Violet Wings

( 9 )

Overview

For Zaria Tourmaline, the three years without her mother and brother have been lonely ones, living with a cold and distant guardian while she completes her education. Just as she is ready to join the world of adult fairies and genies, she finds a spellbook written entirely in her mother’s hand. But this treasured object is not safe from a new enemy, a fairy with more power than Zaria ever dreamed existed. Only among the humans–who must never know fairies and genies exist–can Zaria hide the spellbook; but hidden ...

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Overview

For Zaria Tourmaline, the three years without her mother and brother have been lonely ones, living with a cold and distant guardian while she completes her education. Just as she is ready to join the world of adult fairies and genies, she finds a spellbook written entirely in her mother’s hand. But this treasured object is not safe from a new enemy, a fairy with more power than Zaria ever dreamed existed. Only among the humans–who must never know fairies and genies exist–can Zaria hide the spellbook; but hidden magic, it turns out, can expose a fairy in ways she never thought possible.

Kirkus Reviews
Review Date: July 15, 2009
Fairies, genies, pixies and trolls: material for preschoolers’ books? Not so in Hanley’s new effort following on her fantasy trilogy that began in The Seer and the Sword (2000). Zaria, a 12-year-old fairy from Tirfeyne, a parallel world unseen by humans, has received her wand and the watch that reveals her inborn levels of magic and power. She’s exceedingly powerful, but she’s also “Earth-struck,” far too interested in what happens on Earth, perhaps because her family disappeared during a visit there. Zaria discovers that her mentor Lily Morganite is evil, but with the help of friends and growing knowledge and control of her own powers, she’s able to battle for control of the governing council against the stronger woman in a breathless climax that clearly sets up a follow-on novel. Each chapter begins with an excerpt from a history of Tirfeyne, creating a believable depth and detail in the fairy world. Although Zaria’s character is well developed, others are superficially drawn. The well-realized world and believable main character make this a worthwhile read. (Fantasy. 10-14)

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Dyed-in-the-wings fairy fans will best appreciate Hanley's (The Seer and the Sword) novel vision of Feyland, a world of fairies, genies, leprechauns and gnomes. After her parents and brother take a portal to Earth and are captured by humans, Zaria Tourmaline, a fairy, is orphaned and left in the care of her teacher. Three years later, as Zaria is coming into her power, she can't shake her fascination with the land of humans. Zaria and her best friend Leona (who both learn they are exceptionally powerful fairies) use an unsecured portal to visit and explore Earth, but are spotted and recorded by humans, which leads to being disciplined by Feyland's High Council. Still, the girls can't resist the lure of Earth and, eventually, uncover a plot that threatens Feyland. Although magic in Feyland is regulated, rationed and taxed, spells and deceptions fly fast and furious (Hanley provides background about Zaria's world in chapter introductions). While the fact that the characters' surnames are all gems and minerals feels, ahem, precious, tween readers will appreciate the strong friendships between Zaria and her allies. Ages 10–14. (Aug.)
School Library Journal
Gr 4–6—When Zaria Tourmaline and her fairy classmates receive their wands at age 12, she is shocked to discover that she and her friend Leona have extraordinarily high levels of magical ability and power reserves, talents that have become almost unheard of in Feyland. For Zaria the news is tinged with bitterness, for she cannot share it with her parents, who disappeared three years earlier on a mission to Earth. Despite (or perhaps because of) this, she is drawn to the human world, and creates a stir when she is spotted by a pair of children. Now Zaria must face the consequences of her carelessness while fending off the attacks of her sinister mentor, Lily Morganite, who seems determined to get her hands on Zaria's powers. Themes of classism and responsible use of power are touched on but get lost in the uneven plotting. The fairy world and Zaria's struggles with Lily make for a solid fantasy adventure, but the story grinds to a halt when it moves to Earth, where the action feels perfunctory and extraneous.—Christi Esterle, Parker Library, CO
Kirkus Reviews
Fairies, genies, pixies and trolls: material for preschoolers' books? Not so in Hanley's new effort following on her fantasy trilogy that began in The Seer and the Sword (2000). Zaria, a 12-year-old fairy from Tirfeyne, a parallel world unseen by humans, has received her wand and the watch that reveals her inborn levels of magic and power. She's exceedingly powerful, but she's also "Earth-struck," far too interested in what happens on Earth, perhaps because her family disappeared during a visit there. Zaria discovers that her mentor Lily Morganite is evil, but with the help of friends and growing knowledge and control of her own powers, she's able to battle for control of the governing council against the stronger woman in a breathless climax that clearly sets up a follow-on novel. Each chapter begins with an excerpt from a history of Tirfeyne, creating a believable depth and detail in the fairy world. Although Zaria's character is well developed, others are superficially drawn. The well-realized world and believable main character make this a worthwhile read. (Fantasy. 10-14)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781606840115
  • Publisher: EgmontUSA
  • Publication date: 8/25/2009
  • Pages: 288
  • Product dimensions: 5.80 (w) x 8.62 (h) x 1.24 (d)

