Author: Elissa Sussman
Age Group: Teen/Young Adult
Series: Stray, book one
Star Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
The bottom line: A beautifully tender, magical debut, Stray completely stole my heart--I loved it! Highly recommended for fans of high fantasy, fairy tales, and stories with strong heroines! Wonderful!
This book was given to me by Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.
Aishlynn has always wanted a happily ever after--to follow The Path and marry, and to prosper. But when the magic that she and all women are born with finally grows to be too much for her to control, her dreams are shattered. She is forced to become a Fairy Godmother to a princess. Trying to make the best of her desolate lot, she is forced to search deep down inside herself for the strength to become her own hero.. Because forces more powerful than she are brewing, and they want her for their own dark purposes..
What I enjoyed:
-The premise of this novel was amazing--a magical princess forced to become a fairy godmother, fighting to accept herself? I was sold!
The pacing of this novel was breakneck--I was enchanted and drawn in from the very first chapter, and I loved it
-I loved Sussman's languid, luxurious prose that reminded me of an old fairy tale, or a tale that had been lovingly passed down from generation to generation--it made the story all the more interesting to me
-Sussman's frightening, beautiful, dark world where women are born with powerful magic, but restricted to using it--I was repulsed, and drawn to it, at the same time, and I loved every minute of it
-Aishlynn, the strong young woman who becomes a hero--I really enjoyed her, because she was beautifully, lovingly rendered, human and flawed, and I cheered for her--she was the real selling point of this book for me, as I really related to her--I loved her character development
-I also enjoyed the way the world's social hierarchy was structured--the way everyone had a place in Aishlynn's world, but not necessarily a happy one
-Brigid, Rhys, and Elanor
-Linnea--I really enjoyed her as well, and I liked the relationship between her and Aishlynn
-I loved the ending, with a tantalizing promise for more tales--I can't wait to read more of Elissa Sussman's work!
What could've been better:
-There was absolutely nothing I didn't love about this gorgeously rendered, beautiful fairy tale for modern readers!
Stray will be a favorite that I will never forget--simply wonderful. Next on deck: The History Keepers: The Storm Begins by Damian Dibben!