Stolen Songbird by Danielle L Jensen (2014, Strange Chemistry) borrowed from my local library
For five centuries, a witch’s curse has bound the trolls to their city beneath the ruins of Forsaken Mountain. Time enough for their dark and nefarious magic to fade from human memory and into myth. But a prophesy has been spoken of a union with the power to set the trolls free, and when Cécile de Troyes is kidnapped and taken beneath the mountain, she learns there is far more to the myth of the trolls than she could have imagined.
Cécile has only one thing on her mind after she is brought to Trollus: escape. Only the trolls are clever, fast, and inhumanly strong. She will have to bide her time, wait for the perfect opportunity.
But something unexpected happens while she’s waiting – she begins to fall for the enigmatic troll prince to whom she has been bonded and married. She begins to make friends. And she begins to see that she may be the only hope for the half-bloods – part troll, part human creatures who are slaves to the full-blooded trolls. There is a rebellion brewing. And her prince, Tristan, the future king, is its secret leader.
As Cécile becomes involved in the intricate political games of Trollus, she becomes more than a farmer’s daughter. She becomes a princess, the hope of a people, and a witch with magic powerful enough to change Trollus forever.
Oh Strange Chemistry, how I love thee! This publisher delivers some really interesting reads, and this is no exception.
I was worried at first- it took me a good few pages to really get into it and I was thinking it was gonna be a loooong few days. But I’m not sure what happened, one moment Cecile is prancing up the road on her pretty pony, the next she’s been taken kidnap and married off to the nearest troll. Oh hell yeah! Suddenly I was locked in.
Why? It has a lot to do with Tristan. This guy made the whole narrative come alive for me. I found Cecile to be a a little weak for a protagonist. Not to say that she herself was weak, but there was something lacking in the way the narrative continued her perspective that left me feeling half empty, rather than half full. She can be sassy, and I loved those moments. Also, once she grew into herself more (I don’t want to give anything away here, so I’ll have to be a little cryptic) I started to really warm up to her.
But Tristan was fascinating. He’s 17 going on 37 (you’ll see what I mean) and just so gosh darn sexy!
For me, there were some glimmers of Yelena and Valek from the Study series (by Maria V Snyder) in this pair and I was definitely digging that quality.
The world building was great and Jensen provides the reader with a lovable cast of characters. Even the ones you love to hate! Heh heh.
It’s quite a long book (for a YA title) but I didn’t grow bored, in fact, I thought that the ‘wooing’ could have done with being stretched out further. It was very ‘light switch’. Off. Then suddenly on. Let’s make babies! Woo! Ok, I exaggerate, but still, I would have liked to have seen the romance blossom a bit more.
This books was so up my street and I was over the moon to find myself a new YA fantasy series to obsess over. An excited 4.5 out of 5. I cannot wait for the next book! Gimme!