To Dance In Liradon
Rating: 4.5 out of 5 Stars
To Dance In Liradon is the story of 17 year old village outcast, Brigid, and the repercussions in her life due to a chance encounter with the Faerie Queen as a child. Her link to the world of faerie wavers with her sense of duty and understanding of love.
Clarke expertly builds the reality of small village life in this tale of magic and wonder. Readers will readily fall into step beside Brigid, Connell, and the fair folk, as the story highlights the best and worst of both worlds. The craft of world building is not just held in the subtle descriptions of setting that bring the text to life, but is rooted in the believability of the interactions of its characters.
The juxtaposition of the local nobility to the gentry of Faerie clearly ground the reader with a sense of time and place. The simple cruelty of Lord Osin and the Faerie Queen highlight the commonalities of nobility. This too, echoes with Lady Osin and Midir who act as foils for the Lord and Queen – while they are notably touched with the regal attitude of their station, they are given the depths and nuances of empathy.
Brigid’s plight and search for truth in life and love, pulls the reader’s eager eyes across the page as willingly as a hand guided by a loved one. However, two-thirds of the way through the novel Brigid is left to her own devices in order to determine her ultimate path. Here, the flow of the story stutters and slows compared to the momentum of earlier. Life in the book progresses with placidity, yet in the back of the reader’s mind revolves the understanding that a favour is still owed the Faerie Queen with another 100 pages yet to read.
In the last 6 chapters, Brigid comes face to face with the reality of her destiny. The tension and anticipation Clarke rebuilds at this point is brought to a fever-pitch by the climax. The trials and perils Brigid faces fulfill the reader’s anticipation, and challenge even our own belief in the truth. This is storytelling at its finest.
Unfortunately, some readers may balk at the book’s formatting and never get past chapter one. This is by no means the author’s folly and it would be a loss for anyone to put down To Dance In Liradon because of this. While the cover catches the eye with expert use of multi-tonal colour values and ethereal promise, the front matter of the book is overly large and obtuse – contradicting the promise of elegance. Coupled with minor errors in sentence structure and language usage sprinkled throughout the text, on occasion readers may need to fight their inner editor in order to return to the splendor that is Liradon.
To Dance In Liradon is a splendid story well-rooted in the world of fantasy that is sure to quicken the heart and fever the mind.
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Review by: M.J. Moores, OCT. Author. Editor. Business Owner.
Categories: Book Reviews