Author: Shira Anthony
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Cover Artist: Anne Cain
Rating: 4.75 of 5 Stars
Publication Date: 06/08/2015
Length: Novel (~ 50K-100K)
Genre: Action/Adventure, Alternate Universe/Alternate World, Fantasy, M/M Romance
With the final confrontation between the island and mainland Ea factions looming, Taren and Ian sail with Odhrán to investigate a lost colony of merfolk in the Eastern Lands. Upon their arrival, the King of Astenya welcomes them as friends. Odhrán, however, isn’t so quick to trust the descendent of the man who held him prisoner for nearly a decade, especially now that he has someone to cherish and protect—the mysterious winged boy he rescued from the depths.
Armed with the knowledge he believes will save the Ea, Taren returns to the mainland. With Ian at his side, Taren convinces Vurin that their people must unite with their island brethren before it’s too late. When Seria and his men attack, Taren must call upon the ancient power of the rune stone to protect his comrades. But using the stone’s immeasurable power commands a hefty price—and Ian fears that price is Taren’s life.
This is the the third of Shira Anthony’s Mermen of Ea books. Again we are in the marvellous fantasy world of Shira Anthony’s creation. The end of the second book, Into the Wind, was a poignant cliffhanger, and this book takes up the story as if not much time has passed. A death and a re-birth concern the men of Ian and Talen’s ship
The whole arc of this novel feels like the final stretch of the road for Ian and Talen leading to their ultimate destiny. Will they or won’t they succeed, and what price will they have to pay for that success, is ever present in the narrative. This destiny underpins the whole story creating a subtle tension, which I enjoyed very much. Never do you feel, as though the novel is floundering, there is a story to be told and it has an ending. It is very complicated to allude to the narrative itself, as much depends on the reader having followed through from the other two books in this series. What a treat you have in store if you have yet to read these books.
The whole trilogy is a fast paced fantasy adventure. The world building is exquisite, and I love how Shira Anthony sticks by her own rules. There are no sudden discoveries of a spell or magic gift, never mentioned before, to get the heroes out of trouble. The characters suffer, and as we have seen previously, they can die. This world, though total fantasy, feels real and plausible, so our emotions are involved – we are always connected to the characters and develop a strong feeling of empathy for them.
Talen and Ian are still the centre of the action – yet in a way Talen becomes more ‘priestlike’, as he continues this journey to save the Ea, and take them to a new place of safety. Ian is still the swashbuckling, reincarnated lover of Talen, and he fulfils the role of Talen’s protector more strongly in this book. However, there is a second wonderful romance that unfolds throughout Running in the Wind. The blurb alludes to it, but I do not wish to spoil things by directly saying who the romance involves, although I’m sure many reviews will do so.
Odhrán is a fascinating character. Not human and yet so very human. Ancient and wise, and yet confused, stubborn and out of his depth when it comes to love and betrayal – he hides his emotional fragility behind a facade that only a few see beyond. His growing relationship in this novel is a triumph of understanding, by the author, of the myriad of emotions, and self-doubts stirred up by true love. The mysterious winged boy and the equally mysterious Odhrán are involved heavily in this story and I so loved their part of the novel.
This novel has action, adventure, magic, heart and emotion. The characters are complex and believable and if, as I believe, this is the last in the series…I will miss them.
I would like to thank the publisher for providing me with the eARC of this title in exchange for my honest opinion.
I have a number of paperbacks, most of which are signed, to giveaway. Over the between now (11 Mar 2017) and 31 Mar 2017, every comment on the blog (this post and all other new posts), will be entered to win 1 of these paperbacks. There are also some misc swag items, so there will be a few packs of these to give away as well.
Thank you so much for your support over the last 4 years. Prism will be closing its doors on 1 April 2017. All content will remain available, but no new content will appear after 31 Mar 2017. As such all request forms have been turned off. Again Thank you,
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