Lament: the Faerie Queen’s Deception by Maggie Stiefvater
A new voice in urban fantasy has entered the scene. In the tradition of Melissa Marr and Holly Black, Stiefvater has created a world filled with the strangeness of faerie, strafed by their cruelty and endangered by their attention. Deirdre is a gifted musician who plays the harp and sings, but she gets horrible stage fright. While throwing up before a competition, she is helped by a boy from her dreams, Luke Dillon. Luke performs with Deirdre, together creating incredible music and winning the grand prize. But Luke is the first sign that Deirdre’s life is about to change dramatically. Deirdre starts to see four-leaf clovers everywhere and her grandmother asks her to wear an iron ring for protection. But nothing can protect her from falling in love with Luke, who turns out to be far more dangerous than she would ever have dreamed.
First, I have to say that I really dislike the cover of this book. While I can stand back and see it as a thing of beauty, it doesn’t work to sell this novel to readers. The back cover has a tumble of red nails and twisted designs that may have worked better. Stiefvater’s web site has a new cover on display which really fits the story better.
This book is hauntingly lovely, achingly filled with passion, and scarily vivid. I love the pacing of the novel where just like Deirdre, the reader is trying to figure out what Luke is. Once they and Deirdre know the truth it is impossible to extricate themselves from the situation. The book is gripping and fascinating. There are points where the reader can be a little lost, especially at the beginning, but those few moments aside the book is well crafted. The achingly tragic scenes of the love of Deirdre and Luke are the best written in the novel. Readers who enjoy doomed love affairs will find this novel very satisfying.
Recommended as a great book to hand Marr and Black fans, this novel is appropriate for ages 14-17.