A good fantasy story draws you in and holds you captive until the story has finished its telling. You find yourself lost in the tale, uncertain of which world you dwell in, and once it is finished, feel as if you have dined on a masterful literary feast.
"Auralia's Colors" is just such a story.
Found abandoned as a child, Auralia is taken in by the Gatherers, exiled criminals and thieves. Soon her talent for finding colors of the unimaginable is discovered, and what she unleashes will change the kingdom forever.
You see, colors have been forbidden outside of the castle. The queen has decreed it such in the king's name, so all outside the inner kingdom are draped in dreary and dull shades. Their spirits take on the hues their bodies wear, and it becomes a struggle just to survive.
But Auralia finds joy in color. No one knows her origins, and everyone falls in love with the girl with this special gift. And as everyone knows, gifts are meant to be shared...which she does with reckless abandon.
What will happen when the king learns of her existence? Will she be captured and forced into labor for the kingdom? Will the Gatherers and Housefolk rise up in rebellion? Or will Auralia show them the way back to who they were always meant to be.
Filled with magical creatures and lavish with imagery that teases the senses, "Auralia's Colors" is more than just a story. I found allegory that paralleled Narnia and The Lord of the Rings...a richness of Heaven revealed through fantasy. And it's good stuff!
At first I lost my way. The speed with which Auralia grows from infant to young woman takes place all in the first few chapters, and it was a tad bit confusing. But once I got the thread of the story...it was all Expanse from there!!
This is the first in a series called Auralia's Colors...this is the Red Strand...Jeffrey is working on the Blue Strand...which I hope is to release soon. I want to go back to the Expanse and learn what happens to House Abascar and her people...to get lost in "Auralia's Colors" once again.
I give this stunning debut novel six out of five bookmarks...with a rainbow tassel and a feather from a red-tailed bird as a charm...and you'll just have to read it to find out why!! And I'm voting "Auralia's Colors" Best Debut Novel of 2007!!
Previously posted in September 07...and just gets better with age (the book, not the review:-) To learn more about how to get your own copy, click on the book image above.
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Carol Bruce Collett
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