07 November 2011

Review: Witchlanders

Witchlanders by Lena Coakley
Publication Date: August 30, 2011
Publisher: Antheneum / Simon & Schuster

High in their mountain covens, red witches pray to the Goddess, protecting the Witchlands by throwing the bones and foretelling the future.

It’s all a fake.

At least, that’s what Ryder thinks. He doubts the witches really deserve their tithes—one quarter of all the crops his village can produce. And even if they can predict the future, what danger is there to foretell, now that his people’s old enemy, the Baen, has been defeated? But when a terrifying new magic threatens both his village and the coven, Ryder must confront the beautiful and silent witch who holds all the secrets. Everything he’s ever believed about witches, the Baen, magic and about himself will change, when he discovers that the prophecies he’s always scorned—

Are about him.

There are two reasons I had fun reading Witchlanders:
        1. It had not one but TWO male narrators, which is very rare in YA fiction today.
        2. It had an older style feel to it and it reminded me of the fantasy I read as a teen.
Those are really the only two reasons why I liked Witchlanders. Otherwise, I found the book to be just okay.

Actually, you know what, I lied. I also really liked the prose of the book and the story wasn't half bad either. Also, Ryder and Falpian: they are two very different characters from two very different/opposite environments and I think Coakley developed their relationship really well. I enjoyed "watching" the progression of their initial dislike for each other to the friendship that comes out of the trials they struggle through and the magical connection the two have. The story twist came as a surprise to me, as well, and I enjoyed that. I hate when I can predict where the story is going and then have to wait until my prediction comes true. And my predictions always come true because I'm super S-M-R-T.  ;)

The thing I didn't enjoy was the pace of the book. I thought it started rather slowly, would pick up for a few pages, and then slow down again for many more pages. It wasn't a book I just had to keep picking up again every time I put it down. The end also bothered me. Without giving spoilers, I found the ending to be solved too easily. If it leads to another novel in a series, then I like Witchlanders a lot more than I originally thought. If this is a stand-alone then I still have the same opinion of the book as a whole.

Have you read it? What did you think?


Thank-you for commenting! I always appreciate and read each one! I also try to reply to each one, but I'm really bad at this, so I apologize in advance for one (or any) I may miss. Please note, I love all of my commenters. In fact, it may be more like "in love." Comment at your own risk.