Friday, February 7, 2014

The Enchantress of Lynniah by A.L. Bawden: Spotlight, Excerpt and Review


Enchantress of L

The Enchantress of Lynniah

Have you ever come across a vain, impetuous little creature called a Mandie, and had to quickly dodge one of her poisonous darts? Or, have you ever imagined having to sing to a fruit to get it to peel open? Perhaps you've bumped into freakishly large, blue men, called Dreads? Well, with all of that, along with evil Nymphs and blood thirsty Banelorgs - these are things you've only likely experienced if you've had a nice long visit to Lynniah.

Corrah's life suddenly and drastically changes with the unexpected and inexplicable death of her loving mother, Lillian. She and her two sisters, Gaela and Stormy, are suddenly thrust into the unknown and sent to live with their mysterious Aunt Rainee, who lives in the seemingly bewitched village, called Lynniah. Living in a house that their mother's family had occupied for hundreds of years, they find clues that begin to unlock the startling reality that they are all part of an important magical heritage. A heritage that has been kept secret to save them from a dark and powerful enemy. Corrah has to find a way to battle and balance the onslaughts of loss, young love, and learn to uncover the personal power she has hidden inside her to overcome overwhelming adversity.

Praise for The Enchantress of Lynniah

"I loved this book! It had a bit of everything...fantasy, adventure, romance, intrigue, and really unique characters! I was immediately drawn in and it held my attention throughout the story. It's the type of book I could read over and over again. I highly recommend it if your looking for a fun read." ~Shelly on Goodreads

"This book was awesome! It stayed with me for days, I kept thinking about all the characters. I can't wait for the sequel!" ~Emma on Goodreads

The moonlight leaked sparingly through the rigid thickness of trees in front of Lillian, giving barely enough illumination and just enough time to jump over the large roots, rocks and other unrecognizable obstacles, as she ran with all her might to elude the enemies behind her.  She knew from the sharp snaps and crackling of leaves and twigs that they were gaining up on her fast.  Dreads are large, but not quick on their feet, and to her advantage none of them were on horseback.  The fortress couldn’t be too far ahead, she thought.  And she knew that if she reached it she might find cover enough to cast some effective spells.  
The deep grunting of Dreads closed in behind her.  She held her hand up against the sky with a beckoning motion, causing large branches to crack violently; hoping to create a more solid barrier between her and her savage foes.  Glancing after, she could see that it had worked, if only for a moment.  She tried to gain speed, but her legs were becoming tight and sore from the constant, grueling chase.  Arrows continued whizzing violently through the sky all around her, as she reached the top of the small hill ahead – that’s where she could finally see it. Foreboding as it was, with its black, slick, and sinister design; it still looked very extraordinary in the moonlight.  She had reached the fortress at last.  
It had taken years to discover how to disarm the protective enchantments around it, and now she was finally here.  Four members of the Great Council, her companions, had been killed tonight on this deadly quest and she simply couldn’t bear to fail them all now.  As she scanned the open clearing around the building, she noticed that more Dreads were standing guard and preparing for the oncoming chase that was imminently obvious by the arrows, yells, and loud trampling coming their way.  Lillian continued to rain debris in their path, frantically casting spells behind her as she ran.
Taking cover behind a large tree, she began enchanting the rocks to fly in the direction of her pursuers.  Loud grunts and angry howls echoed through the forest as the rocks made contact.  A few moments of near silence ensued, giving Lillian the confidence she needed to break away from the tree and descend the slope in front of the fortress.  She speedily moved down the slope, hiding between trees and large rocks on the way to conceal her.  
It seemed as if her pursuers had finally fallen behind!  She triumphantly moved nearer to the entrance, when all of the sudden something hot and forceful struck her violently in the back.  The heat surged through her body rapidly, causing instant paralysis.  As she fell backward onto the hard earth, and just before her eyes closed, a long black haired figure hovered over her, piercing her with dark and soulless eyes.


4 Stars

First off let me say that I am certainly not in the target demographic for this book.  I am a grandma and this book is written primarily for younger readers.  I was drawn to read this book because I love “Hobbit type” fantasies with great characters and lots of adventure.  This book did not disappoint me.  I enjoyed it, and found I actually read it quite a bit slower than is the norm for me because I was captured by the beauty and flow of the words.

There were several times, however; when I became exceedingly irritated with Corrah.  She is a stubborn young woman who has suffered a horrendous loss; she loves her sisters and is quite protective of them. Being the eldest, she feels it is her responsibility to keep her family safe.  That is admirable, but the way in which she tricks and outright lies to Cybele, a woman who has been exceptionally kind to her, really got my goat.  I think this is a generational thing. I am sure I pulled a few shenanigans in my youth, as well, but though I tried to keep an open mind it did irk me.  That she was never chastised for her behavior made it even more annoying.

The story teams with a unique cast of characters.  I particularly liked Lurdes, the Dread in charge of Stormy, and the theme that sometimes second chances do come along, if we have the courage to accept the opportunity to move forward.  I found this book to be beautifully lyrical, magically enthralling, and creatively composed. I am looking forward to the continuing adventures of these young Enchantresses.

This book was provided to me in exchange for my honest review.

Reviewed by Laurie-J  

Author A.L. Bawden

A.L. Bawden was born and raised in Salt Lake City, Utah, into a large family of artists. Her father is a renowned sculptor -(Dee Jay Bawden), and her mother was an ingenious crafter, interior decorator, and seamstress. She has siblings that are sculptors, photographers, painters, cake decorators, tattoo artists, film makers, and crafters. She and a couple of her sisters have also had a successful mural painting business in Utah, called Artistic Murals. Her other hobbies include, reading, sewing & designing costumes, making jewelry, crafting, wake-boarding, snow-boarding, camping, fishing, boating, hiking, and running. She is a lover of fantasy fiction books and has enjoyed writing ever since she was a kid. She is the mother of three and is currently managing a couple of small online businesses.


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