isn't too keen on fantasy stories, not so much. Part of me wonders if I had read the other books if it would have made a difference.

This book was given to me by Bethany House for my honest review.

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