In a world at war, a slave girl’s lethal curse could become one kingdom’s weapon of salvation. If the curse—and the girl—can be controlled.
“I raise my chin as the buyers stare. Yes. Look. You don’t want me. Because, eventually, accidentally, I will destroy you.”
As a slave in the war-weary kingdom of Faelen, seventeen-year-old Nym isn’t merely devoid of rights, her Elemental kind are only born male and always killed at birth—meaning, she shouldn’t even exist.
Standing on the auction block beneath smoke-drenched mountains, Nym faces her fifteenth sell. But when her hood is removed and her storm-summoning killing curse revealed, Nym is snatched up by a court advisor and given a choice: be trained as the weapon Faelen needs to win the war or be killed.
Choosing the former, Nym is unleashed into a world of politics, bizarre parties, and rumors of an evil more sinister than she’s being prepared to fight . . . not to mention the trainer whose dark secrets lie behind a mysterious ability to calm every lightning strike she summons.
But what if she doesn’t want to be the weapon they’ve all been waiting for? Set in a beautifully eclectic world of suspicion, super abilities, and monsters, Storm Siren is a story of power. And whoever controls that power will win.
About the Author
Mary Weber is the author of the Scholastic Pick, Christy, Carol, and INSPY Award winning young adult novel Storm Siren and the Storm Siren Trilogy. As a conference and avid school speaker, Weber’s passion is helping others find their voice amid a too-loud world. In her spare time she sings ’80s songs to her three muggle children and ogles her husband, who looks strikingly like Wolverine. They live in California, which is perfect for stalking tacos and the ocean. Connect with Mary online at MaryWeber.com; Facebook: Mary Weber, Author; Instagram: MaryWeberAuthor; Twitter: @MChristineWeber.
Read an Excerpt
Book One in the Storm Siren Trilogy
By Mary Weber
Thomas NelsonCopyright © 2014 Mary Christine Weber
All rights reserved.
FOURTEEN CIRCLES FOR FOURTEEN OWNERS."
I shade my eyes to block the sun's reflection off the distant mountains currently doused in snow and smoke and flesh-eating birds. The yellow flags above me snap sharp and loud in the breeze as if to emphasize my owner's words that yes, she's quite aware such a high count is utterly ridiculous.
Waiting for it ...
"Fourteen?" the sweaty merchant says.
Ha! There it is. Eleven years of repeatedly being sold, and it's sad, really, how familiar I've become with this conversation. Today, if Brea has her way, I will meet my fifteenth, which I suppose should actually bother me. But it doesn't.
Brea nods. "Fourteen."
I smirk and turn to watch a gimpy minstrel roaming through the marketplace, which is the closest I've ever been to Faelen's High Court. The poor guy is singing so wretchedly off-key, I want to giggle, except he might be newly returned from the war front, so I don't. Besides, his odd version of the old ballad "The Monster and the Sea of Elisedd's Sadness" reminds me of my home up in the Fendres. Have you been there? I want to ask him.
Instead, I look over as the enormous merchant grunts his nervousness and retreats from me, giving the ground a superstitious spit. He eyes Brea. "Fourteen owners says either yer lyin' or she's got the dark-death disease. Whichever it is, you best get her out of my way. I got a money business to run." He makes to hurry off toward the selling stand, almost tripping in his furtrimmed shoes.
I grin. Yes, run away in your too-little boots.
"Wait!" Brea grabs his arm. "Nym doesn't have the disease. She's just ..."
The merchant scowls at her grip on his sleeve.
She releases it, but her roundish face turns stony with determination. "She's just too uppity for the poorer folk, that's all. There's only so much a master can take of a servant who thinks she's made of better than the rest."
What in hulls? Is she off her chump? My laugh bubbles up and I choke it back, waiting for her to choke on her lie. He creeps closer and slides a look of dislike down my partially hooded face, my chin, my half-cloaked body. "She don't look uppity. She don't even look decent enough for the favor houses."
Whoa. I bite back a prickly remark about his mum birthing him in one of those dung havens and look away. Neither of them deserves a reaction. Using my practiced haughty pose, I face the lively crowd gathered like giddy children in front of the selling platform. Five, ten, fifty people. They're all smiling as if the circus with its panther monkeys and manic dwarves were performing instead of a fat guy in little boots exploiting children. Seems even decent women are desperate for extra hands while the men are off fighting a war we've no hope of winning.
The merchant chews his puffy lip and studies me, like he expects me to help coerce him. Is he jesting? I raise an eyebrow and glare at him until, finally, he grunts again and pulls up the cuff on my right arm.
His gloved fingers run over each thread tattooed around my wrist like tiny bracelets. "One. Two. Three ..." He numbers the circles slowly, fourteen in a row inked into my skin with the juice of the black mugplant. I almost feel like I should clap for him.
Good job, I mouth. You know how to count.
