25 of 27 people found the following review helpful
Sequel to The Lord of the Fading Lands.
Rainier vel'En Daris, King of the Fey and Rairen Soul, had literally stepped from the sky to claim Ellysetta "Ellie" Baristani, a woodcarver's daughter, as his queen. Ellie is being groomed for her new life among the nobility and the royal courts. Ellie still does not understand the horrible nightmares that plague her or the frightening powers within her; however, it has become very clear that her life is in danger.
The evil High Mage Vadim Maur has minions everywhere. His apprentice, Kolis Manza, almost has the proof needed to show that Ellie is the one for whom Vadim has searched over twenty years for. Kolis has gotten close to the mortal queen and Ellie's former fiancé. It is only a matter of time. Once proven, the High Mage will claim Ellie's soul. Using Ellie, Vadim will enslave the world.
***** Do not begin this book until you have read Lord of the Fading Lands. Otherwise you will not fully understand what is going on. Believe me when I say that fans of either Fantasy or Paranormal Romance novels will LOVE both of these books. I cannot stress hard enough to the men out there that they will enjoy these two titles.
Having said that; I found this title to be as awesome as the first. It ends in a very good place. The author may either stop there or continue onward. The action is mostly non-stop, so make sure you have plenty of time to read before you even open the cover. I see awards in this author's future. This is a highly addictive series and I hope to see more! *****
17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
on October 18, 2007
'Lady of Light and Shadows' is the second instalment in the duology about the Tairen Soul. This book definitely doesn't work on its own and would be very difficult to read as a first book, it follows immediately on from 'Lord of the Fading Lands' and continues the story of Rain and Ellie which was so gripping in that first instalment. The first book didn't finish at a particularly pivotal moment and the second instalment picks up straight up from that point and continues with the story as more and more depth and excitement is layered into the novel, including a previously mentioned character arriving to play a significant part in the action. It's a good thing that they have been published so closely together as they really don't work on their own; however, as a pair of books making one story, they are brilliant.
In this story Ellie's troubles increase as she continues to go through the complicated pre-marriage rituals. Each day of her life seems to become more and more complex with the difficulties between her and her family (mainly her mother) echoed by the political machinations between the King of Celieria, Rain Tairen Soul and the evil Mages of the Eld. Ellie's bridegroom, Rain Tairen Soul, is a fascinating character and she learns more about him as the book progresses; however Ellie is also learning more about herself and much of what she is learning looks bad. The narrator gives us insights into what is happening in Eld and we learn more about Ellie's provenance, much of the information seeming very worrying. How can Ellie be the good person that she seems with the history that she has had, and is she merely being positioned as Rain's mate in order to destroy the Fey from within?
We meet a few new characters in this book including a staunch new protector for Ellie but also the people who have caused her magical abilities to be shielded - and why. The evil forces are working in many different ways to capture Ellie and she is in danger from those whom she loves, both physical and emotional danger. A continual theme is whether Ellie is courageous or just trying to survive but she's a plucky heroine who soon realises that to receive what every young woman wishes for - the attention and devotion of Rain Tairen Soul - has a balancing amount of hardship.
In some ways Ellie's Fey quintet guard play less of a role in this story but her new champion proves a pivotal point in the plot as they start to realise who Ellie is and what her powers are. There is a huge final denouement scene where the magic of the fey shows its limitations and where Ellie is required to use her own resources and skills - but are they enough? There are some touching romantic scenes between Rain and Ellie as he continues the courtship but just as much time is given in the novel to the 'courtship' of the nobles and rulers of Celieria, trying to individually influence and encourage them to support Rain's needs.
As a standalone book this doesn't work but read alongside 'Lord of the Fading Lands' it's one of the most exciting fantasy books to have been published in a long time. The author's excellent writing style, the continually gripping nature of the narrative and the occasional light touches to leaven some of the gloom and despair are brilliant. Rain and Ellie are great heroes with faults and difficulties and confusion about their respective roles but with an undergirding of honesty and true natures which make their lives a joy to follow. This is excellent writing that should appeal to all who read it.
Originally published for Curled Up With A Good Book, [...] © Helen Hancox 2007
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on January 29, 2009
This is by far my favorite series!!! Everyone should at least try the first book, I promise you will be hooked! I have read tons of romance novels from Kresley Cole to J.R. Ward(which have great series as well) but none of the characters have touched my heart as much as as Ellysetta and Rain do.
