What a wonderful fantasy romance!
This trilogy has it all.
A parallel world is tied to earth by magic and love. A young woman is stolen from her home and forced to live as the savior of her new world—not having a clue what is going on. There are demons, dragons, god-awful horrible monsters, and Hannah is forced to put up with a rough, huge, scary, warrior with no emotion strangely tied to her and her defense empathically (almost telepathically)—and on it goes. It’s a wonderful typical worldly fantasy, but it’s clean (though a bit gory). Does she save the world? Does she marry the scary warrior? I’ll never tell.
But the story is told wonderfully well. Even the obligatory trips to the Underworld are handled as well as possible. Evil is coming and she must stop it. Right! It’s a fun ride, without the dips into lyrical poetry and allegory which trap so many in this genre. Even the prophecy is actually readable and almost understandable, which is difficult task to pull off well.
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Spiritually, it’s another story
Now we have to talk about the spiritual content. While it’s true it is an excellent heathen fantasy, in many ways it’s anti-Chritian. Though you can see I gave it one-star spiritual content, I would have given it a minus two, if that were possible. There is no God or Satan. There are the generalized forces of Good and Evil. I almost expected one of the wise men or magical women to utter the fateful words: The Force be with you. But then that’s another story.
Though Hannah is playing the role of savior, she does it by strength of character. She develops her magical skills herself, from within herself, taught to some extent by more advanced practitioners. Her abilities are bred into her. The romance is the now typical “falling in love” in spite of the personalities and circumstances involved. All the characters become good through their excellent intellect and sterling character.
Evil is performed by people who sadly make bad choices. They are really bad choices, and the evil resulting seems really bad. But there is no spiritual evil anymore than there is any spiritual good. Horrible and nasty does not compare to a spiritual evil who hates you and will do anything to keep you out of the hands of a loving God. The universe is populated by 21st century self-made men and women cloaked in fantastic garb.
The Underworld is the antithesis of Hell. It’s not pleasant, though it’s populated by people who are only vaguely upset that they are living there. It’s actually a source of answers to nearly spiritual questions, if you can believe that. There are “good” people trapped there.
Because it’s clean, sex is written out. It’s replaced by hungry, cathartic kisses and debilitating emotional longings. It’s the typical emotional porn of the modern, clean romance: impossible things done by amazing people driven by duty and need.
I gave it four stars overall, because that is how the world will see these books. The story and characters are well crafted, beautifully done, and easily worth four stars. Spiritually it is a horrible dangerous mess. Though it is technically clean, on the spiritual level it is horribly unclean. I would not let my child read it without a serious talk about the true content. There is no truth here.
It’s very sad to see such talent in a Christian author wasted on entertainment, when it could be so much more.