©1999 Jennifer Ikeda; (P)2006 Recorded Books
Although originally published in 1970, Enchantress from the Stars has a surprisingly modern feel to it. Aside for the book cover, it would fit right in with today’s books. Enchantress from the Stars is a unique mix of science fiction meets fantasy. Engdahl seamlessly combines a technologically advanced alien race with a world set in a medieval era while creating a story that is timeless and appealing to all ages.
A destructive alien race called the Imperials have settled on the planet of Andrecia to exploit it’s resources and displace it’s less advanced people. This isn’t the first time this race has invaded other planets and their actions have attracted the attention of another alien race even more advanced than they are. To stop the Imperials, a team of agents from this advanced race is sent to Andrecia to reverse the Imperials’ invasion without harm to all sides. Only the team cannot stop the Imperials themselves, they have to work with the natives to stop save Andrecia. The book alternates perspectives giving you an understanding of all sides; Andrecian, Imperial, and the team of Agents.
The main character and primary narrator is Elana, a current student at the Academy learning about Youngling planets. She naively stows away on a spaceship to be apart of her father’s mission to save the planet of Andrecia. Her lack of training is a problem and against the rules but the team has to make the mission work with Elana. Along with her father and her boyfriend, Evrick, the team works together to find a native or natives suited for the job of stopping the Imperials.
Georwyn, Terwyn, and their brothers are young native men walking through the enchanted forest on a mission to slay the dragon (which is actually an Imperial machine that mines the planet’s resources). They seek the reward that the King offers in return for slaying the dragon. While hunting the dragon, they encounter an old man with magical abilities and an enchantress who offers advice in slaying the dragon. Of all the brothers, Georwyn proves himself to be wise beyond his years and well suited for the challenge of slaying the dragon.
Jeral is a medic for the Imperials and after his coworkers kill and imprison natives, he starts to second guess his mission. He’s been told that the natives of Andrecia are not really human and therefore their actions to take over the planet are justified. As the mission goes on, he sees more in more that the people of this planet are human and he no longer wants anything to do with the mission.
Enchantress from the Stars is a well written, original, and heartwarming story. In addition, the audiobook narrator told this story beautifully. It’s even a won a few awards. With that said, I have to say that I didn’t love it but also I didn’t hate it. It isn’t a book that pulls you in and never lets you go but more so an enjoyable read that you can easily put down and pick up again later. Overall, I really to do recommend others give Enchantress from the Stars a try.
Engdahl went on to write a second book featuring Elana called The Far Side of Evil, which takes places on a completely different planet and has a completely different feel.
I enjoyed this book. I feel that it was for young readers. It had a simple story line. A good book to listen to as a family.
Audiobooks are the glue that keep the cracks in my sanity egg together.
I read it in book form a very long time ago and have been searching for it ever since. Finding it on Audible made my day.
I adore the concept of different beings that have undergone the stages of development discussed in the novel and how each stage is just as competent as the other. I enjoyed the different perspectives (although each perspective is an alteration from the main character.)
I'm not sure why other than the narration style matches at some points, but "Daughter of the Forest" by Juliet Mailler comes to mind. Although it's purely fantasy (no science fiction here) it still deals with the inner struggle of a young woman maturing through intense circumstances.
Why must you ask? Seeing as it is a favorite novel I've searched for for quite some, I'm pretty sure I'm biased by saying I loved ALL OF IT.
Alright, I am a sucker for the medieval-ish perspectives.
Yes it was! I wish I had a very long road to drive while listening.
This is a good novel to come back to after a few years. I was fifteen when I first read it, and I thought I understood it to a T. But ten years later, I had a whole new revelation and was ashamed of younger self's thoughts. This is definitely a re-read/listen novel!
On the surface, this novel fits my stereotype of YA fiction: a simple plot that moves along quickly, while being light on world-building and character development. Georyn was just a bit too perfect, always doing and saying exactly the right thing. Further, the auxiliary characters tended to be very predictable. However, all that being said, I really loved the story. It combined the moral pondering of Star Trek with a touch of Star Wars mysticism. This is especially notable considering it was mostly written before either of those two. Some of the dialogue from Elana's father was truly profound and thought-provoking, vaguely reminding me of the weightiness that Captain Picard brought to STTNG. At a high level, I would call it a cautionary tale of prejudging other cultures from within your own moral framework. For this audio version, the narrator actually sounds like a teenage girl, and so does a very good job of bringing Elana to life.
A more interesting and exciting story. And a better narrator voice.
The long dragging conversations that seem to last chapters...
overall this book was extremely boring and hard to comprehend. I would not recommend this book to anyone.
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