This is my favorite of Mercedes Lackey's re-told fairy tales, and I was pleased to find it available in audio format. Maya Witherspoon is a terrific c..Show More »haracter and you immediately become engrossed in her story as a young Anglo-Indian woman who has successfully conquered the barriers of the male-dominated English medical/surgical profession in the late 1800s. The people she meets in her London charity hospital work and her private medical practice are vividly portrayed, and many become her friends and supporters.
Michelle Ford does a quite good job of differentiating the characters' voices and accents, both male and female.
Highly recommended, and I know I'll listen to this again and again.
This is a perfectly pleasant fantasy book for bright twelve-year-olds. I would happily read it to a niece or a nephew, but as an adult read it is a g..Show More »ood deal short of satisfying. The narration is competent but a trifle cloying, perhaps even for twelve-year-old ears. I have enjoyed several of Lackey's books, but I probably should have investigated a little more deeply before I snapped this one up when I saw it on sale.
For those looking for whimsy and a Victorian London setting in a fantasy tale, I would strongly recommend "Neverwhere" by Neil Gaiman, a book which will delight young people and adults alike.
When Earth Master Richard Whitestone's wife dies in childbirth, he discards their newborn daughter Suzanne in a fit of rage. Suzanne is raised as a s..Show More »ervant of the household, while her father wastes away in his chambers. After many years, Whitestone develops a new passion - necromancy. When he sees his daughter wandering his lands, he realizes she is the perfect vessel in which to trap his dead wife's spirit. Suzanne must flee her father, and hide in the guise of a servant in another household. But her skill in Earth magic is difficult to hide...
This is a non-canonical retelling of the fairy tale Donkeyskin, and is part of Lakey's Elemental Master series. Although it certainly has charm and originality, it is not my favorite of the Donkeyskin retellings, nor of the Elemental Master series. I felt the premise of the book - a necromantic father, Elemental Masters fighting in WWI, with a touch of romance - had promise. Unfortunately, it just wasn't delivered as well as it could have been. The romance seemed forced, and the war sections uninteresting. Not that it was a terrible book, but it could have been so much better. Lackey is better than this.
But, if you're looking for a fluffy-quick read, or an original fairy tale retelling, this book will certainly deliver that. The narration by Kate Reading was quite good. She did the voices well, and had good timing.
I couldn't put the book down, the story had me captivated throughout. From start to finish the book is a sweetly woven work that all Lackey fans shoul..Show More »d enjoy. The narrator did a fine job as well.
I enjoy Lackey's books, the elemental masters series especially, but I don't think Steadfast lived up to the rest of the series. It had some great mom..Show More »ents, but overall, I felt there were too many loose ends.
The heroine was a little flat. She has an interesting back story, but she doesn't seem to grow very much, and where their was the potential for her to--regain herself?--it wraps up too quickly to feel like anything momentous has occurred.
An old favorite character is briefly trotted out and just as briefly disappears with no explanation of what happened, and no real reason for his having been included.
I was left feeling like there was a lot left unsaid and I'd love to see the author's notes on this story.
On the other hand, it's the Elemental Masters series! I still enjoyed listening, and I'll probably listen to it again. It gave a little more information about the rules of elemental magic in the Lackey-verse. It was a very different class/culture of people than she has written about before. While there are are shades of Reserved for the Cat, I think the story is different enough to stand by itself.
Overall, I'd say that if you are a fan of the series, it's a must have just as part of the collection. If you are just starting, don't start with this book.