Friday, August 19, 2011

Book Review: Ballad

A Gathering of Faerie...

In this mesmerizing sequel to Lament: The Faerie Queen's Deception, music prodigy James Morgan and his best friend, Deirdre, join a private conservatory for musicians. James' musical talent attracts Nuala, a soul-snatching faerie muse who fosters and feeds on the creative energies of exceptional humans until they die. Composing beautiful music together unexpectedly leads to mutual admiration and love. Haunted by fiery visions of death, James realizes that Deirdre and Nuala are being hunted by the Fey and plunges into a soul-scorching battle with the Queen of the Fey to save their lives.

Ballad is Maggie Stiefvater's follow-up to Lament. And if Lament was amazing then I'm not even sure how to describe Ballad. Out of all five books that I've read, Ballad is my favorite. James and Deirdre have left their homes to live at a school for talented musicians.

James' amazing bagpipe music attracts the attention of Nuala. She is a faery and a muse. While giving inspiration, she also feeds on the creative energies of humans. James' fondness for Deirdre lessens as he becomes more attracted to Nuala.

Nuala has been around for a long time, dying and being reborn. She has often caught the eye of a human, but not until James as the attraction truly gone both ways. Both Dee and Nuala are in danger. Which one will James save? Or can he save them both?

Ballad is my absolute favorite book by Maggie Stiefvater, and the last time I met her, she said this was her favorite as well. (Although, I think that has changed with The Scorpio Races.) There's really nothing I can say to express just how incredible I think it is. And if I tried it would probably come out in an unflattering, fangirly way. I loved James. He was sweet and charming, and I loved reading his romance with Nuala. I liked Nuala from the start, even when I was unsure if she should be trusted.

Both Lament and Ballad were beautifully written, and I can't wait for more faery books from Maggie Stiefvater.


Unknown said...

This is my absolute favourite of Maggie's books! I don't know what it was. Maybe it was just James's personality or the non-girlyness of Nuala or the fact that depressed Dee wasn't telling the story, though I loved the text messages slipped in throughout the book. Maybe it was just the way Maggie writes: lyrically, magically. Her writing flows like a kind of dance!

Can't wait to read THE SCORPIO RACES because when I went to one of Maggie's signings in July, she told me if I loved BALLAD, I'll love THE SCORPIO RACES. Also, another thing I'm really excited about it that back that there's going to be a THIRD Book of Faerie! (she announced it at the said book signing) I wonder who will tell the story. Maybe Paul or someone else from Thorn King Ash.

Great review,

- Megan

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