I love reading everything from fantasy to historical romances. On a constant quest for more books to read.
Seventeen-year-old Brigid O'Flynn is an outcast. A chance encounter with the Faerie Queen left her tainted in the eyes of the villagers, who blame the Faerie for the village’s missing women and children. Desperate to win the village’s acceptance, Brigid agrees to marry her childhood friend: Serious, hardworking, Connell Mackenna.
But when Connell disappears before their wedding, Brigid's hopes are shattered. Blamed for her fiancé’s death, Brigid fears she will suffer the same fate as the other village outcasts, the mysterious Willow Women. Lured into Faerie by their inhuman lovers, and cast out weak and broken, the Willow Women spend their lives searching for the way back into Faerie. When Connell suddenly reappears, Brigid is overjoyed, but everything is not as it seems. Consumed by his desire for beauty and celebration, Connell abandons his responsibilities, and Brigid soon finds herself drawn into a passionate, dangerous world of two.
When Brigid discovers the truth behind Connell's transformation she’s forced to choose between two men and two worlds. Brigid’s struggle leads her into glittering, ruthless Faerie, where she must rescue her true love from a terrible sacrifice or lose him forever.
Among the inhabitants of the small village Brigid lives in she is considered unlucky,cursed for the reason that she once as a child met the Faerie Queen herself and vanished for two days. Not long after her return her father died.
The villagers fears the faeries who steal their loved ones and as they think she is faerie touched they avoid her ,leaving her to take care of her mother and
This suits as Brigid doesnt want to get married she only wants to dance and wander the Woods. But her mother is telling her she ought to be married and to encourage the attentions of Conell who is the miller of the village but Brigid finds him too dour and practical.
Even if he is reliable and kind.
He is so kind that he even brings food to the outcast Willow women (women who were lured away by the faerie but returned to the human World. Now they are drained of all life and wants nothing more than find their way back to the faerie lands.
But despite all this he is not the true love that she dreams of finding.
But there is also the Lord Osin at the local manor where Brigid works that takes an interest in Brigid and wants to seduce her like he has done to so many other maids before her.
She realizes this can only be prevented by her marrying ,If she marries Conell she will be safe from the lecherous lords attentions and gain an acceptance from the other she resigns herself that she must do her best to love Conell.
Before the wedding Conell travels to Great Town to purchase fabric for Brigids wedding gown but as time passes and he doesnt return the villagers takes this as a sign as Brigid is truly and well cursed and decides to remove this threat to their safe existance- She is carried far away into the forest and left there.
Lost and afraid suddenly a white hart appears pursued by Lord Osin who decides he will hunt Brigid instead
“Today, you shall be my hart,” he whispered in her ear. “And because you are so fine and beautiful, I shall unmake you just as carefully. Not a drop of you will go to waste.”
Finally, he pushed her away from him. “Run.”
She is saved by the white hart leads her to safety,and as she kneels by a pond she sees the image of a strange man in the waters reflection and turns around only to see that its Conell returned at last. She is so happy to see him finally her troubles are over.
But Conell is a changed man he cares more about rambling in the forest and her company than his duties at the mill and to his mother.
Connell pulled her close against him. “Dance with me.”
“But there’s no music.” “You are right. We must have music. Meet me at the edge of the forest after your mother is asleep. I have a surprise for you.”
“I don’t know,” Brigid said, even though she knew she would. She could not bear the thought of him being anywhere without her.
At first Brigid is thrilled with this new side of him but soon doubts creeps in but he makes her forget her them. Its almost like shes in a dream. Wasnt this she what she wanted?
There were parts of this book I liked very much,and others not so much.
The lenghts to wich this this story goes out of its way to emphasize the difference between infatuation and lasting love gets a bit heavyhanded at times.
As does the moral of the story-dont go for the charming and womanizing men chose the dependable and nice guy instead so you can settle down and put away your flighty youthful ways.
Wich makes me wonder if the author thinks once you are a parent and married people cant have fun and dance and be frivolous anymore?
Sounds perfectly dull to me.
This book had its bad points but I have to admit that the author does have a beautiful way with Words,it brings enough fairytale ambience to the story without making it seem too flowery and sickly sweet.
As this story clearly takes some of its inspiration from the legend of Tam Lin and its different enough from the original story to make it a worthwhile book to read for folktale and faerie lovers.
I just wish Brigid and the author would have realized she had a third option. Ditch both guys and move in to the Willow womens hut.