19 January 2011
ARC Review: Enchanted No More
When the dwarf knocked on her door, Jenni knew nothing would ever be the same again.
Jenni Weaver was able to escape her life as a halfling and the last Mistweaver after the tragic deaths of most of her family fifteen years ago, living a quiet human life in Denver, but she couldn't run from her past or her powers forever. She is drawn back to serving the Lightfolk through guilt, promises and the need to save her last sibling. Soon Jenni discovers that the power she left behind is an integral part of her self, and she is the only one that can balance the powerful magic coming. A magic that both the Lightfolk and the Darkfolk wish to claim for their own.
Jenni has been scarred by her role in her family's deaths, her feeling of betrayal by the Lightfolk, and the separation between her and her brother Rothly. Since her magic and her youthful love cost Jenni everything she loved, she left it all behind to live as human in Denver. Yet while Jenni Weaver wanted to forget all that reminded her of those failures, Jindesfarne Mistweaver was the last of her family who could balance the elemental energies that were being brought to the surface of the earth. Drawn back into the struggle between the Lightfolk and the Darkfolk, Jenni must face her own feelings, reclaim her magic and deal with those she left behind. Jenni struggles with her need to save her brother, her hope for connecting to her last surviving relative, and to forgive those who didn't support her family when they fought and died fifteen years before. One of those people to forgive is herself.
Unfortunately this emotional turmoil lay heavy across the story and I found that most of the secondary characters, except for the brownies, to be shallow, self-serving and lacking any real empathy. Race relations threaded through the story arc also, as Jenni's mixed-blood is pointed out more than once as a flaw and relegate her to a second-class status, even in the face of her needed magics. The obvious discord between the major magical races and those with mixed blood played a large role in the character interactions. Maybe that was the point? However, it made the faults of Jenni, her brother and Jenni's former love Aric even more amplified, which left them hard for me to connect to through much of the book and overshadowed the main plot at times.
Robin D. Owens is the author of the successful Celta and Summoning series, ones that I have feverishly read through the last couple of years. Enchanted No More is the first title of the Mystic Circle series. While I admit I didn't love this one as much as her other books thus far, I will definitely pick up the next one to see where Owens goes with it. I will hope for more of the lush background development and stronger heroines I have seen in her other series.
Title: Enchanted No More
Author: Robin D. Owens
Date: January 2011
Read: NetGalley ebook
ARC Review: Enchanted No More