Title: Fiery Arrow (The Brigid Series, #2)
Author: Sheila R. Lamb
Genres: Fantasy | Historical Fiction | Paranormal | Romance
Length: 274 pages | 4267 locations
Patrick is a young man from 5th century Roman Brittania who has a bright future ahead of him. However, something terrible happens to him and he is transported to the island of Éire, where he will know hardship like he never dreamed of.
He will also start hearing the voice of a long-lost goddess – Brigid. What is her connection to him? What does she want from him? Will she shake his faith in the one and only Christian God?
As in the previous book of the series, Fiery Arrow took me on an exciting adventure.
There were things I enjoyed more in this book than the first one and others I did not enjoy as much.
The concepts were very innovative. I had not read about magic as in this series.
As in the previous book, I thoroughly enjoyed reading about connecting with the Earth to the point of being able to extract energy from it and being in communion with it and do wish I would have read more about that.
The Irish gods and goddesses’ description and the notion of their strength depending on people believing in them was very interesting, as was the druid system presented in this book. I loved how there were various skills the clan members could specialize in and how it took decades to become a druid.
I actually enjoyed that there were no obvious good guys – everyone had their flaws. Even the gods and goddesses proved, as in the previous book, to show no mercy when it comes to achieving their goals.
The way Christianity was approached was also very new. Literature I have come across always seems to approach the conversion missions from the Christian point of view, so seeing it from the other perspective was very refreshing.
And the whole process of trying to remember a past life was tremendously engaging. Not knowing what Brigid would remember or who she could trust kept me on edge.
However, I do wish the ending would have provided a bit of closure in that aspect, as well as others. It felt rushed. I wondered why so much was happening after the 90% mark and the fact is I did not feel much closure at all.
And there were, again, things that confused me or that I did not get why they were approached in such a manner.
For example, the chronology threw me off a bit. The way the story was presented, I thought Brigid and Patrick were roughly 11 years apart, since the chapters where she is 5 years old are interspersed with Patrick’s 16 years of age. So it was extremely confusing to read that she was not born until he was 20 years old.
Even though I felt engaged throughout his trials, the fact is that I had a bit of trouble connecting with Patrick. I did not get how easy it was for him not only to keep doubting Brigid, even after she appeared to him in the flesh, even after he felt the connection to her, but also to completely ignore her request, no matter how urgently she conveyed it, to make sure that her people did not forget the Danann. Worse still, he thought she deserted him instead of the other way around. Even after she said she faced enormous danger just communicating with him and was not sure she could keep coming back because of said danger. It was difficult to care for a character who seemed so selfish and reckless of the well-being of the one he supposedly loved. That was something else that confused me – one minute he remembered he loved her and the next she was a figment of his imagination.
I felt some things kept being repeated, like Patrick saying he heard Brigid because the blow in the head made it soft, or her constant requests that he taught her people to remember the Danann. She kept saying the same things and yet he never once acknowledged her, only kept asking her to come and be with him. It was so frustrating!
And I definitely do not get why Brigid’s father did not request divorce from Sena, if he loved her mother that much and as a druid he had so much power.
All in all, I had a good time reading this. I could see myself immersed in this world. The concepts were refreshing and unique, and I am curious to know what happens in the third book.
Disclaimer: I would like to thank the author for providing me a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.
Read from Aug 12 to Aug 14, 2015