In a stroke of serendipity, I happened upon this trilogy as a consequence of Audible's recent promotional introduction of new series. What a delightfu..Show More »l discovery!
I am still enjoying part three of the first book, and I can anticipate that I will be very sad when I finish the last part of the final book (but I can also anticipate that this is a series that will warrant another listen, or two). I have been thoroughly engaged from the start, and unlike so many other audiobooks I have tried, I can find NOTHING to criticize.
I think any revered author would enjoy the opportunity to explore the imagination and linguistic prowess of Juliet Marillier, and any listener would be entranced by the voice, emotional emphasis, and cadence of Terry Donnelly!
I have not read or listened to any of this author’s other works yet, but from this story, I feel I know something about her that I love. The characters in this book are like phrases from a piece of music with every note in its perfect place. They, and the scenes in which they exist are beautiful and memorable.
The narrator has added a significant contribution to the experience for me, which so often is not the case. I have so many times been able to recognize an author’s talent, but been prevented from enjoying it because the narrator distracts from it to some degree. Not so here. As I eventually look to explore more stories from Juliet Marillier, they will be even more compelling if Terry Donnelly is again chosen to read them!
I could go on to say more, but I will simply end by offering my recommendation that if you decide to try this book, you will likely rejoice the credit and time you spent to do so!
About 15 years have passed since the end of Daughter of the Forest Sorcha and Red have 3 children twins Sean & Liadan, and Niamh, Sean is being groome..Show More »d to take over Sevenwaters, Liadan is a healer much like her mother and Niamh seems to be the spoiled pretty girl who will marry to further the families allies, but she has other ideas when a druid named Ciaran comes to Sevenwaters he and Niamh start a secret affair, but this will not go well and if you paid attention to ending of Daughter of the Forest you will know why this relationship cannot go on. When the family finds out about this she is sent off to marry a chieftain who may not be as good a man as the family thinks he is!
Liadan is kidnapped by the mysterious and dangerous Painted Man to heal one of his brethren as she spends more time with this band of men she sees a different side of this man than she previously thought, since he won’t tell her his name she decides to call him Bran and she falls in love with him they have one night of passion and then he finds out who her father is and sends her home. As you can guess the night of passion has resulted in a child. So now you have the gist of what this installment is about.
There were times I really like Liadan I liked her strength at becoming a single mother when that kind of thing was not done however I questioned her thinking when she took her baby into enemy territory to rescue Bran and his man Gull, I mean really who would do that when you have a whole house full of family and servants, so why in the world would you strap your baby on your back for a dangerous rescue mission.
There are parts of this book that are very sad for lovers of the first Sevenwaters book Daughter of the Forest , including the reveals comes of just who Bran actually is and why he has such a grudge against Liadan’s father Hugh of Harrowfield, I thought this one did a great job of bringing us up to date on the characters from the first book but also moving on from them to the next generation.
Rosalyn Landor narrated this one and if you follow my reviews you know she is a favorite of mine and this was no exception. As always, she does a great job with nice accents and variations between characters.
This was a re-read I read this book years ago and re-read on audio and maybe didn’t like Liadan as much as I remembered.
Heather O'Neill’s narration was great, Fianne unlike the rest of her family in Sevenwaters was born in a different part of the county and had a strong..Show More »er Irish accent more I don’t know maybe lowborn but I thought Heather’s portrayal of her was very well done. I truly enjoyed all her accents. I would definitely listen to more by this narrator.
Fianne daughter of Niamh and Ciaran comes to Sevenwaters after her mother’s death and is welcomed into the family fold, however things aren’t as they seem because the Sevenwaters clan has no idea she has been tutored not only in the ways of a druid by her father but in the dark arts by her grandmother the evil sorceress who was the one who cast the spell on the sons of Sevenwaters. In a long ago prophecy it states that it will take a child that was neither of Britain nor or Erin but at the same time both, who is marked by the raven to take the sacred island back. Everyone assumes this is Johnny son of Liadan & Bran and the evil sorceress has sent Fianne there to kill him when the moment is right so the prophecy is not fulfilled.
I enjoyed Fianne’s story very much she is as all other Sevenwaters women very strong and goes through a lot but she is being controlled by the sorceress but also still has the good in her that comes from her father’s teachings. She has a very hard road I think the toughest since Sorcha, because she so wants to be good even when the sorceress forces her to do terrible things that injures one of the other daughters of Sevenwaters.
I liked this book because it is filled with the Sevenwaters family no one is really off their own, Fianne is surrounded by people who want her to be good and want her in their lives, her two biggest allies are Finbar the uncle who still wears a swans wing thanks to her grandmother and Darragh her childhood friend. This is also our first look at island of Inis Eala where Bran’s men under the tutelage of his son Johnny are running a sort of school for warriors and we see the families of the men from Son of Shadows including Gull’s wife Biddy who was a favorite character of mine. We also have the creepy Eamonn again and contrary to outward appearances he has not forgiven what he feels are the wrongs done to him by Bran & Liadan.
I would say this is my second favorite of the series after Daughter of the Forest. I thoroughly enjoyed Fianne journey and the outcome, even though fans of the other books may need hankies towards the end, I know I did.
