Wednesday, April 15, 2009
Another book review?? Well....it's certainly about time!! Especially since it's the Once Upon a Time season!! Wicked Lovely by Melissa Marr (352 pgs, Harper Collins, 2008) could probably fall into more than one Fantasy Subgenre. Urban Fantasy is probably where I would leave it. Is there a better way to kick off the Once Upon a Time Challenge than with book about Faeries? I think not!
The Summer King knelt before her. "Is this what you freely choose, to risk winter's chill?" She watched him -- the boy she'd fallen in love with these past weeks. She'd never dreamed he was something other than human, but now his skin glowed as if flames flickered just under the surface, so strange and beautiful she couldn't look away. "It's what I want." "You understand that if you are not the one, you'll carry the Winter Queen's chill until the next mortal risks this? And you'll warn her not to trust me?" He paused, glancing at her with pain in his eyes.
Every since Aislinn could remember, she's had The Sight. Like her Grandmother and her mother before her, Aislinn has the ability to see Faeries. You see, Faeries inhabit the world we live in....only we can't see them. But Faeries aren't cute little creatures Walt Disney would have us believe. Oh no. Faeries are mischievous at best. At worst, they are cruel creatures that have no sense of right or wrong. No moral compass.
Aislinn's Grandmother taught her at an early age, the only way to survive in a world with The Sight is to not let anyone know about it. Especially, the Fey. Never stare at the faeries; never speak to the faeries, but most importantly, Don't EVER attract their attention. Aislinn took this advice to heart, and it worked for her...until the day the Summer King started stalking her.
You see, Keenan, the Summer King, needs to find his Summer Queen. He has been searching for 9 centuries and has yet to find the woman who will break the spell his mother, the Winter Queen, has placed on him. His powers are bound, and unless he finds the Summer Queen, Summer will eventually fade away and the Earth will grow colder. Keenan believes that Aislinn is the one he is searching for, but now he has to convince her to take a chance.
I love a good faerie story. Especially one that is this well-researched. Marr begins each chapter with a snippet of faerie legend. And she has created some great characters in Donia, the Winter girl and Keenan, the Summer King. It was their story that really sucked me into this book. Donia, the once mortal girl who took a chance and lost, was tragic and yet endearing. Her love for Keenan, even after she found she wasn't meant to be his queen was almost heartbreaking. For me, I didn't appreciate Aislinn until later in the book. She was a bit too timid and mild at first. But when her back was against the wall, she came out swinging....and that's a sign of a great female protagonist!!
As with most fantasy books these days, there is never a solid ending. They all seem to be under the category of series...and this one is no exception. I find myself entrenched in yet another series! This was a quick read, but a good one nonetheless. I'm really glad I chose to start this series.....it left me wanting more....so I guess Marr did her job well!! 4.5/5