The merchant's face twists into a snarl. He gives me a vicious pinch below my elbow and pushes my sleeve higher up my arm onto my shoulder. I shiver and, narrowing my eyes, start to pull away, but Brea leans into me.
"You hold yourself together," she sputters close to my ear. "And for fool's sake, keep your hair covered, or so help me, Nymia, I'll break your fingers again."
I bite my tongue but refuse her the satisfaction of dipping my gaze to my slightly misshapen left hand, which I'm now curling into a fist.
"How old are you?" the dealer growls in my face.
"Seventeen," I growl back.
"When was she first sold?" This question is for Brea, but I feel his bristly glove squeeze my skin as if he expects me to alert him if she's dishonest.
"Age six. Her parents died when she was five and then she lived a short time with a midwife who had no use for her." She says this last part with a slice of disgust in her voice that's directed at me. And as much as I try to force it down, the hateful shame swells up to eat holes in my chest. She's got me on that one. Two parents, one midwife, and fourteen owners I've ruined, the latest being Brea's own husband. And it doesn't matter that I tried to warn every single one of them.
The merchant's eyes constrict. "There somethin' else wrong with her yer not tellin' me?"
"Nothing's wrong with her. She's perfectly fine. Just give me three draghts and she's yours."
"Three draghts?" I murmur. "How generous."
Either she doesn't hear or chooses to ignore me as the merchant rubs his huge, stubbled jowls and considers the offer. Although I can already sense he'll take it. Three is cheap. Beyond cheap. It's pathetic. I consider feeling insulted.
The minstrel limps by, practically giddy as he continues his fabulously bad recount of the Monster and the Sea. "'Twas the night compassion forsooooook us." He's singing, referring to the night an agreement was struck between Faelen's past king and the great, flesh-eating Draewulf. The price of which had been Faelen's children. "And the big sea, she roared and spit up her foam at the shape-shifter's trickery and our foooooolish king."
I swallow and feel my amusement over how much he's enjoying himself catch in my throat at what I know comes next.
"The ocean, she's begging for our salvation. Begging for blood that will set our children free."
And for a moment I swear I can feel the sea waves calling, begging my blood to set us all free.
Except just as with the Draewulf, my blood comes at a price.
"Blast the crippled croaker! Would someone put him out of his misery?" the merchant shouts.
A louder shout and then a cheer interrupt the inharmonious tune. Someone's just been bought for a higher amount than expected. The merchant looks at the stage behind us and smiles. Then, without glancing at me, he says, "Done," and fishes into his hip bag to drop three draghts into Brea's open palm.
Congratulations, Nym. You're officially the cheapest slave sold in Faelen history.
Brea hands the reins of my collar to the merchant and turns from him, but not so quickly as to confirm his suspicion that there's something else amiss with me. Just before she leaves, she leans into me again, and her black hair brushes against my cheek.
"Pity you weren't born a boy," she whispers. "They would've just killed you outright. Saved us all from what you are." And then she's gone.
And I won't even pretend I'm sorry.
The merchant yanks my leather straps like he's bridling a goat and leads me behind him to the side of the selling platform where twelve other slaves wait, tethered to a lengthy stretch of chain. Before he bends down to tie me in line, he pulls a thin knife from his right bootie and puts it against my chin. "Try to escape, little imp, and this blade'll find you faster than a bolcrane goin' for a baby." He breathes an extra puff of foul air up my nostrils and grins when I squirm in revulsion.
So, of course, I do what any self-respecting, uncooperative person would do. I spit into his annoying face.
"You little ..." His knife is as fast as his fury, and before I can move he's cut into my skin just beneath my jaw.
I cry out, and then bite my tongue because he doesn't deserve to see my pain.
"I'll sell you off in pieces if I have to," he says, growling.
"Try," I mutter.
Obviously the heat's gotten to me because I'm smiling a bit crazy in spite of the sting—until his arm rises. I barely have time to brace before the back of his hand finds my mouth with a force that nearly knocks me over. Warm blood gushes from my lip to join the trickle on my neck, and suddenly I'm blinking to keep the whirling world in focus. Curse him.
He yells at someone I can't see, "Get her up front and be rid of her. Now!"
The assistant pushes me to the low base of the stand. Hands shove me onto the stage as a small girl with red hair, who can scarcely be older than five, is being led off the other side. My stomach twists at her frightened expression, at the terror-filled memory of my first selling—the brief image of coming home to the midwife after my curse had wiped out her entire herd of sheep. Within hours I was sold to a man who gave a whole new meaning to the word monster.
The merchant's assistant is standing beside me. He looms over the buyers and makes up attributes about me, of which he knows nothing and believes none of. What a sideshow.
The bidding starts low. Despite the aching slash in my neck, I stare into the faces of the individuals yelling out prices, evaluating them as they freely evaluate me. Their ballooning silk hats and ruffled shawls, I swear, look strikingly similar to a pair of lady's panties I saw in the sale booth last year. These people appear well-off compared to most I've known in our kingdom. Not as fancy as the politicians from the High Court, but clearly living above the poverty of the peasants. Panty shawls and all.
