A fantasy romance novel that shows much promise as the kickoff to a series.


From the Legacy Trilogy series , Vol. 1

A princess must choose between her kingdom and her true love.

  Princess Alera, heiress to the throne of Hytanica, has reached a crossroads in her life. She has agreed to marry to benefit her kingdom. But Alera is displeased with her father’s choice of suitor, the egocentric and arrogant Lord Steldor. Selected for his firm hand and military skill, Steldor can expect to wield much power over the inquisitive and spirited princess–Hytanic tradition favors the rule of males, so Alera must settle down and defer to her leading man. As preparations for marriage are made, the return of a long-lost child of Hytanica, Narian, from the rival Cokyri people sends shockwaves through the kingdom–and Alera’s heart. The Cokyri are renowned for their violent and bloodthirsty ways, and Narian is welcomed warily by the masses. Alera is quick to warm to him–he is mysterious and daring, fearless and capable. And Narian takes her seriously. Their clandestine relationship leads Alera to take dangerous risks, especially when the Cokyrians’ plans to reclaim Narian as their own come to light. The looming conflict jeopardizes their nascent love affair, as well as the whole of Hytanica. The princess finds herself not only pitted between two suitors but forced to decide between her royal obligations and her heart’s deepest desire. Debut novelist Kluver’s solid world-building skills flesh out this dynamic coming-of-age romance with strong detail and cultural development. Alera is fiery and likable and will find favor among young adult readers. Lively secondary characters, with the exception of a somewhat flat depiction of Steldor, and sharp dialogue, combined with richly imagined Hytanic legend and history, keep the pace of this epic moving until the last scene. However, the tale’s abrupt cliffhanger leaves both major story lines frustratingly stalled until the sequel.

A fantasy romance novel that shows much promise as the kickoff to a series.

Pub Date: April 15, 2008

ISBN: 978-0-9802089-7-9

Page Count: -

Publisher: N/A

Review Posted Online: Jan. 14, 2011

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Abandoned by their mother, whose mental stability has been crumbling since her husband went west, Lyddie and her brother Charlie manage alone through a Vermont winter. But in the spring of 1844, without consulting them, the mother apprentices Charlie to a miller and hires Lyddie out to a tavern, where she is little better than a slave. Still, Lyddie is strong and indomitable, and the cook is friendly even if the mistress is cold and stern; Lyddie manages well enough until a run-in with the mistress sends her south to work in the mills of Lowell, Massachusetts, thus earning a better wage (in a vain hope of saving the family farm), making friends among the other girls enduring the long hours and dangerous conditions, and expanding her understanding of loyalty, generosity, and injustice (she already knows more than most people ever learn about perseverance). Knowing only her own troubled family, Lyddie is unusually reserved, even for a New Englander, With her usual discernment and consummate skill, Paterson depicts her gradually turning toward the warmth of others' kindnesses—Betsy reads Oliver Twist aloud and suggests the ultimate goal of Oberlin College; Diana teaches Lyddie to cope in the mill, setting an example that Lyddie later follows with an Irish girl who is even more naive than she had been; Quaker neighbors offer help and solace that Lyddie at first rejects out of hand. Deftly plotted and rich in incident, a well-researched picture of the period—and a memorable portrait of an untutored but intelligent young woman making her way against fierce odds.

Pub Date: March 1, 1991

ISBN: 0-525-67338-5

Page Count: 192

Publisher: Dutton

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2000

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Bagdasarian’s moving story of the little-told horror of the Armenian genocide is based on the recorded account by his great uncle. The narrative follows Vahan Kendarian from age 12 to 16, from a somewhat spoiled and confident school cut-up to a somber and steely young man. He watches as his brothers are shot and his sister takes poison and dies to avoid rape. He is molested himself, and nurses several companions to their deaths. He also builds a sense of his own inner character as he puts on many outward disguises, traveling from one dangerous situation to the next. If the narrative itself seems to wander and stumble through these experiences imparting little sense of direction, it does add to the mood of confusion, despair, and occasional unfounded hope. The lack of contextual material may frustrate some readers (WWI is not mentioned, and the presence of German and Russian military in Turkey not fully explained), but the short foreword does give just enough information to set the scene, and plunges readers, along with Vahan, into a terrifying situation they may not fully comprehend at first. There is very little material available to young readers on this subject. Kerop Bedoukian’s Some of Us Survived (1978) and David Kherdian’s Newbery Honor book The Road from Home (1979) are still in print, but this should find a new and appreciative readership. (Fiction. 12+)

Pub Date: Oct. 1, 2000

ISBN: 0-7894-2627-7

Page Count: 272

Publisher: DK Publishing

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1, 2000

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