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Arrow of the Mist
Christina Mercer
Genre: YA Fantasy
Terror strikes the Celtic inspired kingdom of Nemetona when barbed roots breach the veil of a forbidden land and poison woodsmen, including 15-year-old Lia’s beloved father. Lia and three others embark on a quest to the forbidden land of Brume to gather ingredients for the cure. But after her elder kinsman is attacked and poisoned, she and her cousin, Wynn, are forced to finish the quest on their own.

Lia relies on her powerful herbal wisdom and the memorized pages of her late grandmother’s Grimoire for guidance through a land of soul-hungry shades, trickster creatures, and uncovered truths about the origin of Brume and her family’s unexpected ties to it. The deeper they trek into the land, the stronger Lia’s untapped gift as a tree mage unfolds. When she discovers the enchanted root’s maker, it forces her to question everything about who she is and what is her destiny. Ultimately she must make a terrible choice: keep fighting to save her father and the people of the lands or join with the power behind the deadly roots to help nature start anew.

About the Author

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Christina Mercer writes fiction in addition to mothering two young adults, a pack of large dogs, and about 100,000 honeybees. Her varied interests prompted her to study creative writing, earn her official degree in Accounting, become a CPA, acquire a certificate in Herbal Studies, and keep honeybees. She took Writer’s Best in Show at the 2012 SCBWI CA North/Central Regional Conference and was a semi-finalist in the 2010 Amazon Breakout Novel Award Contest. You can find her at www.christinamercer.comor working as the Reviews Director at www.indie-visible.com

Arrow of the Mist was one roller-coaster of a fantasy adventure. 

There was no world-building in the beginning; no sense of what life was. There were snippets and peek-a-boos of what Lia's little world like in that village but no concrete view of it.  After a few paragraphs introducing Lia and Koun (which I imagined as a Siberian Husky), her father was poisoned by the barbed roots of Brume and the next thing I know we're off on an adventure.

While the beginning was a bit rushed and we get little sense of what village life, the journey through Brume to get the cure to the poison (and discover Lia's heritage along the way) was epic and truly fantastic. The riddles that were strewn all over the narrative enhanced the story, Lia's understanding of her quest and her part in it provided a direction for the story to traverse. What I especially loved most was the body of knowledge of herblore. While I've never seen most of the herbs and trees mentioned in the book, I was truly intrigued by how Mercer insisted on keeping to the old ways of naming them which was part of the charm. 

Mercer created a unique story - a beautifully written fantasy. As I said, a roller-coaster adventure that had me eagerly turning the pages for more.

When the main character is going to go on an adventure chances are that her companion would be the MC's love interest. It was not the case in this book and I love it for that. In fact, the love story in this book was pushed to the side and focused more on the adventure and the magic that always drew me to fantasy books. I admit that because of the lack of development between Lia and Kelven, I simply did not believe of the supposed love that was between them. It was just not believable. Smitten probably - a crush - but not love.
Ayanami Faerudo

1 comment:

  1. Oh wow I would have expected the love interest to be the partner, too! Refreshing when authors take a different route! :) Great review, Ayanami! :)


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