The bidding begins to climb with the same frenzy the onlookers have been possessed by for the past half hour. Suddenly, a male voice clamors above the rest, "Take off the hood and give us a better look at her. Let's see what she's made of."
I scowl and lean forward, jerking on my reins to yell back,
"Why aren't you off helping win the war, you wastrel?"
"Right there, let's see her!"
"Yeah! Take off her cloak!"
The assistant grabs my shoulder. I bristle, but his hand is already reaching for my hood.
I shove an elbow into his skinny stomach, hard enough to knock the wind from him. "Don't touch me."
He yelps. Staggers back like the weakling he is.
Then the merchant swears, and before I can blink he climbs onto the stage and lunges for my wrists.
I kick him in his crotch.
He screams but doesn't crumble. A noise erupts behind me and just as I'm turning to check, two men grab my arms and the merchant is up and plows into my side, nearly knocking me over. He grips my cloak and yanks it off in one harsh sweep.
Before I can count to one, the three of them are stumbling back and tripping off the stage.
The crowd falls silent.CHAPTER 2
My HAIR SLIPS DOWN MY BACK AND shoulders and around my face like fresh snow falling on the forest floor. Pure white. I raise my chin as the onlookers stare. Yes. Look.
You don't want me.
Because, eventually, accidentally, I will destroy you.
It's what I do.
A child's gasp breaks the silence and out of the corner of my eye, I see the little redheaded girl at the outer edge of the crowd. The reins of her collar are in her master's hand. He's stalled in horror like the rest of them. But the little girl's features—they're painted in awe. Which, of course, makes a lump climb up my throat. The childlike mercy her innocence brings touches something within me. She's too young to recognize the perverse significance of my snowy-white hair and sea-blue eyes. Apparently no one's told her about Elementals, or how they are not allowed to exist. No one's told her that a female version is not even possible. That I shouldn't be.
The hush has rippled out to the market stalls. Vendors and customers alike pause to find the source of the unnatural silence. I wonder if they're terrified as well. They should be.
Offstage, the merchant suddenly lets loose a string of curses, equally distributed between the long-gone Brea and me. I find his anger a bit funny, and it effectively shatters the spell of quiet and triggers an uproar in the crowd.
"What is she?"
"How can she be?"
"Is she dangerous?"
"Yes. Very," I whisper.
"What are all those tattoos on her arms? Are those owner circles?"
"What about the markings on the other arm?"
Memorials, is what I won't say.
The assistant I knocked the wind from recovers himself when he realizes the merchant standing just off the stand is now swearing at him. He scrambles back over and tries to start the bidding up again, but suddenly even those who've named prices are ducking their heads and backing away.
A gaudy laugh erupts from the sideline. It's so melodramatic and mocking that everyone pauses to look in its direction. It's the man holding the redheaded girl's reins. His face is as strikingly cruel as it is handsome. He waves a hand in the air toward me. "She doesn't look like much! How about loaning her out and letting me test her? Let's see what she's good for!" He jerks the small slave girl's collar and struts his way toward the stage, dragging her behind him.
I force myself to look away from them both. Hold it in, Nym.
"C'mon! No one else is going to want her. Let me have her, and I'll pay you more if she ends up being worth it." The man uses his hands to boast, and the redhead's reins yank her little neck around as he swaggers through the captive audience who've parted to create a path for him. She begins to cry. He doesn't even notice.
My chest ignites. Stop, I warn my insides. She's not you.
In the back of the crowd, a noblewoman strolls over from one of the stalls. Her shimmery, gold-lined eyes match her brilliant hair and painted lips as she studies me. My shoulders smooth out. My eyes hope. "Please take me," I whisper. Before I can't control it.
Her gilded lips press together in a thoughtful line, then she turns away.
I drop my gaze on the man now standing directly below me in front of the stage.
"How about you show us a bit more skin and maybe I'll throw in an extra draght?" he hollers, brandishing a hand at the throng as if to earn their agreement.
A whimper beside him, followed by a squeak, and it's only then he seems to notice the little girl whose neck he's nearly cracked. She's sniffling and straining upward so she doesn't get hung by the collar.
He sneers at her. But she doesn't notice. Her gaze is glued on me. He looks back and forth between the two of us. Curiosity, then anger flickers across his face. I pretend to ignore it. Until he lifts the girl's reins and gives them a tug.
She winces and I grimace.
A sick grin twists his mouth. Slowly, deliberately, he raises her reins another inch so her toes are barely touching the ground He watches for my reaction.
The girl's eyes go wild. She begins to writhe and spin, trying to hold her head high enough to keep breathing.
My fingers curl into fists.
Stay out of it, Nym. Close your eyes.
An awkward hush falls. The man's perverse pleasure is tangible as again he lifts the reins. But this time he doesn't stop unti her feet are off the ground and the little girl's expression has exploded into full-blown terror. She is kicking, flailing, gasping Choking at the end of her noose.
