BY ALEXANDRA BRACKEN
Right off, I fell in love with this book! It started with the cover. I mean, just LOOK at all the bright colors mixed with the dark background - and Sydelle and her pure white skin. Even her name - Sydelle! Her personality shines just like her cover .
Right away she finds herself swept away by a young wizard named, Wayland North. Already his name is taking us somewhere. She embarks on a journey with him to stop a war that would destroy her homeland and even though at first she is disgusted with Wayland and the authority he has over her, she slowly discovers his weaknesses and a friendship is born. Right away she made me love the youthful wizard, too. Sydelle makes you wish that just once you could travel by "twisting" - even if the wizard "stinks"! Just read this excerpt from chapter three:
"Well, have you ever thought of bathing?" I asked, turning away. "No one wants to hire a wizard who smells worse than their outhouse. And who knows what creatures are living in that hair?"At first, their travels are mixed with extreme disasters, like landslides and storms, but also peppered with magic- dark and otherwise. Later, each step is purposeful and life-changing for the main characters.
Why do I need to brush my hair, anyway?" He lifted his arm and gave a few experimental whiffs. "And I smell wonderful. All manly and whatnot."
As the story unfolds and the pace quickens, many aspects from the beginning of the story are woven together just like the title. There are kings and queens, sorceresses, castles, boats and battles between wizards. It ends with a huge twist - even though it's not a cliff-hanger it will send you searching to see if there's a sequel! The only question I had about the characters was if they had enough bonding interractons to justify Syd's deep loyalty to North. I would have liked to have dug a little deeper into Syd's feelings. Still, Alexandra Bracken has written the perfect fantasy novel. It's colorful, fun, whitty, clean,exciting,scary, suspensful and romantic. I can't wait to see what she writes next!
I give this ***** 5 stars!