Saturday, March 27, 2010

Mini-Review: Lament: The Faerie Queen's Deception by Maggie Stiefvater

Lament: The Faerie Queen's Deception by Maggie Stiefvater is a young adult (YA) fantasy book. I don't usually read YA, however after reading Christine's review for this book at "The happily ever after..." I thought this would be a book I might recommend to my niece, but one I should read first. Later when Tracy posted her own review at "Tracy's Place," I remembered it was already on my list and that I should get to it. Tracy was also generous enough to send me the book and finally this month, I read it -- thank you Tracy!
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. When a mysterious boy enters her ordinary suburban life, seemingly out of nowhere, Deirdre finds herself infatuated. Trouble is, the enigmatic and conflicted Luke turns out to be a gallowglass—a soulless faerie assassin—and Deirdre is meant to be his next mark. Deirdre has to decide if Luke's feelings towards her are real, or only a way to lure her deeper into the world of Faerie.
In Lament: The Faerie Queen's Deception, Maggie Steifvater uses Celtic Faerie mythology to weave her fantasy world while keeping the setting strictly in contemporary times. Through Stiefvater's beautiful and engaging writing, the reader experiences this creative mythical atmosphere while enjoying contemporary characters, dialogue and events. I more than enjoyed the beautiful way she mixed and balanced both. I particularly loved the lyrical/poetic ballads she included as part of the story.

Deidre, a gifted but typical 16 year old teenager full of fears she must conquer, some overtime hormones coupled with romantic idealism and a certain rebellious streak, is the focus of the story with Luke, the dark hero, sharing that focus. Their adventure was a dark one as they battle the Faerie Queen and some rather cold and scary characters that are as fascinating as the atmosphere set by the writer. Being that this book is set in contemporary times, I did wonder how or why Deidre decided to go along with Luke while having reservations about him. I questioned her judgment during those times and had to suspend disbelief to continue reading their adventures. One of my favorite characters was James, Deidre's best friend, and I wish he'd had more page time.

In this fast paced, beautifully written story, Stiefvater keeps the reader turning the pages to see what happens next as the mystery builds. While this book felt different in many wonderful ways and I enjoyed it quite a bit, there were unanswered questions and some confusing answers by the time the abrupt ending came along. There are "cloudy" patches and open-ended threads in this story. An indication there's another book in the offing, and one that always leaves me wondering if the answers to those open threads will be in that second book. Having said that, I'll reiterate that this book was an enjoyable read for me. In my opinion, Lament: The Faerie Queen's Deception is a book adults will enjoy and young adults will love. I'll personally recommend it to my niece. :) 

Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
Series: Faerie Series -- Lament (Book 1), Ballad (Book 2)
Released: October 1, 2008
Grade: B

Visit Maggie Stiefvater here


  1. That's a mini review? Wow - you put me to shame. :)

    I had really mixed feelings about the book and could only give it a "good". I just didn't like Deidre all that much and she more or less put me off the story.

    I'm glad you enjoyed it!

  2. I've recently read this novel and I kinda like it. I think it was because of the lyrical part that kept me going. The author's description of the scenery and the emotional state of the main characters were vivid I felt I was on the stage with them like a silent breeze whirling around them. I agree that there several unanswered parts which I think all will be answered on the next book. And for the most part I have grown to like D. Mostly because of her independence from her parents and her cool abilities. I'd love to hear her play too! Okey maybe I just like the author's persuassion and easy to read novel.

  3. Hmmm, I'm not a fan of Faeries, so I don't think I'll pick this one up, at least, not before reading Ms Stiefvater other release, Shiver :P However, sounds likes you really enjoyed the author's writing, so that is a good sign for me :D

  4. Man! I had to return this to the library before I got to it. I've got to check it out again. I love stories about the fae, and Maggie Stiefvater's Linger was awesome.

    Thanks for the review, Hilcia. :-)

  5. Thanks for the review Hils. This sounds interesting. I liked Stiefvater's Shiver so I'll put this on my library list. :)

  6. Tracy, this is a long Mini! I had more to say than I thought, LOL. I had some issues with loose threads, unanswered questions & some confusing answers but I did like Dee even though I worried about her and some of her decisions. :)

    Natalie, you described the beauty of this book perfectly. I'm so glad you enjoyed it so much. I would love to her her play that harp too...

    Nath, I definitely enjoyed the writing. This book is based on Faerie mythology and they're front and center as characters here. Good decision about Shiver, that one sounds like it's more your cup of tea. ;D

    Renee, if you like the Fae and Stiefvater's writing, you'll enjoy this book. I'd like to read your thoughts on it.

    Leslie, I enjoyed it and I'm passing this on to my younger niece. I'm curious to get her reactions to the book as a young adult reader. I think she'll love it. :)

  7. I'm not sure about this book....I like the Fae, but then I'm a huge fan of Melissa Marr's series and think every book would pale in comparison.

    I have Shiver on my TBR list, so I think I'll start with that book. Thank you Hils!


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