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Bonded: Book One of the ShadowLight Saga, an Epic Fantasy Adventure by [Matthews, Mande]
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Bonded: Book One of the ShadowLight Saga, an Epic Fantasy Adventure Kindle Edition

4.3 out of 5 stars 114 customer reviews

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Length: 303 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
Page Flip: Enabled Age Level: 12 - 18

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Editorial Reviews

Review

FANTASTY WRITING AT ITS BEST!
"Bonded is an intriguing, addicting immersion into lives of young heroes and heroines making their way in a beautiful but dangerous world. With rich descriptions of fantastic places and people--their struggles and celebrations--this is fantasy writing at its best!" - Kindle Bestseller: Ann Mauren, author of In the Spotlight: Mayne Attraction

Product Details

  • File Size: 3246 KB
  • Print Length: 303 pages
  • Publication Date: December 13, 2011
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B006M40YWM
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #90,954 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Bonded is a wonderful fantasy book that has everything that you would want in this genre: adventure, magic, strange new lands, evil that must be defeated, a little romance, humor, and a fantastic new hero and heroine to start this trilogy off right. Never a dull moment in this book, the reader will be drawn into this new world that Mande Matthews has created. The characters are well-developed and very likeable. By the end of this book, you will be eagerly awaiting the next. A wonderful start to this trilogy, hopefully the next one will be coming soon!
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Life was never simple for Astrid dealing with isolation, loneliness and a destiny most would run from but her inner strength and resolve kept her fighting to survive the Shadow. I enjoyed reading about Norse Mythology and the odd translation thrown in from time to time but initially I was overwhelmed by the overload of information. The world building was amazing but I struggled to absorb it all as I felt it was more like reading a documentary rather than experiencing it with the characters. There was quite a few battle scenes and the relationship between Erik, Emma and Hallad was explored in depth yet the relationship between Astrid and Hallad was left to the end. I understand that Astrid could not speak out loud but I would have liked to have seen more telepathic communication between the two main characters cementing their bond further. I found myself skipping over some parts of the story to find the battle scenes though overall I did enjoy reading this book.
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Format: Kindle Edition
I first came across The Light Keepers-a prequel to Bonded on Kindle for FREE, and decided to check it out. I read it and found it to be a great introduction of characters to the Shadow Light Saga. Therefore, decided to give Bonded a try.
For a book under five dollars, Bonded was a great fantasy read! The world and the plot that Mande Matthews created was refreshing; and each character stood out on their own. I love a great fantasy book that offers an epic adventure to discovering oneself; with subtle romances, and variety colors of profound emotions. Throughout the book, from the time Holland and Swan meet; though it is rather embarrassing for me to say, I went on an emotional ride with both of them ... well ... more like ALL of the characters. However, I felt more for Holland and Swan because of the situation they were both placed in and the pressure that was both put upon them. To be honest, there was a certain part of the book that was unforeseen and caught me by surprise, yet, for me that was the charm of the book-unpredictable! I am looking forward to the next chapter to the Shadow Light Series!
-Cee's Goodread review
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Mande Matthews's writing is characterized by a smooth, capable writing style that ranges from matter-of-fact to lyrical as required by the situation. Her strong and complex characters are fun to journey with as they traverse Matthews' own variant of ancient Scandinavia, meeting "real life" versions of many of its beings, such as Valkyries and Dwarfs and Elves. Both high drama and comedy alternate -- and we all know that the former without the latter is hard to take. The two parallel plotlines -- Hallad's struggle to care for his mute sister Swan (shown on the cover), and Erik's quest with his brother Rolf the Skald to regain his true love Emma (Hallad's sister, who can talk to animals), both kept me clicking the "next page" button on my Kindle 2. Lord Lothar is the kind of villain you love to hate.

Certain stylistic decisions, such as substituting "Nei" for "No," and using Norse-sounding versions of certain words (Vestr for West, etc.) were particularly charming and gave the book a distinct feel that I enjoyed. Norse mythology made a nice change of pace.

The metaphysical aspects of this book, regarding the gods good and bad, the Shadow, Bonding, and dimensional travel, are highly complex, and I will need to read the book a second time to understand as well as I like. Suffice to say that Mande Matthews has created a complex magic system suited to development the multiple volumes the ShadowLight Saga will eventually contain.

I have heard rumors that the next book in this series is close to completion. I can't wait to get it on my Kindle.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book has led me to conclude that Norse mythology in fantasy books is entirely underrated. I had so much fun reading this and experienced such a wide range of emotions. It was different from other books I've read in its fresh take on the Nordic legends and its storyline and premise and I am very, very excited for Broken coming this year!

The plot:

This book starts off with a lot of questions--who is Swan? Who's after her? Why can Hal hear her in his head? We are given a lot of answers, but a few new questions by the end that only serve to entice one for the next book. I greatly enjoyed this story and the characters and I was rooting for them, cheering at their victories, and cringing at their defeats.

The characters:

The main focus of the story is Hal, though his younger sister, her intended, and several others all have chapters in their perspectives. Hal was a character who took responsibility very seriously as the heir apparent to his father's leadership of the village. I quickly grew fond of him and the relationships between him and Emma and him and Swan were precious.

Erik is Hal's blood brother and Emma's swain. He was headstrong, stubborn, overreacted, and could be very difficult to reason with. And I adored him to bits. I normally just want to clobber those sorts of characters, but Ms. Matthews made Erik relatable and showed his loving side in a way that made up for it even when I got frustrated with him. He truly loves Emma and is willing to do anything for her and it was just so sweet! (Fangirl moment over. Promise.)

Swan is a rather mysterious and one doesn't quite know what to make of her. Even if you have read the prequel novella, there are still things that aren't quite clear.
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