Sunday, February 27, 2011

Book Review: Summers at Castle Auburn by Sharon Shinn

Lynda Williams of Okal Rel Universe fame has written this book review.

Lynda Williams Reviews Summer at Castle Auburn

Summers at Castle Auburn by Sharon Shinn is a charming tale of disillusionment and romance set in a classical fantasy setting with some unique touches.

I picked it up second hand for the sake of the endorsements from Peter S. Beagle, author of The Last Unicorn, and I wasn't disappointed.

Image used with permission.
It's a gentle story, although the protagonist has to live through discovering the ugliness behind her rosy childhood vision of the courtly relatives. I enjoyed the fey species called the aliora, prized as slaves for their unfailing kindness even in captivity, and the many well integrated subplots.

Like many strong-minded heroines in medieval fantasies, the heroine Corie gets away with more than might be historically justified, but not so much that her choices are easy ones. Corie's training in the healing arts of her grandmother, a village wise woman, makes her independence more believable.

A manageable read for young lovers of romantic fantasy and entertaining for adults, also.

by Lynda Williams
Author Okal Rel Universe

More About Sharon Shinn

Sharon Shinn's website lists this book in the novels section where it is described as, "Named to the ALA list of Best Books for Young Adults."

Sharon Shinn writes fantasy for adults and young adults alike. On her website she lists 5 novels and 1 short story written specifically for young adults. Among these, 3 deserve special mention.
  • The Safe-Keeper's Secret, first published in 2004, "was named to the ALA list of Best Books for Young Adults."
  • The Truth Teller’s Tale was "named a New York Public Library Book for the Teen Age and made it onto the 2006 Bank Street Children’s Book List."
  • The short story "Wintermoon Wish" was published in the young adult anthology Firebirds Rising 
I enjoyed exploring Sharon Shinn's beautiful website and reading the extremely interesting descriptions of her books. Who knows, maybe I will begin to read more fantasy, a feat that I currently do on a limited basis as I am such a die-hard hard SF fan. Am I mellowing as I age? Of course, I have always loved a good romance novel!

Thanks, Lynda, for this introduction to another spec fiction author.

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