Lament: The Faerie Queen's Deception
by Maggie Stiefvater
Sixteen-year-old Deirdre Monaghan is a painfully shy but prodigiously gifted musician. She's about to find out she's also a cloverhand—one who can see faeries.
Deirdre finds herself infatuated with a mysterious boy who enters her ordinary suburban life, seemingly out of thin air. Trouble is, the enigmatic and gorgeous Luke turns out to be a gallowglass—a soulless faerie assassin. An equally hunky—and equally dangerous—dark faerie soldier named Aodhan is also stalking Deirdre.
Sworn enemies, Luke and Aodhan each have a deadly assignment from the Faerie Queen. Namely, kill Deirdre before her music captures the attention of the Fae and threatens the Queen's sovereignty. Caught in the crossfire with Deirdre is James, her wisecracking but loyal best friend. Deirdre had been wishing her life weren't so dull, but getting trapped in the middle of a centuries-old faerie war isn't exactly what she had in mind . . .
I would never have picked this up if not for the Blog With Bite group review of Ballad (Lament's sequel). I'm not a faerie fan, they just don't light my fire like vamps and weres, but this cleverly crafted and well written faerie yarn held my interest from beginning to end.
Dee is smart and rational. Yes, her stomach flutters and her knees go weak when Luke is about, but she's independent and ultimately makes the tough/right decisions all on her own. Her best friend James is PHE-NOMINAL! I wish he had been in the story more. Dee's mother and evil aunt Delia are fun characters and the relationships between the three are especially realistic.
All in all, the faeries were a a few clowns short of a circus, translation: They were uber whacked, creepy and fun! There was some lore I knew, a lot I didn't. Stiefvater's descriptions of the faeries are wonderfully vivid and their characters well thought out.
Luke Dillion was smokin', chivalrous, mysterious, patient and almost always in the right place at the right time. One of my favorite things about this guy was that Dee would get in some sort of trouble (minor or major, human or supernatural) and Luke would appear out of thin air.
After he'd helped Dee, she would ask something along the lines of "Why are you here?" and his response would always be a shrug, followed by "You wanted saving didn't you?" and then he would walk away/disappear. I think that is sooooo cool!
My only real problem with Lament is Dee is very trusting of Luke from their very first meeting. It was weird because Stiefvater has made Dee very smart and a smart girl wouldn't hop in a guy's car (who she's known for maybe 2 hours) after he pulls up in her driveway when she's never told him where she lives. No, a smart girl takes it slow and wonders, Did he follow me home last night? I should probably go have Dad dust off the shot gun just in case.
Luke also knows some personal things about her right from the start. That in itself screamed "STALKER!" but she brushed them aside and trusted him because...? Oh, because of some bond they had when she dreamed about him before they actually met.
Really? Trusting a stalker-like stranger because you dreamed about him? *Uses new and improved Stress Reduction Kit*
So...if you can get over the bit of silliness I just mentioned, Dee's story of love, friendship, and evil faeries is a solid, enjoyable read. It's romance with plenty of sexual tension, but it's clean enough for younger teens.
The Cover: Not awesome but good. The knife is pretty and gives it a dangerous allure. The clovers not only brighten the cover, but tie into the story and I like the way the blade runs through the lettering.
Trying out something new here. I love to check out first lines of books. I think they're so important so I'm putting in the opening line(s) of the book and telling you what I think.
First Lines Chapter 1: "You'll be fine once you throw up," Mom said from the front seat. "You always are." I wasn't sure about this one. At first read I didn't care for it much but it made sense and tied in better as I kept going.
Or from the prologue: "He didn't know how long he'd been clinging there. Long enough for the bone-cold water to drive the feeling from his legs." Intriguing because I know this guy is in trouble and I want to find out more about him and his situation. How much danger is he in? Will he get out? This did a good job of piquing my interest and pulling me into the story.