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Hawthorne (Druid Spirit Chronicles) Paperback – October 29, 2015
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"Rebound" by Kwame Alexander
Don't miss best-selling author Kwame Alexander's "Rebound," a new companion novel to his Newbery Award-winner, "The Crossover," illustrated with striking graphic novel panels. Learn more
From the Back Cover
Gods once ruled Ireland. The ancient Celts fought them into submission, using Druid magic and the might of heroes. The Druids enchanted a tree to imprison the most dangerous of the gods. Only one thing has kept humanity safe:
Two thousand years have passed and the tree is dying. The Morrigan,
goddess of death and battle, soon will be free to unleash her bloody
revenge on human kind. The knowledge of the Druids has faded and only
two remain who can use the ancient magic.
Rhiannon O'Neil, Druid apprentice, lives in fear of the fae who have killed all but her and her uncle. Now, he has disappeared. Terrified that he is dead, she leaves home for Ireland to find him. Rhiannon soon discovers that the root of her problems lies in an underground faerie world.
Rhiannon enlists her fiancé, Logan, to help her, but he carriesa secret burden with him. All evidence points to Logan's guilt in the murder of his father. He chose to run, hoping to find a way to control his shapeshifter power and clear his name.
A Celtic prince, Garth, lives in the faerie world with a clan of Iron Age Irish. He is charged with finding the mysterious Well of Wisdom and returning with the Water of Life to restore the tree. The Morrigan sends her best assassin, the Cailleach, to kill him.
Can a Druid's apprentice, a renegade skinwalker and a Celtic prince find the strength to defeat the Morrigan? What secrets will a hidden faerie world reveal? What sacrifices must be made? Who will die?
About the Author
Kevin grew up in Michigan and Florida, but you could equally say he grew up in Tolkien’s Middle Earth and C.S. Lewis’s Narnia. From the first time he walked through the wardrobe into Narnia, he knew he loved fantasy fiction. It allowed him to dream of bright places and also of the dark and mysterious. After finishing his English degree, he moved to Colorado and worked for Barnes and Noble. He managed four Barnes and Noble stores over fifteen years and during that time he worked on his novel, Hawthorne, hoping to one day have his own work on the shelves. He lives with his family in Denver and is now dedicated to working full time on writing.
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Top customer reviews
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Kevin Fury has done a masterful job of developing a cast of memorable characters and used them to enact a complex and wonderful story. In addition, his description of the Druids, the Celts, ogam symbols, and the use of magic are very authentic. I do not like much of the fantasy literature due to the authors' use of unrealistic characters and descriptions. It was refreshing to find that Kevin Fury tried to be as authentic as possible.
This book was a good read and one that I barely could put down. I look forward to Book Two!
Mr. Fury has woven an epic adventure that includes at least three different main story arcs that splinter along the path before rejoining the arc again. His fantasy world is amazingly detailed and his characters are well rounded with distinct personalities. Rhiannon is a strong female heroine who is plagued with insecurities, but she finds her strength when she has time to center herself. This isn’t always easy for her to do because a lot of the action comes fast and furious where snap decisions must be made. She is often pitted against egos that are much greater than her own as well. Luckily, proving her integrity, she is able to make a few interesting fae friends who are able to assist her on her quest.
The story-line takes several surprising twists where tough decisions must be made. Mr. Fury did an excellent job weaving all of his threads together for a dramatic conclusion. The battle scenes throughout are all graphic and captivating. While this story is far from over the most important story arc was brought to a satisfying close. There are still hardships to confront, responsibilities to address, and relationships which could prove troublesome.
From what I could learn about the author, Kevin Fury, Hawthorne seems to be his debut novel. He takes an elementary approach to Celtic Mythos, if you are new to Druid mysticism, The Sidhe, or The Fae, this is a good book to become familiar with their basic truths and beliefs.
Now, I am going to get nit-picky. I am giving Hawthorne a four star rating because the author did a great job keeping the big picture in order, which is hard to do with such an epic story. However, I found two small inconsistencies that did throw me out of the story momentarily. The first was when Fao, the wolf, followed Rhiannon out of the cave (chapter 11) who was following Tinurion. He then reached down and stroked Fao’s head. A page later Fao woke up, stretched, and walked over to sit next to the Tinurion. The second was when Rhiannon shed her cloak in the raging water because of its weight (chapter 33) and in the next chapter she is pushing up the sleeves of her robe. These were small and had no real bearing on the story whatsoever. I wanted to warn Mr. Fury to keep an eye on the small details as well. A good line editor should have caught these. Despite these issues I would recommend this epic fantasy that mixes Celtic mythos with Native American myths and look forward to the next book.
Format/Typo Issues: I came across a few proofing issues that could use some attention. Mostly missing, extra, or wrong words, but they didn’t throw me out of the story. These could have been addressed before publication, but I have to review the file I was given.
FYI: **Originally written for "BigAl’s Books and Pals" book blog. May have received a free review copy.** June 8, 2016
An important secondary character was Garth. I loved Garth! You can really see the love he has for his family and clan. It drives everything he does as he tries to protect them from The Morrigan. Logan, Rhiannon's fiance, also plays a large role in the book. What I found interesting is he is not what meets the eye. He is battling his own past and has his own path to follow.
Overall, a great debut novel! It's fast paced and never bogs down. There are several plot lines going, all well developed. Many times I wondered how a character was going to get out of a bind. If you like Kevin Hearn or Jim Butcher's books, you'll enjoy this. It's a fun read and I can't wait to see more from this author!