Friday, April 12, 2013

REVIEW: LIGHT AND SHADOW (Hayle Coven, #11) - by Patti Larsen

Title: Light and Shadow
Series: Hayle Coven, #11
Author: Patti Larsen
Publisher: Patti Larsen Books
Publication Date: December 12, 2012
Genre: YA, Paranormal
Reviewed by: Ellen Fritz
Source: Received for review from author
Ellen’s star rating: 5/5


Come the Brotherhood

You must be careful. I turn toward the voice, see a shape floating next to me in the dark, glowing softly iridescent, all the colors of the rainbow and others for which I have no names.

Of what?

The sound and feel of the shape is feminine. She lifts her arm and points. I see them then, below and before me, two vast armies stretching out over an empty gray plane, facing each other. But they've not yet begun to fight. I recognize witches and vampires, Sidhe and demons, other creatures I've never laid eyes on, crowding one side. On the other side are humans, feeling empty and cold, though their power crackles around them like electric fire.

You must be ready. My companion's voice is very sad, makes tears rise in my eyes. The war is coming and you only have a little time left to prepare.

When Syd dreams of a terrible battle between sorcerers and all other magical races, she is tasked by a mysterious maji with protecting the Light and the Shadow, a pair of teenagers she rescues from the veil. Forced to track down the Chosen of the Light for assistance against this new threat, Syd teams with an unlikely foe turned ally in a stand against the rise of the sorcerer’s Brotherhood.


Every time I sit down with another Hayle Coven book, it is like going on a new, sometimes horrifying and sometimes hilariously funny, journey. Patti Larsen has a refreshingly unique and evermore exciting story to tell about Syd and co. This time Syd is plagued by dreams of war. No, not a guns and tanks war; a war fought with magic between ... oh, I think you have to read it to find out! Then there are the two children whom Syd is supposed to protect; that is if they would stop escaping and getting themselves and everybody else into trouble.

I thoroughly enjoyed Light and Shadow and used every free moment to indulge myself in the adventures of Syd, Sassafras, cute Sidhe gatekeeper Liam and Galleytrot, hound of the Wild Hunt. With all the action and nail-biting suspense and a story that moves forward all the time with never a dull moment, this is adrenalized reading at its best.

Syd's character development is masterfully advanced with every book. In Light and Shadow she has more self-confidence than ever before. She is learning how to use her considerable power wisely and handles snap decisions with remarkable maturity. When an old enemy surfaces who may be able to help Syd, she has to make a difficult choice; mercy or revenge. With her mother involved in counsel affairs, her father busy co-ruling Demonicon and her grandmother occupied with coven business, she is on her own. Syd's love life is also still rather confused but, despite the hurt and stress this causes her, she gets on with her very busy life and doesn't whine and mope about it.

I'm probably carrying on and on about Syd's balanced and responsible character here but this is the best character development I have ever encountered in a series. The characters in the Hayle Coven novels are not just characters, they are real persons.

I highly recommend Light and Shadow to all readers of paranormal books and I urge you to get the previous ten books to enjoy one of the best series ever. A standing ovation for this book and its highly gifted creator!



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