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From Barnes & NobleThe Barnes & Noble Review
You are really missing out if you haven't yet read Juliet Marillier. This Australian writer is a true bard. Her powerfully emotional stories and knowledge of Celtic traditional culture make her novels an absolute joy to read.
Marillier has shown a trend of using strong yet vulnerable female heroines in her Sevenwaters trilogy. In Daughter of the Forest, the first book in the series, Sorcha loyally toiled to free her brothers from a curse. Now, 18 years later, her family is again visited by misfortune as invaders threaten the Irish lands. Sorcha and her displaced British husband have three children -- Niamh and the twins, Sean and Liadan. Niamh, the eldest, is married off to seal an important alliance. Sean is the heir of Sevenwaters, through his childless uncle Liam. But it is Liadan, the youngest, who inherits her mother's mastery of the healing arts, the gift of sight, and the ability to mindspeak. Liadan is the one who makes contact with the Otherworld and who may just be the key to fulfilling a prophecy that claims a child of both Britain and Ireland will liberate the sacred islands from the British.
After she is abducted by mercenaries, Liadan becomes inextricably entwined in the life of their ruthless leader, the Painted Man. Trying to remain loyal to both the Painted Man as well as to her kin, she risks endangering both and incurring great sacrifice on her part. At once a fairy tale, a love story, and a high adventure set in historical times, this novel is magical, moving, full of intrigue, and action packed. Marillier really has set the perfect atmosphere for this absorbing book. Her characters are so flawed, so human, that the betrayals and loyalties can come from surprising sources, but have reason behind them. Don't miss this series. (Sierra Phillips)