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The Armor of Light: The Wolfchild Saga Paperback – August 31, 2011
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Hoover's writing is lyrical and perfectly suited to the genre of young adult fantasy. The second of seven books in the Wolfchild Saga begins with the gathering of the evil C'Tan and her spies at the mage school where Ember is desperately trying to gain control of her magic. All that rests on Ember's shoulders is the fate of the entire world.
Unique to this series is the fact the three main characters are all women. Ember and Kayla, although never having met, have an odd connection. While the servant of S'Kotos, C'Tan is desperately trying to destroy them both in an attempt to free her soul from the evil Guardian who holds it. Hoover holds nothing back, skillfully weaving a story painted with action, suspense, love, magic and fantasy.
I'm not a huge fan of fantasy and science fiction, but I have to admit, Karen E. Hoover has me thoroughly hooked, anxiously awaiting the next book, The Emerald Wolf, which is rumored to be released within the next few months. I can not only recommend The Armor of Light to everyone, I can safely say your children will devour this book, I know I did, and I'm 49. It can't be long before Hoover's books find their way to the silver screen. They are that good.
I'm giving The Armor of Light 5 out of 5 stars. Loved the writing, the story and where the story's headed. Not to mention, there is not one single inappropriate scene in the entire book. You just can't go wrong there. Hoover's books are finding their spot on the shelves of my library.
I have to admit I wanted to dislike the second book for not being a standalone. That lasted all of three chapters. Then the author began introducing new situations and new magical phenomena as she ramped up the tension. All the color and detail of the first book wove itself into the second tapestry.
One storyline features romance with competing suitors, heart-breaking betrayal, magical battles, death and hopelessness. I cried through certain chapters. Evil gets its due in this book with a storyline fleshing out the antagonists and making one of them seem sympathetic--in a twisted way. The main story focuses on learning, friendship, trust and free-will in a case of nature versus nurture. When hidden evil undermines the good influences, conflicted characters must run or face-off with betrayers.
With exception of some well-deserved dread at expectation the three stories will come together in a disastrous way, little feels formulaic about evil's bid to gain control of the magic keystones that created Rasann. When the storylines come together with a crash, the elements combine with dark magic to rage against the magic academy that serves to protect the world. A battle ensues that could end in the death of the only person able to mend the fraying magic holding Rasann together.
As trials, joy and sorrow transform the characters in the book, so you will be transformed in the reading. If not for the lack of adequate descriptions in the beginning, I would give The Armor of Light 5 stars. The ending resolves most of the conflicts in a way that feels satisfying to the reader even though the characters suffer great loss and face a terrible challenge, setting a difficult path for future books in the series. I look forward to the journey.