And he's enjoying every second of it.
I shut my eyes and feel the throbbing of my own neck One ... two ... three heart pulses, and abruptly there's a pause in the air. As if the wind itself is holding her breath.
And then the sound of a choked spasm, so fragile in its hopelessness, signaling what I already knew.
He's going to let her die.
But I can't.
Thick clouds descend on the marketplace in a swirling rush and darken the sun. They sharpen the friction in the atmosphere, engaging with my infuriated blood, my skin. Sickened I open my eyes in time to see faces draw upward. Their expressions slowly alter from humor to horror.
I'm so sorry, I want to say. But all you fancy people in your pretty shawls? You should know better.
Shouts pick up. "What's going on? Is she doing that?"
The cold sets in. My body shivers, followed by heat rippling along my skin's pale surface.
The little girl's owner lowers the reins and stares at me. As does the noblewoman in back with the gold-rimmed eyes. Is it in fear? Fascination? I don't know which and I don't care.
Excerpted from Storm Siren by Mary Weber. Copyright © 2014 Mary Christine Weber. Excerpted by permission of Thomas Nelson.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Storm Siren. This fantasy is as intense as a hail storm, and it's crackling with magic. The tale is terrifying at times, and then it rains down beauty. Why do I think you should hurry to sneak Storm Siren in as your last Summer-2014-Read? Well, we have.... A heroine, who can call a storm out from inside her soul and pour it on the world. Nymia's power is deadly and she cannot force it down, cannot cut it out of her soul, cannot beat it into submission. She has been bought and sold 14 times and has 14 tattoos sliced into her arm and a left hand full of crippled fingers to prove it. She is rejected again and again, and lives under condemnation. She is shattered, and she feels like she deserves to be broken because of what her curse has caused. A Kingdom, under attack, a kingdom of black roads and wheat fields and green mountains and slave markets and evil creatures. A Kingdom where Nym is supposed to be trained as a precision weapon, and used even more to destroy the enemies. Her trainer seems like a man without a soul, unable to care about anybody. Yet he doesn't seem to want to control Nym, as she had expected. And when she is with him, her storms don't feel suppressed, but gentled. And it's all narrated from Nymia's mouth, first person. We are inside her head, inside her desperation, inside her constant fight against herself. As a "freak of nature" she shouldn't exist, and surely no goodness can come of her power. And the whole time, we readers know that she was created this way for a purpose... and it shall soon be made clear. This book is 330 well-used pages long, and this is the first book in a trilogy. (Be warned... the ending of Storm Siren will make you crazy with curiosity!!!) I think this will be a great series to follow over the coming two years. A heroine who reminds us of ourselves, a glimpse of love in a strange place, great themes to think about, and adventure aplenty. Thank you Booklook Bloggers for my review copy!
Storm Siren by Mary Weber is one of the most eye opening and delightful novels I have had the pleasure of reading. Usually when authors attempt to create a completely different world, they often come short due to over or under complication of the story. But Weber has found a way to successfully tell this unique story in a way that invokes thought and imagination. I admit that the start of this story was quite slow but when the action started to pick up, I was immediately engrossed in this world. Faelen is described as a beautiful magical world with royals and magical beings. The protagonist, Nym, is the only female elemental born into the world that has only ever had male elementals. Elementals are described as the most powerful magical beings in this world but that doesn’t seem to be an issue due to a law that states every baby elemental is to be killed at birth. Orphaned at the age of five, Nym is thrust into the world of slavery, though this isn’t her biggest problem. She finds herself more powerful than she could ever have imagined and ends up killing countless people. After being bought by her fifteenth owner, her world is turned upside down as her owner gives her a choice; be trained as a weapon or to be killed. Weber wasn’t afraid to add certain plot twists within this fantasy romance that most authors surely wouldn’t dare to, but in the end, it proved to be necessary. Overall, I believe this novel is a must read for fantasy lovers.