The author did a fantastic job of creating a fantasy world, perhaps similar to Lord of the rings, but her focus is always on the main characters and her development of the hero and heroine is beautiful. Ellysetta and Rain are not perfect but together they become perfect( That sounds really cheesy)Their love will blow you away. Their devotion to one another, their support of each other, and their protection of one another is so richly drawn out by the author.Especially when the author uses the fey language of Rain's people, Its as if she has written a new language filled with love...
Ok Ok I know this has really turned into a cheese fest but if you want a description of the book read the other reviews, for me the book was all about the strong emotions that the characters evoked in me. I was on cloud nine the whole time I read this series ( It will seriously put you in such a great happy mood)
The author makes a note that she wrote this series as one book rather than 4 separate books, so although each ending is great and leaves you wanting more, you do get a strong sense of - this could have been great as just one 1000 page book-. I loved all the twists and turns and surprises in this book and I really loved how all the characters really came together. I cant wait for the next one!
This is a great new author with an amazing storytelling voice, I cannot wait to see what else she comes up with( I hope she stays within the fantasy realm) I will be really sad when this series is over. 5 Stars from me all the way!!!!
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on October 17, 2007
As I read the last chapters of Lady of light and shadows I closed the book and fell in silent awe for the imagination pouring out of C.L. Wilson's mind. In this second installment of the series I further more tasted the vast set-up of the worlds, its rich depth of the characters and the feeling that as I turned the pages I will discover something new. The plot lures with mysterious intrigue and darkness but also love that reaches out between Rain and Elly and the secondary cast of characters lifts this novel even to greater heights!
In Lady of light and shadows we meet Rain and Elly again, the courtship continues, the Celerian Lords still have many questions they want answered as the Mages reach out with their darkness and new characters introduce themselves with strong voices that need to be heard.
What a joy this novel has proven to be, I felt picked up by Rain and Elly and quickly found myself in their world again as the fragile moments of blossoming love shimmers between them it had an impact on me that swept me of my feet. If there is one thing that C.L. Wilson has a gift for it is to write with such emotion you can feel them vibrating from the pages and her imagination to describe a Fey race with their magic that I can see this in my mind's eye. Besides the romance, the mysteries that unfold themselves more, there is an action in this novel that rendered me breathless as I read the scenes. With also another love that holds me in its grip, two people, together yet apart. They speak of events in the past that has its rippling effect on the present as they remain in the dark. All aspects of this novel compels you to read page after page riding the waves of romance and action, wrapped in thrilling storylines.
C.L. Wilson takes her time to create the background and circumstances for Elly and Rain to shine as the strong characters they are, still the major secondary characters like the Fey quintet, Laurianna, Sol, Marissya, Dax and Gaelen vel Serranis each give their own magic to weave a tale that you can't finish and not talk about it. With the Fey language that enhances the true feel of the world, I love the titles like Shei'tani and Shei'tan, the meaning of it and ads more feeling to certain thoughts or rituals. The ending stills the hunger for romance as you feel that new adventures beckon for Rain, Elly and all the inhabitants of the Celerian and Tairen world. There is still much to be told and C.L. Wilson made an impressive statement with her two-book-release Lord of the fading lands and Lady of light and shadows.
Sometimes a story demands your attention, sometimes a novel demands to be read immediately and in the end rewards you with a stunning tale. Lady of light and shadows is such a novel!
