Three children embark on a journey to find their brother, and in the process may find themselves.
Paperback, 409 pages
Published February 2nd 2012 by Wayman Publishing
Four Stars: An engaging and thrilling fantasy adventure.
Aliya and her family move from Earth to a distant alien planet to escape the pollution and overcrowding. They take up residence in a strange castle next to the sea. The children are forbidden from going near the water or talking to strangers. There is definitely something amiss with their new home. Then one day, Indy tells Aliya that a witch has been haunting her. Aliya is incredulous. A knocking on the door emanates through the castle, interrupting their conversation. The door opens upon a beautiful woman with green eyes. This enchantress beckons to Indy and Aliya is powerless to stop her sister from following the witch into the ocean. Five years later, the family, especially Aliya, is haunted by the disappearance of Indy. Their mother is mindstruck, a shell of her former self, spending her days rocking in the rocking chair, only pausing to cook meals. Aliya wracked with guilt decides to come clean to her father about everything she knows regarding the disappearance of her younger sister. When her father disappears into his study, she decides to follow regardless of his strict rule to never go into his private room. Aliya enters into her father's private chambers and discovers her father has vanished. She finds her brother Jack and tells him about the strange occurrence, but he brushes her aside, intent on leaving with some girl he has been secretly courting. The girl appears at the door, and Aliya immediately recognizes her green eyes. She is the witch, coming to steal her brother. Jack refuses to listen and leaves with the witch. Now Aliya is left with her brother, Vander and her sister, Skye. The three of them endeavor to go on a dangerous journey to save their family. Can they find the sword of Senack and recover their father, brother and sister?
What I Liked:
- Picking up this book, I had no idea what I was getting into. This book caught me completely off guard. It was like nothing I expected. This is a creative and thrilling read fraught with danger, brimming with fantastical scenery, imaginative characters and a story line that keeps the action coming. If you are looking for an exciting fantasy adventure that takes place in the ocean, give this one try.
- I loved that the main focus of this story was on familial bonds. This book follows the three siblings, Aliya, Skye and Vander, as they embark on their quest to recover their family. Along the way, their trust and loyalty are tested and their bonds grow even stronger as a result. I especially liked the growth in the relationship between Aliya and Skye. I found this to be a refreshing departure in the YA arena where you are constantly bombarded with romance. This book has only the slightest inkling of a budding romance.
- I loved the creativity and ingenuity in the world building and the characters. Ms. Stilson presents an undersea world with many unique inhabitants. The attention to detail is stunning.
- This book is action packed. From the moment the trio embarks on their quest there is constant activity that doesn't let up. Each turn of the page brings more thrilling encounters and new dangers. I was surprised time and time again by the direction of the story, not to mention the many exciting developments and unexpected twists. This book definitely keeps you on your toes.
- I loved the complexity of the story line and that the author followed through and brought most of the story lines to a resolution, while carefully laying out new plot lines for her next book. There is no giant cliffhanger and the reader satisfactorily uncovers the answers to the majority of the questions.
- The book even has a few illustrations. A big bonus for me. I love pictures and these didn't disappoint.
And The Not So Much:
- As I discussed, this book is brimming with unique characters. There is a lot to keep track of and at times it is a bit much. Thankfully, Ms. Stilson does provide a glossary at the end to help you keep everything straight.
- I loved that the focus of this book was all about family, yet I wished there was just a tiny bit more development on the romance. The hints are there, and the reader can sense the building of a romantic interest between two of the main characters, but it doesn't completely unfurl. I wanted that kiss...Alas, maybe in the next book.
- One of my favorite story lines was the metamorphosis of the relationship between the two sisters, Aliya and Skye. I found myself wishing that there was a more thorough presentation of what their relationship was like before their quest. There is just a brief mention that the two didn't exactly get along. I am one of those readers that likes to plot the change and the growth along the way. It was still satisfactory to see the sisters grow closer, though.
The Sword of Senack is a creative, unique and exciting read that takes you to the depths of the ocean, where you will encounter pirates, giant green hands, ice beasts, witches, merfolk, dragons and more. This book has great world building and unique characters on top of a whirlwind adventure. Be prepared for anything and everything. This was a surprisingly fun read, especially for a book that can be purchased for $2.99. If you want something different give this one a try. Ms. Stilson is definitely a talented voice, one to watch.
"I fantasized about a balmy ocean where nothing could overcome the boat. Fish swim past. Birds flew above me. The salty air danced around my skin as I sailed."
"Everything would happen the way it was supposed to. After all, chaos can be beautiful."
"The war continued until many had died for the whims of a few."
"It only took finding my heritage, to find what I always had back home," I said, "a sister...a friend."
Guest Post with EC Stilson
I am happy to welcome Elise here to the blog today to share with us a little background on her character, Calder, a bad boy mer-son, who just might have a heart of gold. He is incredibly daring and brave as well.
So here is the lovely Elise with some insight into her character. Stick around at the end for a chance to win her books.
Here is Elise:
It's interesting where authors get inspiration for characters. I always write my husband into the story. Apparently everyone has known this--everyone except me. It wasn't until I was on my last round of edits on "The Sword of Senack," that two friends told me, "Calder is Cade."
"What?" I said. "He is not. He's so roguish . . . and wild. He's the bad boy."
"Just like Cade."
I read through the story again, and was shocked to find they were right. I had to smile because the pirates in my book are completely based off of Cade's co-workers--some who punch each other in the nuts for fun. They are hilariously endearing, everything a pirate should be. Take a look at these videos Cade took at work!
Do you write your spouse or significant other into the story? Who do you use for inspiration?
Hold up ladies, that handsome dude is taken! Lucky Elise! Thanks so much for stopping by the blog today and sharing your videos of what guys do while they are supposed to be working. Boys will be boys, right?
Now for the giveaway. What is up for grabs? I have three ebooks written by the lovely EC Stilson for three lucky winners. First winner gets first pick, second gets second pick and the lucky third gets the best for last. The books are:
Click on the book covers for full details on the books. To enter just fill out rafflecopter. See Contest Policies for all details. Good Luck everyone. Big thank you to Elise for being here today and for this great giveaway. You can find Elise on Facebook, Twitter adn her blog. She really does write a funny blog.