I admit it, I was first interested in this book because of the cover. Can you blame me? I love a kick butt girl and though she is a slave there’s nothing weak about Nym, she’s tough. Her attitude when she gets a new owner is setting down what she will and won’t put up with. (and it’s not work she’s concerned about.) I have the impression she’s had a rough time of it. Her past is well done except for the occasional flashback to her parents’ deaths. (which I didn’t find necessary.) There was a romance subplot and it’s well done. I can see where some would call it a love triangle, but it’s not. There’s no wishy-washy-ness in Nym. She’s only interested in one of the men and she makes it clear that she only considers the other her friend. The romance is slow and well done as both try to fight their feelings for various reasons. The good: Nym isn’t a perfect heroine, she’s had a hard past and her left hand was broken and didn’t heal properly, but she’s tough and spunky and I liked her. Though she’s supposed to be super powerful she doesn’t use her powers to solve her problems, they’ve mostly been the cause of her problems. Nym really grew throughout the novel, as she learned to trust people and realized that she wasn’t a monster. All of the characters were great. Adora, Nym’s new owner, is an eccentric and powerful politician, who throws crazy parties. Eogan, Nym’s trainer is gorgeous and mysterious. Breck is a blind maid at Adora’s mansion and becomes Nym’s friend. Brekk’s twin brother Colin has been training with Eogan and he’s a huge flirt, but also a nice guy. There were a few other characters but there wasn’t enough time to develop them much yet. The world building was good too and everything was explained so gradually that I wasn’t confused. Things were renamed, but all the names were simple, like terrameters for distance. I liked unique animals, which were combinations of animals like panther-monkeys and ferret-cats. The plot was somewhat but not entirely predictable, and there was plenty to keep me guessing. The Bad: There wasn’t much bad in this novel, except it felt too short. I wanted to watch more of Nym’s lessons and go to more parties and fight more battles. (There wasn’t much of the later in the book.) The worst part of this book is the ending. [Small Spoilers] It’s actually only the last page that’s bad. There was enough left open for another book and then the author decided to punch her readers in the face. (That’s what it felt like to me.) It really tainted how I felt about this book, because it was so good up until that last little bit! Why?! Would I recommend this book? Yep. Do I plan to read the next one? Where is it!
Even as a non-fan of fantasy, I am a fan of Mary Weber’s out-of-the-box, breakout novel, Storm Siren. So glad it’s a trilogy, because one dose of Weber’s quirky approach to the genre wasn’t nearly enough. I’ve been following Weber’s blog (A Girl and her Books) since its inception. Her approach to the inter-relational world of social networking and her book-recipe-family-funstuff sharing drew me in and held on. And that’s what happened again when reading Storm Siren. Disclosure: I’m not a YA person! I’m a Baby Boomer. Eeek! Old! But with that moniker alone, I qualify to stand up and cheer for Mary’s protagonist, Nym, and her strong, yet vulnerable, persona. I also appreciate the unexpected weirdnesses that flow throughout the plot and story world (for me, reminiscent of Wizard of Ozish meets Alice through the Looking Glass weirdness). Love the classics. Even more significant for me are the novel’s thematic elements of self-realization and acceptance, compassion, belonging, sacrifice and redemption. Without theme, a story is just a story. Storm Siren has substance. Anyway, I’ve got a signed first edition in hardback, just in case this trilogy and (hopefully others to follow) rise to the level of classics and best sellers that young and old(er) can all enjoy, muse over, and read again for generations. When a fresh voice with a slightly off-kilter but endearing attraction steps awkwardly and courageously onto the stage, I want a front row seat.
Storm Siren, by Mary Weber, is an action-packed fantasy with a few elements of steampunk and romance. When an advisor to the king discovers Nym’s ability to control the weather, the woman buys Nym and forces her to train to use her skills as a weapon to end the age-long war their country is losing. But Nym does not want to kill anyone. She has done it so many times on accident that being forced into killing others sounds atrocious. Unfortunately, the alternative is death. Will Nym ever learn to control her abilities and come to terms with her power? Immediately upon viewing the cover of Storm Siren, I wanted to read it. The description made me even more curious. I always love a good fantasy, especially when the main character has special abilities. Storm Siren did not disappoint me. Storm Siren was interesting all the way through, with romance, mystery, and earth-shattering power. I enjoyed the plot. There was always danger and deadlines hanging over the characters. Threats, betrayal, and secrets came from every side as Nym fought to learn control of her abilities. Nym, Eogan, Colin, and Breck went on adventures into town and the forest and heard all kinds of strange rumors. The climax was amazing and tragic, and the end was a cliffhanger. One of the themes in the book is guilt. Nym was filled with guilt for the people she killed. Eogan, her trainer, however, makes the point that the guilt is good. Otherwise, people’s lives begin to lose their value in the killer’s mind. Even though war and killing is sometimes necessary, a person must never lose sight of the value of human life. Most of all, I loved watching Nym grow. At the beginning, she was very depressed and angry because of all the deaths she had caused. She thought she was a monster deserving only death. But Eogan, her other friends, and God taught Nym that she was special, important, and loved. Her power was only complete when she allowed God into her life. I am happy to say, I fully enjoyed Storm Siren and cannot wait until the next one! I received a free copy of Storm Siren from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
I really did like this book but I had a few issues with it. I thought that the characters needed to be fleshed out a tad bit more for instance. For another I wanted more world building that I got, I felt like that part of the writing process suffered a little bit. Perhaps a bit more time spent in revision could have helped that. However the book had an enjoyable plot and a fun love interest.