Courtesy of Realms on our Bookshelves
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Picking up right where Lord of the Fading Lands left off, Lady of Light and Shadows begins the morning after the Queen of the Fey is hunted in her dreams by the dark being she calls the Shadow Man. Ellysetta knows that it's only a matter of time before she has to face her darkest enemy. Ellysetta's fiance and truemate, Rain Tairen Soul, has vowed to protect her, but even he doesn't know the depth of the evil that stalks his mate. Rain also has the added pressure of trying to protect his people, who are dying, and keeping the borders between Ellie's country and that of the nearby by Elden Mages closed to protect them all from the dangerous magic the Mages wield. Lady of Light and Shadows is the second book in C.L. Wilson's Tairen Soul series. This story gets more involved in the politics between Celieria, Eld, and the Fading Lands, as well as in the origins of Ellysetta's birth. It's more magical, more fantastical, and more enchanting than the first book--which is something I didn't even think was possible. These books are the perfect blend of fantasy and paranormal romance and are so engrossing you won't want to put them down. I'd suggest this series to anyone who enjoys magical beings and battles between the dark and the light. Now if only October would come a little faster so that the next two books (King of Sword and Sky and Queen of Song and Souls) would be released, I'd be all set.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Plot Summary: The action picks up immediately where book one left off. Rain and Ellysetta are trapped by protocol into waiting for their wedding, but each day reveals a new danger for Ellie. The Mage leader has identified her at last, and he plots to kidnap her from her fiancé, the Fey Lord. Rain and Ellie's relationship is not all smooth sailing, and things get even worse when some of her family relationships suffer too. While all of this is going on, the politics within the kingdom are leaning toward embracing relations with the evil Eld, even at the expense of losing their longtime allies, the Fey.
The best piece of advice I have for readers starting the Tairen Soul series is to clear out your schedule before you open one of these books. Don't start this right before bed or you might be up all night. C. L. Wilson's first book, Lord of the Fading Lands, absolutely knocked me for a loop, and it stands as the best romantic fantasy that I've read in a long time. Lady of Light and Shadows is a worthy sequel that had me flipping pages at a manic pace, but the romance wasn't quite as heart-stopping this time. It was still very hot and involved, but the focus went to the villains and their machinations. The tension was unbearable, and it builds to a nail-biting climax.
This book marks the first time I can envision Ellysetta as an equal mate for the Fey Lord Rain. She grows tremendously from the mousy little peasant girl we met in book one, and she starts thinking for herself. I think Rain will have his hands full now that Ellie has come into her own sense of worth.
I highly recommend this series for romance fans. The fantasy elements are well done, but that's not why I read these particular books. I read them because Rain is an extremely appealing alpha hero, and those can be hard to find, and I also read them because Ms. Wilson excels at suspenseful, tension-filled pacing and plotting. It's all about hot romance and constant danger.
There are two more books in the Tairen Soul series. Next up is King of Sword and Sky (Tairen Soul), and then Queen of Song and Souls (Tairen Soul).
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on October 8, 2009
This is the second book in the Tairen Soul series, the sequel to "Lord of the Fading Lands." It picks up right where the first book left off, obviously. This is partially, I suspect, because LotFL and LoLaS were originally written as one book but published in separate volumes.
After reading the first book, I thought it really stood well on its own without the second half, but after reading "Lady" I can definitely attest that it is much, much better when both books are considered together. "Lady" is a definite improvement over its prequel. It's in the second half here that the story really shines through, and shine it does. Revelations abound, connections are revealed, intricate twists in the story are expounded upon, and the intricacy of the world is really impressed on the readers.
Character development is also much stronger than the first book. The sheer amount of emotional volume, particularly the anguish and conflicted loyalties of the main characters was breathtaking to behold. There were times when I hated a character so darn much, hatred crossed all the way over into awesomeness. This was particularly true of Lauriana, who pissed me off to the moon and back, yet was still very understandable as a character, and while I don't want to spoil the ending, I'll say that her character arc came to a very satisfying finish in the last chapters. Vadim Maur, as despicable as he was, was really entertaining to read about. I think Maur's chapters were my favorites in this entire book. He kind of reminds me of Terry Goodkind's Darken Rahl, just as interesting but not quite as gratuitously evil.
The early chapters were a bit less exciting than the first book, though I wouldn't say boring, but the middle and end were basically one long, explosive climax. The pulse-pounding final chapters I especially enjoyed. I liked Gaelan in particularly, who managed to be an antivillain, comic relief, an interesting character, and to have the best dialogue in the whole book, all by himself.
I think I should warn about some things that might put perspective readers off, however. Despite what fans will say about how the sexual content is "mild" and "tasteful"...well, to be honest, it's neither. The love scenes in this book are much, much more graphic than in the first one, crossing straight over into erotica territory. I'm not bothered by this, but if reading multiple (graphic) descriptions of sex is beyond your comfort level, keep it in mind.
