HomeBook ReviewsFantasyReview: shadow hand by Anne Elisabeth Stengl


Review: shadow hand by Anne Elisabeth Stengl — 2 Comments

  1. Sir, I would respectfully submit to you that the spiritual references might be vague to readers who pick up this series in Book 6, but to most who have followed the series from the beginning their meaning is clear. I am far from a “young girl,” and I am one who finds this book both challenging and encouraging in my walk with Christ. The author tackles difficult and essential issues in SHADOW HAND, such as: mental and emotional instability, the struggles of a believer who cannot clearly discern God’s leading, God’s gracious work through the weak and unworthy to reveal His power, His persistent offer of grace and mercy to the just and the unjust, His love and patience with His children in all walks of life and levels of understanding–and so many more!

    In Goldstone Wood the characters are flawed and complex like real people, and they overcome their challenges never through their own strength and wisdom but only through the power and leading of the Lumil Eliasul, or Prince of Farthestshore, manifested in His various forms and by his various names.

    Granted, this author writes in a style reminiscent of George MacDonald’s fantasies, or of C.S. Lewis’s TIL WE HAVE FACES, which contain more subtle allegory than is often seen in modern Christian fiction. I find this style refreshing rather than troubling, but it is definitely a matter of taste. I simply wished to submit my contrasting opinion of this novel’s powerful spiritual content.

    Blessings from a sister!

    • Thank you. I believe I mentioned that the reviews on the rest of the series are very positive and that my opinion is personal. I’m glad to have your type of viewpoint in the comments. I am a man who commonly likes fantasies written by women. I just read another one last evening which I gave high praise for in my review. Some simply go far beyond what I can tolerate. This book is one of them.

      As mentioned, I have never seen the first five books. I do find subtle allegories troubling in that immature minds often do not have the life experience to sort out truth from fiction. But my bold, often blunt, style is not liked by the majority. My concern in all these things is getting readers introduced to my lord, the King of Kings.

      I suspect that this book (as is often true with extended series) should contain a warning to this effect: Many characters and situations in this will be difficult, if not impossible, to understand without reading the first books in the series. I received a copy from Bethany to review. They didn’t mention the series and I only discovered the earlier works after I got into the book and found myself so confused that I had to look for help. Once I read the descriptions of the first five books and many of the reviews I was able to get a handle on certain portions of shadow hand. But actually, I found that I had made a mistake in accepting the offer to review the book.

      Thank you again for adding your comments to balance my opinions. I don’t think I mentioned it in this review, but I’ve told it many times in my books. I REALLY dislike poetry. 😉

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