This YA book has been getting rave reviews from some of my favorite authors, so when I had the chance to read it, I was excited. "Storm Siren" got off to a slow start for me, but once I got into the rhythm of the story, I was hooked. For me, I think I wanted more back story. Yes, I'm a weirdo, because usually the complaint is too much back story. But in order for me to slip into the universe of the fantasy novel I need more to pull me out of my regular world. Nym is a sympathetic character. She's been handed around like a pair of used socks, with nothing to really call her own except this elemental power that takes more than it gives. When her fifteenth owner purchases her, will she finally find a home, or just be another piece of furniture on display? Lots of foreign terms kind of threw me as well. A pronunciation guide might have helped, but midway through the book I either had my own way of saying the words or just skipped over them to get to the action. My thanks to my friends at Thomas Nelson for an advance copy of "Storm Siren" in exchange for an honest review, and major props to the artist behind the gorgeous cover art. If you are a fantasy fan, this book is perfect for you.
This was a great book. If you are wondering about reading it. Wonder no longer this book is worth any and everybodies time.
I received this from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. I don't know if I have words to describe how I'm feeling after finishing this book. What a suspense filled, action-packed, emotional roller coaster Storm Siren turned out to be! Nym is a seventeen year old slave girl. She is battered and broken, both emotionally and physically. Nym is an Elemental with the power to control the weather. She is an anomaly because Elementals are male. Their power is so great they are killed at birth. Nym sees herself as cursed. She doesn't know how to control the power coursing through her veins and is burdened with the guilt of the destruction she has left behind. Nym is purchased by a court advisor who has a plan to use her to end the war that has ravaged their country. Can Nym learn to master her power? Can Nym become something other than the monster she sees herself as? Nym has survived an atrocious past. Can she lay to rest the guilt that overwhelms her? She struggles with self-doubt but is determined to learn control. Nym will discover that politics are treacherous. Who can she trust? How can she save her country? What an unbelievable journey Nym has been on...from slave girl with no hope of a future to discovering her own self-worth and benefit to her country. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and will be picking up the second book in this series to find out what happens next.
Mary Weber in her new book “Storm Siren” Book One in the Storm Siren series published by Thomas Nelson introduces us to Nym. From the back cover: “I raise my chin as the buyers stare. Yes. Look. You don’t want me. Because, eventually, accidentally, I will destroy you.” In a world at war, a slave girl’s lethal curse could become one kingdom’s weapon of salvation. If the curse – and the girl – can be controlled. As a slave in the war-weary kingdom of Faelen, seventeen-year-old Nym isn’t merely devoid of rights, her Elemental kind are only born male and always killed at birth – meaning, she shouldn’t even exist. Standing on the auction block beneath smoke-drenched mountains, Nym faces her fifteenth sell. But when her hood is removed and her storm-summoning killing curse revealed, Nym is snatched up by a court advisor and given a choice: be trained as the weapon Faelen needs to win the war, or be killed. Choosing the former, Nym is unleashed into a world of politics, bizarre parties, and rumors of an evil more sinister than she’s being prepared to fight . . . not to mention the handsome trainer whose dark secrets lie behind a mysterious ability to calm every lightning strike she summons. But what if she doesn’t want to be the weapon they’ve all been waiting for? Set in a beautifully eclectic world of suspicion, super abilities, and monsters, Storm Siren is a story of power. And whoever controls that power will win. The Kingdom is tired. The war has dragged on and everyone desires its end. Then Nym is put up on the auction block and suddenly there is a glimmer of hope. Now Nym is being groomed to use her powers in defense of Faelen. There is political chicanery, battles, adventures and loss. This is definitely a suspense thriller that will keep you flipping pages as fast as you can read. Yes, it is set with a darker tone than most however I am sure this will change as the series progresses. Ms. Weber gives us such great characters that we are always rooting for them to succeed and get together with each other. I am so looking forward to the next book in this series from this talented author. Disclosure of Material Connection: In conjunction with the CSFF Blog Tour, I received a free copy of this book from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
I received a free copy of this novel in exchange for my honest review. Storm's Siren is a wonderful fantasy novel about turning your curses into gifts, and finding perfection in imperfection. Nym has had fifteen slave owners in her short sixteen years. She's moved from home to home since her anger caused the fire that killed her parents. In order to come to terms with the devastation she's caused, she mutilates herself to mark every death caused by her "curse". Now, her new owner, a rather strange woman, insists that Nym can be trained to control her storms and thereby be a pivotal weapon in the war between kingdoms. Nym, on the other hand, sees it as a curse and struggles with the guilt of the pain she has caused. I loved the relationship between Breck, Colin, and Nym. They became fast friends right from the start. The budding romance between Eogan and Nym took my breath away. I loved watching it grow and the world that Mary Weber has created is absolutely amazing, she has written a fantastic novel. The story does leave us hanging and I absolutely cannot wait to read the next book in the series.
From the first page I was hooked on Storm Siren, and I loved it all the way until the end when I reached one of the worst cliffhangers ever. At the center of this book is one broken but powerful girl. But as I became caught up in Nym's personal journey and emotions, I found many more surprises and a lot greater action than I ever anticipated. At times the heart-aching tale of one girl, and at others a heart pounding rush filled with shocking revelations, political schemes and awe inspiring abilities, Storm Siren drew me in entirely.