Dialogue, particularly Rain and Ellysetta's, is still only average, though Gaelan's quips are refreshing organic and entertaining. These books are still nothing that I would call original, and the characters hypersexual behavior can be a bit annoying some points. However, none of that is really enough to subtract from my overall opinion of this book, which is very high.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
This is the sequel to "The Lord of the Fading Lands." And, take my word for it, DO NOT read this book until you have read the earlier volume. This book literally starts where the earlier one ends. It would take much of this book to come to understand the context in which the story takes place.
That said, this is even better than the first volume. I was somewhat annoyed to end up in the middle of things after having read the first volume. But this builds exquisitely on what came before. The mystery of Ellysetta (Ellie) Baristani, purportedly a woodcutter's daughter, finally gets answered, after the author has cleverly given us clues leading us in precisely the wrong direction as to her true nature and identity. We come to know further Rainier vel'en Daris, the Fey King, who has come at her call (a long story well told in the first volume) to become truemates. Their travails as they try to become king and queen are the major component of this book.
Also involved are some very wicked folks, who want to use Ellie to get to the Fey King. Then, the other characters, from Ellie's family to the evildoers, Mages, to people who become minions of the Mage leader. A quintet of Fey warriors protects Ellie. . . .
The book also delights as it reveals to readers the strengthening of Ellie's power (she is no woodcutter's daughter, that's for sure!), until at the climax she comes to fully realize exactly how strong her magic is. The book ends, with the clear indication that the King and his Queen have found happiness with one another--and future action is ensured. Indeed, as I conclude the above lines, I will order the next book in this series. Those who enjoy fantasy and fantasy romances will probably get a real buzz out of this book.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on November 5, 2008
This story picks right up where Lord of the Fading Lands left off, and is just as good. Definitely need to read the first one to understand what's going on in this book. The action keeps moving as we're introduced to new characters and getting to know the main characters (good and evil) more in depth. I can't wait to find out how the story of Ellie's "real" parents plays out! This book also brings into play more of the politics that is going on between the different cultures, specifically the fey and celearians, but we also learn more about the eld and the mages. In the midst of it all, Rain is still romancing Ellie in hopes she'll accept their bond as lifemates. Finished this book in just over a day, I couldn't put it down, as I was swept up in this new world. I love that the main characters are discovering each other and don't always do everything perfectly. Ellie has finally come to terms with the idea that she has magic within her, and while she doesn't understand how she can possibly save the fey and tarian, she's willing to try despite her fears. Rain, who hates the mage, has to come to terms with the fact that Ellie has been mage marked. I am desperately waiting for my copy of King of Sword and Sky to arrive (I have it on hold at the library and also ordered a copy from amazon, I need it now!). I don't know how I'll be able to wait until June for the Queen of Song and Soul, which will be bittersweet as I can't wait to find out what happens, but will be so sad for this story to come to an end! All I can say is read this series, you won't be disappointed!!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on January 9, 2011
AWESOME AWESOME BOOK! I thought the first book (Lord of the Fading Lands) was great, but this one was even better. It put new meaning into the "could not put it down" category. If you love fantasy, magic, romance, action, intrigue and great writing then I highly recommend this book, and I am on to the next one in the series.
In the first book the Tairen Soul, Rain, king of the fey, literally dropped from the sky to claim Ellysetta as his truemate. He has left the Fading Lands of the fey on a mission to find a way to save both the fey and the Tairen knowing that what he seeks lies in the city where he finds Ellysetta. As the mortal daughter of a woodcarver she has been fascinated with the fey all of her life, but now is thrown into a world she never dreamed of being a part of. Haunted from childhood by dreams and visions she has never understood, it is in this second book that we come to understand just what is hidden in her past and is a threat to her future.
This author has the ability to write in a way that introduces many characters in a complex world and yet somehow it is not difficult to understand their world. The characters are amazing from the fey warrior who allows a kitten named "Love" to ride around on his shoulder because she is afraid of magic to the incredible battle scenes that use magic and physical skill in a way that you simply see it all happening. The fey in this book are simply wonderful. There is a theme among these warriors of honor, loyalty, and love that makes them so real. As fighters, they are to put it mildly, bigger than life. I find it amazing that there are so many things going on in this story including political intrigue, terrible magic ability of the mage's who plot against Allysetta for reasons one must read the book to find out, the beautiful sensual love story (and this book is NOT YA), and yet it all flows as one great tale. Loved it.
Great read and a world I am going to hate to leave when I finish this series