Friday, May 23, 2014

Friday Book Review: WayFarer by Janalyn Voigt

E-book $5.99
Print $15.99
ISBN: 978-1611162929
Jan 2014 by Pelican/Harborlight Books
Buy on Amazon
About the book:
Trouble stirs between nations and rebellion threatens Faeraven.

When Kai returns with the supposed DawnKing, Lof Shraen Elcon cannot trust that the Elder youth truly is the prophesied deliverer. Driven to prove himself, Elcon banishes the boy and embarks on a peace-keeping campaign into the Elder lands, where he falls in love with an Elder princess betrothed to another.

Sometimes the deliverance of a nation comes only through the humility of one.

Declaring his love would shame the nations, but Elcon is torn. As war approaches, Elcon’s choices lead him on a journey of discovery that will either settle the lands or leave them mired in conflict. Can his kingdom ever be united, or will the consequences of his decisions forever tear asunder the fabric of Faeraven?

See the post with Janalyn on her fantasy creatures here.

My Review:

I loved the first book of the series, and I expected this one to be a sequel. It sort of is…but not really. Both books are stand alone, though related. The quest of the The DawnSinger has been fulfilled—only the person who should be the most grateful, Elcon, the new King, can’t accept this DawnKing who seems nothing like a savior should be. Elcon banishes the youthful, obviously part Elder DawnKing and proceeds to make a disaster of his life and his kingdom.

I admit that I had mixed feelings about this book, and even as I eagerly anticipate the third installment in the Tales of Faerhaven, I come back to think about this story. I read it weeks ago, but struggled with what to share about it. The story was like watching your best friend do everything possible to sabotage any good thing that could happen to himself or anyone else around him. I experienced a huge range of emotions during this journey, which is what any good author wants to draw from her readers.

Elcon managed to drive a deeper wedge between his kingdom and that of the Elders, a people of different race by falling in love with the princess and marrying her, after forsaking the woman he was expected to marry. This wouldn’t normally be a bad thing, except that he managed to make a mess of it. Voigt doesn’t mind making her readers fall for characters and then pulling the rug out from under us.

WayFarer is filled with both familiar and strange but compelling characters and creatures, a story that readers of epic fantasy will find satisfying, yet wanting more. I miss Kai and Shae, yet I have a feeling they’re still there. A very good read.
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