This was an awesome book! Very well written, the story grabs you from the get-go and doesn't let go! You fall fast in love with the characters and story. I couldn't put it down! I would recommend this book to any and all of my friends! I can't wait for book two! No, seriously...is book 2 here yet?? :-)
Wow. That’s honestly all that I can say about this book. Astoundingly amazing. (I received a copy of this book from BookLookBloggers in exchange for my honest opinion.) And can I say that I am so thankful to have gotten a copy? “”I raise my chin as the buyers stare. Yes. Look. You don’t want me. Because, eventually, accidentally, I will destroy you.” In a world at war, a slave girl’s lethal curse could become one kingdom’s weapon of salvation. If the curse—and the girl—can be controlled. As a slave in the war-weary kingdom of Faelen, seventeen-year-old Nym isn’t merely devoid of rights, her Elemental kind are only born male and always killed at birth—meaning, she shouldn’t even exist. Standing on the auction block beneath smoke-drenched mountains, Nym faces her fifteenth sell. But when her hood is removed and her storm-summoning killing curse revealed, Nym is snatched up by a court advisor and given a choice: be trained as the weapon Faelen needs to win the war, or be killed. Choosing the former, Nym is unleashed into a world of politics, bizarre parties, and rumors of an evil more sinister than she’s being prepared to fight . . . not to mention the handsome trainer whose dark secrets lie behind a mysterious ability to calm every lightning strike she summons. But what if she doesn’t want to be the weapon they’ve all been waiting for? Set in a beautifully eclectic world of suspicion, super abilities, and monsters, Storm Siren is a story of power. And whoever controls that power will win.” – From the BookLook Bloggers website. Okay, let me just say, first of all.. that I am not spoiling anything about this novel. You need, need, NEED to pick up a copy of it. It’s amazing. The character progression and development is one of the most astounding things that I’ve encountered in some time. Honestly, it’s rare that a novel can really shock me, really have twists and turns that I didn’t guess, but this novel did just that. The writing is so enchantingly and amazingly done that I can do nothing other than to bow down to the author’s ability to spin the written word and stare in awe. The language is gorgeous, the descriptions breathtaking… all and all, the level of writing is something that I can completely appreciate and find myself studying. Written in first person, I really and truly felt like I was seeing the entire story from the eyes of Nym, our main character. Honestly, as far as the characters go? Spot on! From Breck and Colin (who were heartrendingly wonderful), to Adora (who I did not Adore)… to Eogan, who I completely and utterly loved. I usually don’t have emotional attachments to each of the characters, but I really did in this novel. The author did an amazing job of putting forth effort for each character, so that as the plot progresses, and we see more of them spill forward, we are on the edge of our seat waiting to grasp at what will be revealed next. As far as the actual story, as I mentioned above, it was completely amazing. There are fantasy elements, along with romance, adventure, a lot of action, and some fantastic fighting and war scenes. It’s a story that will make you laugh, and is guaranteed to make you cry if you have a heart at all. Weber is extremely talented in her ability to weave a tale, and I applaud her for how she laid it out. The book was fast paced, so I never found a point where I was bored… instead, I just wanted to continue to flip the pages over and over, until I got to the end of the story… and that ending. What a doozy! It’s a shocking, unexpected, cliff hanger that has me begging for the second novel! Full marks, hands down, 5/5 stars, if we’re going on a stars rating. I just can’t give this book enough praise. You really need to pick it up and read it for yourself!
Exciting book. Love the characters and twists
I couldn't stomach Nym...so melodramatic, she was sickening. I'd better stop here as I have absolutely nothing good to say about this book.
Be prepared for a tale full of twists and turns that will knock you off your feet and steal the very breath from your lungs. Infused with the powers of the Elementals Storm Siren has everything a YA Fantasy novel should posses. Epic battles, devastating loss, search for purpose, simmering romance, bad guys that are the most vicious sort of people and good guys that will sacrifice everything for the good of the people. Nym has totally swept me into her world and I am looking forward to reading the next books in the series (which I was SMART this time around and placed all three books on hold at the same time at my library). While the elements of faith are not blatantly in your face. I do recognize the threads weaving through the story. The constant battle between good and evil, the enemy being a deceiver, the good sacrificing everything. But maybe most importantly is seeing what is inside ourselves...and recognizing it for the GIFT it is rather than a curse. If you enjoy Young Adult Fantasy with clean content and decent morals, you should definitely check this series out! Stay tuned for my thoughts on the remainder of the series. I borrowed a copy of Storm Siren from my local library. I was not required to write a review. All opinions expressed are mine alone.
