Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Review of Andraste by Marisa Mills

Andraste, the daughter of an elfin prince and fairy queen is Fate's Beloved, blessed with an incredible prophecy naming her as the one who can vanquish the Abatu Empire. She has spent her life preparing for the day when she would leave her homeland and fulfill her destiny. That day has come, but there are a few things Andraste doesn't know. Her prophecy is a carefully-constructed lie, and beneath the beauty and civilization of her mother's fairy country, there lie ancient prejudices and secrets. Traitors live within the castle walls, but Andraste can't help but wonder who's worse: the vampire empress conquering the world, or the deceitful fairies she's fighting to save.

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Recommended: Yes. 

                      About Andraste
Available as: NEW Paperback $17.99 from ,  E-book $2.99 from Kindle's Edition 
                                                        Recommended Ages: 15 and Up
Paperback: 360 pgs.
Published June 4th 2011 by Hydra Publications (first published May 27th 2011)  

For This Review: *Book Copy Provided by Publisher For Review Purposes*

The daughter of a fairy queen and elfin prince who's charged with an amazing prophecy, Andraste, is a serious young warrior princess. In the first opening chapters we see Andraste and her upbeat cousin, Radiance, readying to attend a court party. Obviously its a social event to present everyone with the warrior princess. 
Andraste remains dispirited for the evening though being aware of the prophecy that mentions she will be the downfall of the Abutu empire run by evil vampire Empress Sarai and bring peace to the land of Nymphia, Latlan, and other mystical lands in Magick. Towards the middle of the party we see that some type of of serpent shapeshifters have been sent from the Abatu Empire by the command of Empress Sarai who is actually Andraste's aunt but its mentioned she has embraced dark magic guarded by some dieties trusted by the Magick inhabitants in the world of Andraste. Andraste with Radiance know that the time has come to fulfill the prophecy that was created by her mother, Queen Rhiannon of Lumounisia. The serpent shapeshifters are soon fended off with the help off a new friend of the court and the late queen's ambassador. Elvin who is known as the son of a ambitious conquering general who Andraste's mother died almost at the hands while she waged war as he tried to take Lumounisia.

Andraste, comes to know Elvin who for the most part is helping her with politics at court and to also help her fulfill the prophecy to bring down the Abutu Empire. Andraste doesn't believe him at all and we really see her struggle throughout the novel by being in his presence. Nonetheless, she has to fulfill her destiny and journey with Elvin as well as others to gain allies in the war against the Empress Sarai. Even with allies Andraste's fight almost proves impossible and the journey to triumph along the way will bring some rather shocking revelations about the prophecy of Fate's beloved

Having never read a novel from the line of Hydra Publications wasn't sure what to expect in terms of a quality novel. Once got into Andraste found that the book had a beautiful cover and story that is entirely worthy of attention. Marisa Mills has a really diverse voice. Noticed that for Andraste she has a strong sense of duty but she's not always formal since she does have her own personalities. Oh and Radiance, she was an amazingly talkative  duchess and cousin of Andraste. Her upbeat and really talkative personality you can find amusing or irritating at times. While Elvin is such a straitlaced half-siren who can ocassionaly be truly naive. You know the type that is overly caring of others and is too trusting. General Adair of Naeda who's a huge supporter of Elvin is rather interesting and Lady Clara who Elvin holds dear. We get to see a lot of struggles the characters go through but Andraste's perspective  dominates the story most of all with fear but a strong look toward the prophecy about her. Mill's writing is something you can relate to well in fantasy really building a amazing magical world where evil comes in the the form of war that contains an intricate world of creatures and their cultures. Her voice as a writer is multi-faceted meaning that she can take up different character point of views within the story and they all seem different. While her writing as a whole is very addicting there's more that's admirable like the fighting scenes. They come alive in quality building. 

Andraste  in regard to its fantasy take is unique since there are fairies, elves, and ,yes, even unicorns present. There are mentions of the unicorn nation of Firelapsia and titles of unicorns such as Lead Stallion Sunfire and Chestnut. There's more still. Andraste leaves off with Elvin fighting some dark magic connected to a gem known as the Dark Elegem guarded by Oishea, Guardian of Dark Magic. A lot is at work in Andraste that Mills really did a fine job at. 
Hope to see more of Andraste, Elvin, Radiance, General Valiant, Chestnut, Sunfire, and Wildfire in hopefully future novels sonce there seemed to be a possibility for continuation.
There is no doubt abou it, Andraste, is a very different fantasy novel that deserves a chance from any fantasy lover. The dialogue in Andraste will pull you in.
Overall: Amazing read!
Genre: Fantasy

                              About the Author 

Marisa Mills (pronounced muh-ree-suh, and known as Reese to her relatives), is a native Tennessean, presently living in Gulf Shores, Alabama. She has written and published various short stories, poems, and novels. A jack of all trades, master of none, she is a writer, artist, photographer, dancer, kick boxer, baker, and occasional cashier girl. She is easily recognizable from her eccentric personality (and equally eccentric hair), and she can often be found dancing around in public fountains, making lame jokes, talking to complete strangers, and scoping out exciting things to do and try. Her favorite genre is fantasy, which she most often writes in, though she also writes horror, science fiction, historical fiction, and romance. 

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