Meet the Author

Victoria Hanley has done a lot of traveling in search of fairy hotspots. She's made long journeys by car, plane, bus, train, and bicycle, not to mention plenty of hiking. Along the way, she has lived in California, Massachusetts, Wisconsin, New Mexico, Oregon, and Colorado, and her novels have been published in ten languages. Her fantasy headquarters are now located in Loveland, Colorado, at the foot of the Rocky Mountains, a place where fairies and genies, along with pixies, trolls, gremlins, and assorted humans, are always welcome to gather. You can visit the author at www.victoriahanley.com.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 9 )
Rating Distribution

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Sort by: Showing all of 9 Customer Reviews
  • Posted September 10, 2009

    Better than your average fairy

    Full disclosure: I love Hanley's work. What a pleasure to find a book that can fill both my son's and daughter's competing demands for fairies, danger, fantasy, adventure, tween angst, funny stuff, scary stuff that's not TOO scary, the ups and downs of friendship, AND chocolate. Wow.

    I also gave this book as a gift to my 10-years-old niece, who quite firmly has declared herself "a regular girl, not a girlie-girl", and she LOVES it. Went through half of it in a day, and is already asking her mom when "the next one" will be out.

    Soon, I hope!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted August 19, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Reviewed by Andrea for TeensReadToo.com

    In the Fey world, turning twelve is a big deal. This is when you find out what level of magic you have and what color amount of radia you have. This determines how powerful you are and how much magic you have to use.

    When Zaria turns twelve, she learns that she is more important than she thought she was. And after she takes a trip to Earth, she realizes how much she loves it, even though her family was supposedly killed by a human after going through a portal.

    She soon learns that people in Feyland want her power. Even Lily, who is her mentor and the Forcier who collects the radia tax every year. When Zaria realizes that Lily isn't as good as she seems, Lily puts spells on her and her friends. Zaria has to learn to use her power to help quickly!

    This was a cute fairy story. I think the younger YA audience will enjoy it, and it's a different take on the Fey world. Here, fairies are human-sized, have levels of magic (but they only have a certain amount they can use), and they have wands.

    I enjoyed reading about Zaria. She was a cute character who had some pretty good morals. But she had a backbone, too. Her friends were much the same way.

    This was a light, quick read. I feel like a lot was left unanswered at the end, though. I want to know more about what happened to Zaria's family, and where Lily went. I'm not sure if there is going to be a sequel or not, but I hope there is.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted May 2, 2010

    Absolutely engaging

    I was pulled into the story almost immediately - and couldn't put it down, reading the first 300 pages straight through. I liked the format with the "history/background" presented at the beginning of the chapters and the characters were great. The weaving of the story was, itself, magical...a great read and "re-read" for young adults and the young at heart. Can't wait for the sequel!

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  • Posted January 11, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    A fun read

    I'll admit at first it was a little weird that all of the chapters were only a couple of pages, but in the end I think that it still worked. The fact that each chapter started witn an excerpt from the world's history book, made me start hoping half way through that this was the first in a series (which after reading it, I believe is true). I wasn't able to predict everything that was coming, which is always nice when reading a kids book. Overall I was very happy with this impulse buy.

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    Posted October 20, 2009

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