When Wayland North brings rain to a region that has been dry for over ten years, he's promised anything he'd like as a reward. He chooses the village elders daughter, sixteen-year-old Sydelle Mirabel, who is a skilled weaver and has an unusual knack for repairing his magical cloaks. Though Sydelle has dreamt of leaving home, she's hurt that her parents would relinquish her so freely and finds herself awed and afraid of the slightly ragtag wizard who is unlike any of the men of magic in the tales she's heard. Still, she is drawn to this mysterious man who is so fiercely protective of her and so reluctant to share his own past.
The pair rush towards the capitol, intent to stop an imminent war, pursued by Reuel Dorwan (a dark wizard who has a keen interest in Sydelle) and plagued by unusually wild weather. But the sudden earthquakes and freak snowstorms may not be a coincidence. As Sydelle discovers North's dark secret and the reason for his interest in her and learns to master her own mysterious power, it becomes increasingly clear that the fate of the kingdom rests on her fingertips. She will either be a savior, weaving together the frayed bonds between Saldorra and Auster, or the disastrous force that will destroy both kingdoms together.
Two words: Totally Amazing.
I'd just like to say I did not put this book down the whole time I was reading it. I'm serious. I read it in the morning getting ready, on the bus, walking and almost hitting a tree, finding the keys to opening the door, plopping down on the bed to finish the ending. This is an amazing debut by Alexandra Bracken and i'll be sure to read anything more of hers A.S.A.P
Now this book! It's the kind of book that makes you WISH, you were special enough to live in it and have adventures and live life like the characters do (except North). The plot is especially unique, many elements came out in the middle and in the end that I had not expected at all!
Anyway :D. Next was my absolute love for the characters. Sydelle (Syd to North, Delle to Henry) was an absolutely likeable character. She was compassionate but stubborn, caring yet frusterating. She was sypathetic but knew when to lay down the law with North and at least try to control him. She's a sixteen-year-old girl who dreams of leaving her small village and exploring the world. Who doesn't wanna do that? Especially at an age where you can't.
And North. Oh god North. I warned you in the previous post, I would write a whole paragrpah about him. He is just a wildly enjoyable character. He made me laugh constantly, and also made me tear up by the pain he has to go through everyday. While his intentions were not always for the best, he's a good person who's struggling with something horrible. He's an amazingly funny and charming guy, even when he's drunk! He really is fiercely protective of her, but it's an admirable quality in him that just proves how much he cares for her.
Alexandra Bracken made up a world that I wanted to live in. That's hard. World-building is tough stuff. And to make such an amazing world, complete with mountains and cities and small villages and dirt paths (AND a map), is absolutely incredible!
The writing was exquiste, the world amazing, the characters wonderful and everything was just over-all amazing. Also, the cover is BEAUTIFUL.
It's a story of romance and fantasy, of taking risks and chances. Of a curse and a war. Of amazingness!
Buy it! And enjoy!