retelling of Arthurian myth, MY ONCE AND FUTURE LOVE resurrects the knights of the round table. Morgan ab Myrddin is the son of Merlin and a half-breed immortal. He sees it as his sacred mission to free his father Merlin. Merlin has been trapped by Nimue in a cave. After being wounded, Morgan seeks shelter and meets Annora of Amberton. She is the rightful mistress of Amberton, but has been displaced by her devious uncle, Sir Roger. As they journey together, both Morgan and Annora must learn to look beyond the preconceptions of society. Only with open minds can they find love. Sir Roger has disposed Annora by convincing all but her most loyal retainers that she is mad. Morgan offers to escort her to the king and gain a physician's writ proving her sanity. They are joined on this journey by Morgan's friend Ninian, another immortal. Morgan struggles against his growing feeling for Annora as he feels her strong Christian upbringing will lead her to dismiss his magical life. Can Morgan find a way to free his father, save Annora from Sir Roger, and build a life with his love? Ms. Kaufman's novel is an engaging and fast paced read. However, at times the characters come across as melodramatic. Morgan's explanation of his powers to Annora is very poorly thought out. He gives no proof, but expects her to take a new worldview on faith. This seems silly, as Morgan can control the weather, and can easily offer Annora the proof she desires. Instead, he drags her to Ninian and plays out an overly dramatic death scene. Once Annora has seen this, there is no real reason for her to reject it. She either trusts her senses or she doesn't. The author is trying to show how difficult it is to accept a new worldview, but it comes across as forced. Morgan's immortality seems like a greater barrier to the couple's happiness. Many authors create ways to transform soulmates into immortals, fey, vampires, etc. Morgan, on the other hand, accepts that he will never meet his true mate. The reader is left wondering where this places Annora. Surely there is nothing to stop her from being Morgan's mate? While the plot has a few loopholes, MY ONCE AND FUTURE LOVE is a good addition to the Arthurian romance genre and well worth a look. It is a quick, simple read for a rainy day. - See more at: http://www.theromancereviews.com/viewbooksreview.php?bookid=21727#sthash.GCt8ULOC.dpuf
An epic fantasy adventure. Timothy Brennan is a bullied loner who lives with his abusive uncle in New Hampshire. He is bullied at school because he has what has been diagnosed as Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) though it sounds more like Tourette’s syndrome. Instead of an inability to sit still the disease causes him to twitch uncontrollably. After a terrible day at school Timothy goes home and begs Uncle Jim for medication. Jim’s cruel refusal sparks another attack which somehow breaks a glass and moves Timothy’s desk. All this plus the previous loss of his mother and the rejection of the girl he idolizes drives Timothy to the edge and he throws himself into the river.
Aenya saves Timothy from the river and nurses him back to health. She is a fairy or Sidhe who has lived alone in the wilderness since the death of her father in the American Civil War. After seeing Timothy heal a bird, she has been watching him, even going so far as to enroll in his school. While Aenya is explaining Timothy’s elven heritage, and trying to talk him into return to school, they are attacked and forced to flee.
The story follows Timothy’s journey to Sidhlin. There he learns that he is the first seventh son of a seventh son born since Arthur, as well as a direct descendant of Aylwen. The Elves believe this lineage makes it his destiny to re-found Alfheim. His main opposition is Cadwaladr who wants to re-forge Alfheim in his own image and then go conquer the humans. As Timothy fights Cadwaladr’s forces, who include his uncle, and learns the extent of his own powers he becomes a leader.
Gary Nilsen’s Alfheim is reminiscent of genre greats like Tamora Peirce’s Circle of Magic series. Nilsen’s novel hooks the reader on the first line and doesn’t let go. He leaves you waiting in breathless suspense for his next book. Timothy reminds this reader of Merlin from the Young Merlin series. Nilsen blends Arthurian myth with his own world building to create a unique view of the fey. This is an author to expect great things from.
Elizabeth Ramsay is English tutor and ESL Teacher.