A talented young girl realizes her magical power in the fantasy world of Altilaan.
Ever since Tolkien and Lewis delineated the boundaries of the fantasy genre in the middle of the last century, the field–to its detriment–has largely belonged to men. This book–written by a woman and featuring a strong female protagonist–represents a unique and welcome addition to the genre. The smartly written story focuses on the exploits of Ellyana, or â€œElly,” a beautiful young magician coming into her own. At the opening, Elly boasts some impressive abilities: She can fly with wings that sprout from her back, transform into a beautiful bird, read minds, melt metal and start fires. But these skills represent only the tip of the iceberg, for Elly is destined to become a sorceress of unimaginable power. She embarks on a journey to discover the meaning behind a vision that haunts her dreams and meets Sebastian, prince of Altilaan and heir to the throne. Their meeting proves to be fortuitous because Elly is prophesized to be the one to assure and protect Sebastian’s eventual rule. At the prince’s palace, Elly undertakes a regimen of rigorous training, but quickly discovers that she has fallen under the control of those who would drive Sebastian from power. The author tells the tale with confidence and aplomb, and has a knack for believable dialogue that nicely complements Elly’s estimable descriptive powers. In addition, the characters are complex and fully developed.
An impressive new fantasy talent.