Today’s entry at Science Fiction Fantasy Saturday hearkens back to the most recent book in the Clan Elves of the Bitterroot series, THE ELF MAGE. Elf Vez and his mother have been reunited after a long separation, and he hopes to learn magic and win power from her. But first he must come to understand the power structure of the clan–and he knows that most of what he’s heard so far has been lies:
Vez had been taught mages had greater power than any individual elf of the clan, but they were not taught by the Circle, those old dried up witches who believed they controlled their little elven world. They controlled nothing. This, his mother Veraena had told him, saying that several powerful mages existed in and about the mountains, elves who had evolved past ordinary magic and elven skills, and they were the reason the elves still lived.
“Long ago, Vez, very special nians and neris studied the traditions of the clan, and learned the deepest secrets the Lady of the Forest had to share.” In the reflected firelight, her face lit with excitement as she shared the tales. “When they’d learned all the Elders could teach them, they went to the earth itself, which taught new lessons. Clearing the mind, clearing the heart, becoming one with the essence of natural things opened the door for them, the santwarja.”
“A true door, Mother, a gateway to a higher existence?” Vez remembered his heart racing with elation. What marvelous creatures these Intalus must be, how powerful, how able to help others, to improve the status of all elves.
Of course, with great power comes great responsibility–or so they say. And power can be used for good or for evil. Which might Vez choose, if he has the opportunity to study this great magic? Find out in THE ELF MAGE.
Find more great science fiction and fantasy snippets at Science Fiction Fantasy Saturday’s main page–enough to keep you inside from the rain all morning!
This is a snippet from THE ELF CHILD, where the elf Astan struggles with his family obligations as well as his new relationship with the elf queen, Jelani. He’s at odds with his father, abandoned by his mother, and he’s got issues, like we all have.
Alone now on the mountain top, Astan felt the cold wind sting his eyes. Was his mother out there somewhere? He’d heard stories of her at the knees of the wise females of the Circle, a neris said to be of strong magic and dark promise. If they found her, would it change their lives? Would Daven find a new reason to live?
Might he leave Jelani to Astan to teach, then, as any nian would his partner?
His eyes scouted the horizon in all directions, slowly, as he wondered what eyes he would need to see far enough to find Veraena. Then he started back down the mountain, hoping Jelani’s sadness had passed.
Find more great science fiction and fantasy snippets at Science Fiction Fantasy Saturday’s main page.
This is a review by Kenra Daniels at Grave Tells, from last fall; for the entire no-spoiler review see here:
I was immediately drawn into the world Ms. Alexander weaves with brilliant description and multi-dimensional characters. If you’ve ever wondered how Elves deal with disputes over the throne, Elf Queen shows a strong likelihood, including mixed loyalties, subterfuge and politics.
As a Heroine, Jelani Marsh is multi-faceted, dealing with life’s challenges as so many of us do, by keeping her head down and taking the easiest path. Until circumstances force her to question everything about herself, and to come to terms with everything she’s been avoiding. Even as she faces a new way of life, with new problems, she still feels real, human, still the same person, just stronger, growing.
Asten Hawk and Daven Talvi make perfect Heroes, each with his own faults and weaknesses, and strengths. When it comes down to it, they are both prepared to make the ultimate sacrifice to save Jelani so she can take her rightful place among their people. Even though they compete for Jelani’s affections, their differences don’t stop them from working together for her best interest. Ms. Alexander manages to keep the secret of who Jelani ultimately chooses until the end, a difficult balance to maintain.
Although Elf Queen is a Fantasy with Romantic elements rather than a Paranormal Romance, I believe it will appeal to readers who prefer less sexual tension in books, and it is entirely appropriate for Young Adult readers.
Nice! Thanks Ms. Daniels!