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Sarah
Welcome, friend! Relax & rest awhile, if you please. I'm an ordinary girl, a follower of Christ, mama to Gabriel, & wife to Evan. Here in this little space of the online world, I share all manner of bookish things, including full content reviews, writerly snippets, encouragement for everyday life, and a whole collection of names & their meanings.

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Book Review || Fairest Son


Fairest Son
H.S.J. Williams

Trillium Press | August 2018
Faerietales, Fantasy

{GoodReads}
The Fair and Foul courts of the fey folk have long yearned for one to bring them together in peace, but hopes are dashed when the fairest prince and the prophecy concerning him are laid to ruin. Burdened with shame and sorrow, the prince flees to the cold mountains far above the forests and lochs with nothing but animals and goblins for company. 

When a human huntress stumbles upon him in her search for a legendary predator, their fates are intertwined. But she hides deadly secrets, and if he dares to trust her, he may risk the doom of both courts to an ancient evil...

A Retelling of Snow White


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{The Basics}
It's been a long time since I've read anything with that classic old-fashioned faerietale feel.  And this little novel has it!  It is so well written with the kind of prose one comes to love in the old faerietales.  

As the story begins, we meet Prince Idris, the beloved son of the Fair Court's king, prophesied to be the one who unites the two courts of the Fey.  Idris has a heart of gold, and while he's certainly not perfect, and perhaps a bit too trusting, he proves his worth as a future king many times over.

Keeva is a human girl with a shadowy past that seems to haunt her every steps.  She's been set a task, and it's her life that hangs in the balance if she doesn't complete it.  But she comes to question if the risk to herself is worth the life of an innocent that no matter the cruelty dealt that person their heart is pure, and it spirals into a choice she must bravely make.  Hearts are tried & refined, and light and dark is seen in both the Fair & the Foul.

{Spiritual Content}
There's talk of forest spirits, and faerie folk.  The courts of the Fair & the Foul, as well as the story itself, has a bit of an Irish feel to it, and in the terms used---for instance a loch, as in lake.  The Foul Court is made up of darker creatures & things you would heartily wish to never meet in the deep woods.  Whereas the fey of the Fair Court are more like faeries & elves.

{Violence}
The wicked king of the Foul court greets the fair Idris, but in his wickedness sends the young man back to his home kingdom mangled & blinded in an effort to thwart the prophesy.  We learn that Idris' eyes were gouged out---there's only his empty sockets remain, bloodied---he's bloody & bruised, several fingers from both hands were cut off, his tongue removed, and his hearing temporarily damaged.  

A great bear, almost legend, is known for terrible massacres of the forest creatures, and at one point Keeva sets out to hunt him.  They come upon a bloody scene of a whole herd of deer, their corpses lying all over the once-peaceful clearing and blood everywhere.  A doe had fled to a young man's home in an effort to save herself---her side was slashed open revealing bone, torn flesh, and insides.

There's a brief battle between the Fair & the Foul.  A man's head is cut off.  At one point we enter the realm of the dead, a place that seems another dimension beneath the waters of the loch, where a creature that resembles a rotting corpse reigns.

{Language // Alcohol & Drugs}
None.  Perhaps a bit of revelry at a gathering, but otherwise nothing of note.

{Romantic Content}
Idris & Keeva come to care for one another.  But there's no steamy relationship or overtly passionate kisses.  Love blossoms through compassion & kindness.  And that's what makes this story so beautiful!

{Conclusion}
All in all, this was a fabulous tale---and such an original retelling of the classic Snow White & the Seven Dwarves (with the exception these "dwarves" are more goblin-like. . .).  The characters were portrayed so well.  You could see innocence & kindness in Idris, fear & doubt in Keeva, pride in others, and courage in more still.  I most certainly recommend!

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Ages: 16+

Comments

  1. Oh man, I've been wanting to read this one since it first came out. It sounds sooooo up my alley! And your great review is making me want to read it even MORE. I need!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yesss! I think you'll like this one. ;D And it's an easy read! Only about 150 pages or so.

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A shapeless mass, and a book of rules,
And each must make, ere life is flown,
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