|Paperback cover. Much prettier, I think.|
"Laurel was mesmerized, staring at the pale things with wide eyes. They were terrifyingly beautiful—too beautiful for words.Get the Deets: Goodreads»» (What is Goodreads.com?)
Laurel turned to the mirror again, her eyes on the hovering petals that floated beside her head. They looked almost like wings.
In this extraordinary tale of magic and intrigue, romance and danger, everything you thought you knew about faeries will be changed forever."
Laurel discovers she is a faerie, sent among humans to protect the gateway to Avalon. Thrust into the midst of a centuries-old battle between faeries and trolls, she's torn between a human and a faerie love, as well as her loyalties to each world. In this extraordinary tale of magic and intrigue, romance and danger, everything you thought you knew about faeries will be changed forever.
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WINGS was nothing like I expected. And that is both good and bad. Right off, the book entranced me. The best thing this novel has going for it is the world-building, the biology behind the faeries and their existence. It fascinated me to no end. I was taught the engrossing details of faerie make-up, their day-to-day lives, the existence of Avalon, all without being bored to death had it come off like a history lesson. Pike masterfully incorporated all I needed to know, both logically and creatively, within well-timed circumstances...
The faeries, you see, aren't what you and I have known to be fairies. Throw out all you've learned about them up until this point, because that knowledge doesn't apply here. Fairies, instead, correlate to plants, and their anatomy. Which is awesome! It's not very often that I find novels with paranormal elements that are somewhat science-based. Some of the things that I learned could be, I'm sure, found right out of a biology textbook! But, then, Pike simultaneously explores and combines the magical side of it all - the magic of the faeries for instance, which varies according to each type of seasonal faerie. It's an excellent blend of the reasonable and unreasonable, which tended to boggle my mind in awesome ways.
|Original cover. For hardcover.|
The realm of Avalon just added to this book's appeal, though I didn't get to venture with Laurel there physically in this first book.
Continuing, Pike's exquisite descriptiveness as far as her writing really captivated me! She depicts everything with such fine diction, while still managing to convey the wonder of the faeries - and Laurel's new, unveiled surroundings - and illuminate what's necessary, without causing the novel to drag and irritate. This thirst for her writing, to know more about this world kept me going, pushed me to keep reading as I craved to understand and discover.
But, as you might of noticed, I haven't mentioned Laurel, or some of the other characters for that matter. And that's because, through it all, I found myself liking Laurel less and less. At first, she seemed like this genuine heroine, with a healthy attitude and lightly comical personality, but that impression of her soon changed. As she began to discover her true heritage, and grow closer to Tamani, I stopped liking what I was seeing. I felt a disconnection emerge, blocking my capability of feeling anything for her.
On the flip side, I love, LOVE the two guys who've stumbled into her life. Sweet and sensible, utterly logical and safe David, Laurel's first friend in Crescent City, acts as a source of normalcy for Laurel. He's kind, and he does his best to understand her. More, he wants to understand her, comfort her, and be a part of her world. Which is adorable and charming. That makes me love him. But, Tamani, a faerie whose known and loved Laurel all her life, I fell in love with. While I got to know David more than I did Tamani, Tamani dazzled me. Maybe it's his personality. But, it's more likely to be because of his acute and unfailing devotion and love that he feels for Laurel. How, in all the time they've been apart (can't give away too much here!), he never gave up on her, but instead worked to bring himself closer to her however possible. That kind of determination motivated by feeling left me... stupefied. I couldn't help but fall for this guy, and hope that Laurel would do the same.
And yet, I was disappointed in the love/romance area. Disappointed in Laurel, for her choices and actions. On top of that, I felt like the plot was frustratingly lacking in some ways. Even though I was amazed by all things faerie in WINGS, the pacing, the time it took to get to the action took away from the feelings I was starting to build up and feel for this start to the series. It felt like it took forever for her to encounter and face-off the villain, hindering the impact of the climax and ending.
So, in all, I'm kind of torn. I don't know if I like or love this book. But, I continued to read on to SPELLS, the second installment. And what baffles me, even now, is that I was left with the exact same feeling. But, more on that tomorrow...
"'So there's magic? Real magic? It's not just all scientific like David says?'
Tamani rolled his eyes. 'David again?'
Laurel bristled. 'He's my friend. My best friend.'
'Not your boyfriend?'
'No. I mean...no.'
Tamani stared at her for several seconds. 'So the position's still open?'
Laurel rolled her eyes. 'We are so not having this conversation.'"