This.... you see me. OK, maybe you don't actually see me... but imagine this MAMA sitting at her desk doing her "holla" happy dance..... Here is this fierce chick. I mean FIERCE. Like... the ONLY other character I wanted to ever be other than her was Firestorm from Spider-Man and Friends. And.. OK... Anne of Green Gables because...GILBERT BLYTHE. Nym is authentic. She is not one of those MC that you see that has it all together. Polished... not her. In control... uh, no way. Capable of a wide range of emotions... GIVE-A-GREAT-SUBSTANTIAL-YELL Yes. You mess with someone she cares about or some innocent person.... watch out. And Colin. I loved him. Loooooooved him. He is the best friend that every girl wants to have. He completely had her back when no one else did and went to bat for her every time. The writing. Oh Lord. Can we have a moment of silence..... It was PHENOMENAL. I mean breathtaking. Richness, corporeal, monumental, and textural all mixed together and merged onto a cohesive and lavish storyline canvas that should be framed and put up at the MET in NYC. The writing was dimensional, incredibly descriptive and decadent. If you are a fan of High Fantasy, you will be blown away. Honestly... I feel the need to pause for a standing ovation here.... I am a spoiler free zone as you know, but what I can tell you is this. The floor will drop from under you. Over... and over... and over again. You will scream. My jaw came unhinged probably eight times. That is a reading record. My daughter had to slide over and push my chin up. My kids laughed at me. However, I am a strong reader and would not be daunted by their lack of concern for my reading mental state. (Any serious readers out there have my back on this...) Imagine those new roller coaster rides where it looks like you are dropping off the face of the earth? Yeah... the pressure and suspense in this book was worse. My husband actually rubbed my back at one point and "suggested" I put the book down for a while. AS. IF.... Any good book with thrills will also creep you out. Some readers like full on gore while others like subtlety. I found this about 75% disturbing so there were scenes where I was seriously spooked out. Just when I thought I knew who was who and where the plot was going, Mary would through a major monkey wrench into the mix. That alone was a delectable source of tension. Endings can make or break a book. This ending broke me. My daughter heard me whimper and found me rocking back and forth. Yes... I will admit I was brain fried at the end. Emotional responses are crucial to excellent writing, and this book sucked mine like a pack of football players tucking into an all-you-can-eat buffet after beating their main rival in overtime. Be prepared with your favorite plush and a carton of ice cream. The secondary characters were just as thought out and executed brilliantly as the main. Scenery was lushly described. Pacing was perfection. Can you tell I'm seriously giddy about this book? I hadn't had such a visceral response in a while from a book. The pretzel twisting plot had me in a tizzy. When I realized I could get the next installment since it is already on shelves, I wanted to write this now because I will be riding like De Ville out for revenge to the bookstore and tucking in till I've finished. You NEED this book. I NEED this book. So I am dragging the kids into the car with promises of ice cream cones so I can get my hands on Siren's Fury.
Man, did I get sucked into this one in a hurry! At surface level, Storm Siren is quite the enjoyable fantasy novel; the plot proves just layered enough to stay interesting to story's end yet the world building, while rich and detailed, is explained straightforward enough to be enjoyed by newbies to the fantasy genre. I also liked the variety within the characters themselves. Nym is no damsel in distress! She is strong, yet she rages like a wildcat when triggered. She also has great capacity for love, though those around her sometimes have their work cut out for them getting through those emotional walls she's put up. Then there's solid but smirky Eogan, perhaps one of the sexiest men I've met in fantasy in a long while. And for those who are always on the hunt for fantasy with a diverse cast -- male lead Eogan is described as a beautiful, dark black man! Eogan does a nice job of balancing pep talks to get Nym to believe in herself (and trust that she's not a monster unworthy of love or respect) with "I have no time for your nonsense tantrums, pull yourself together" shutdowns. Loved it! I also got a kick out of Myles, even though I was sometimes frustrated with him, as most of the time I was conflicted with what to make of him! For large chunks of the story he seems to be an adversary to Nym but then he'd turn around and offer help but then have the reader wondering about his motives. He has powers of his own, as well as a stutter that gets in the way of his trying to build up that presence of possible wickedness. Hard to truly hate someone when you just end up feeling bad for them! Underneath the fun fantasy adventure though, what I truly appreciated was the powerful, motivational message at the heart of the novel: that what you think might be a flaw within you might actually end up being your greatest strength, if you only learn to harness it rather than fight it. Nym spends so many years fighting this guilty feeling that she's this monstrous thing that doesn't deserve to live... until she is brought to that moment in life when she's placed in this reality where only her exact talents can save a nation of people. That's such an inspiring idea to bring to a reader -- that the thing you've spent so much time trying to stifle could end up being the one thing down the road that people will need to get them through... you just never know! So now where will Nym's new-found truth take her next? Wherever it is, you can bet she'll be more likely to have her eyes on the horizon rather than her feet!
This is quite a book, and has a little bit of something for everyone with it's paranormal and elemental aspects. It had bits of down time that drew things out a bit, but I'm curious to see where it goes.
An enchanting and captivating book that I couldn't put down.
I thought it was crappie that she killed off the love intrest and the friends before the second book
this book is amazing
This is a first.Someone might ask if the book was good,but the sample.Are you too lazy to read it yourself?What's your deal fruitcake?