Rosalyn Landor did a great job on the narration as always, Mac Dara’s voice had just the right amount of contempt for humans and venom when he was cr..Show More »ossed. She gave Clodagh a dignity and fragility at times that was a nice blend. I always enjoy all her different voices male and female.
When we venture back to Sevenwaters the household is preparing for the wedding of Dierdre to a nobleman, the house is full of people among them Johnny and some of his men including Aiden and Cathal, Aiden has eyes for Dierdre’s twin Clodagh and his rude foster-brother Cathal seems to have a lot to say about this. As was decided by Lord Sean, Johnny son of Liadan & Bran would be the heir to Sevenwaters since he and wife Aisling have only had daughters but an unexpected late in life pregnancy produces a son they name Finbar. The pregnancy has been worrisome to the whole household because of Aisling’s age but when everything goes well with the birth the whole household celebrates and sighs with relief, until the day Cathal comes to say goodbye to Clodagh in the nursery and in that second her brother Finbar is gone and in his place a changeling made of sticks that only she can see is a real child from the otherworld. This begins Clodagh’s journey into the otherworld to rescue her brother with Cathal’s help.
This one had much more otherworldly/magical beings and worlds than the last couple books have had which I enjoyed, most of the book is spent in the otherworld with forest beings and the evil King of The Oaks Mac Dara who wants something but it isn’t Finbar or Clodagh . Cathal was an interesting character because in the beginning he is so rude to everyone especially Clodagh but as the story goes on we see why he was like he was and his reasoning’s behind it all.
Clodagh’s journey is interesting because unlike all the other daughters of Sevenwaters who did battle with otherworldly foes this is this first one that did their fighting in the otherworld, she has a long harrowing journey and I was glad that years and years hadn’t passed in the real world while she searched for her brother!
I have mixed feelings about this author and series and especially this installment. On the one hand, Juliet Marillier has created a world and characte..Show More »rs that we've come to love. While there are certain predictible formulaic aspects to the stories, she does not write cookie cutter stories. She often takes chances with her plots and characters. They aren't always the typical hero/heroine.
She also takes her time in her writing. Really takes her time. Which is not always good. This book could have been trimmed at least 20% and lost nothing. She has a tendancy to go on and on and repeat things until I start to lose patience with her. This is a long book, which I normally love and I don't feel like I'm a person who needs non-stop action, but for half the book almost nothing happens. We're mostly waiting for the male character to get well. At one point, she spends at least 15 minutes telling the story of Son of the Shadows over again. Perhaps it's because I've been listening to this series in succession, but it annoyed me for her to spend so much time repeating a story we already know.
The story itself has few surprises. It's pretty easy to guess where the story is going. This is also a weakness of this author that her plots are often pretty transparant.
The narration of this didn't help. Felix, the main male character sounds too whiney. Everything is too dramatic and drawn out, which does not help this story which is already too drawn out. I found myself wondering if I would have liked the story better if it was read differently.
So with all those negatives, would I recommend the book. Yes, if you like this series. It's still a part of the 7 Waters story, which I quite like. When I think of this story as a whole, it's a decent installment, just not 17 hours worth of story. Make sure you have something else to do while listening to this one.
It brings me back to the overall love/hate problems I have with this author. I love her characters and worlds, but I wish she had an editor that forced her to tighten up the repetitiveness and drawn out drama in her writing.
We are back at Sevenwaters, Finbar is now a boy of 7 or 8 and seems to have a few lasting effects of his time in the otherworld with Mac Dara , also M..Show More »aeve, daughter of Lord Sean who was badly burned as a child in Fianne’s story comes back to Sevenwaters after 10 years spent in the house of Liadan & Bran. It is tough on her because she has very limited use of her hands and her face is scarred and at Harrowfield she wasn’t an oddity because she has always been there but back at Sevenwaters people stare and talk behind her back. Plus she is having a hard time reconnecting with her mother who just wants to pretend the last 10 years didn’t exist or to see the strong woman her daughter has become. Maeve has a way with animals, it is her gift.
Maeve & Finbar are both feeling a bit constrained in the house Finbar is under constant guard and doesn’t seem to be able to do anything a normal child of his age can do and Maeve used to having freedom to be outside in stables or just outside period is having a very hard time sitting in the ladies sewing room with her mother and the other women of the house since she can’t sew since her hands are burnt up.
I enjoyed the budding friendship between Finbar & Maeve neither has ever had their siblings around very much so it was neat to see them become so close.
There is a bit of formula to this one but since Marillier is such a great writer I chose to overlook that. There is finally a ending to the Mac Dara story but not in the way you may have thought it would end but I wish there would have been more of Cathal & Clodagh and even though we have been working up to this conclusion for a few books I still felt it was a little rushed and wished we had seen Ciaran’s entire journey and Cathal’s journey back. There is a death at the beginning of this book that is sad for fans of Daughter of the Forest but it makes a true ending of that story.
As always Rosalyn Landor’s narration was well done, I like that she made Maeve sound a bit different than everyone else at Sevenwaters after all she has been living in Britain at Harrowfield so she would have a different accent .
Even though this isn’t my favorite Sevenwaters book it was still worth 4 stars.