Monday, March 29, 2010

Review of The Sapphire Flute by Karen E. Hoover

Karen E. Hoover has loved the written word for as long as she can remember. Her favorite memory of her dad is the time he spent with Karen on his lap, telling her stories for hours on end. Her dad promised he would have Karen reading on her own by the time she was four years old ... and he did it.

Karen took the gift of words her dad gave her and ran with it. Since then, she's written two novels and reams of poetry. Her head is fairly popping with ideas, so she plans to write until she's ninety-four or maybe even a hundred and four.

Inspiration is found everywhere, but Karen's heart is fueled by her husband and two sons, the Rocky Mountains, her chronic addiction to pens and paper, and the smell of her laser printer in the morning.

(Michele's note to Karen . . . I knew I loved you the first time I met you! If my guess is right, when you get cut you bleed ink!)

Okay, sorry, back to the review. I'm going to be completely honest with you, so if you are eating or drinking something, be careful as you read this line, you might choke, or have Diet Coke shoot out your nose. But, here goes . . . I do not read Science Fiction or Fantasy.

I know, I know, SAY WHAT????

It doesn't make sense to me either. I love Star Wars and Harry Potter. Mainstream stuff, I guess you could say. But on the whole, I'm a pretty tough customer when it comes to Fantasy, so that makes my review even better, I think.

"Why?" you ask.

Mainly because of the fact that I absolutely loved this book, and am now anxiously waiting book two. (It's hard to resist a book that grabs you up front, keeps you up late, and leaves you wanting more.) The Sapphire Flute literally did all of this for me.

Author, Karen Hoover, has proven herself to be a first-rate storyteller. Her imagination is off the charts and I found myself thinking of the story at times when I wasn't reading it.

Here's the teaser from the back of the book:

It has been 3,000 years since a white mage has been seen upon Rasann.

In the midst of a volcanic eruption miles outside of her village, Ember discovers she can see magic and change the appearance of things at will. Against her mother's wishes, she leaves for the mage trials only to be kidnapped before arriving. In trying to escape, she discovers she has inherited her father's secret--a secret that places her in direct conflict with her father's greatest enemy.

At the same time, Kayla is given guardianship of the sapphire flute and told not to play it. The evil mage C'Tan has been searching for it for decades and the sound alone is enough to call her. For the flute to be truly safe, Kayla must find its birthplace in the mountains high above Javak. The girls' paths are set on a collision course...a course that C'Tan is determined to prevent at all costs.

Even though the book is geared toward a young adult audience, I enjoyed this story and appreciated the way the author created main characters I sincerely cared about and admired. The two main characters, Ember and Kayla, are very different and have their own strengths and weaknesses, but find their way into the reader's heart as they struggle to figure out how to use their magic in the world of Rasann. Ember discovers she can see magic and change the appearance of things at will. Kayla is a musician who is given the Sapphire Flute. Thrown in for balance is C'Tan, the evil mage, who vows to do whatever it takes to acquire the Sapphire Flute. The story is beautifully layered and the reader is allowed to experience the journey through either Kayla's, Ember's or C'Tan's point of view.

With plenty of action and adventure, magic and mayhem, The Sapphire Flute is a book filled with excitement and one that I would recommend teens and adults. All I can say is CONGRATULATIONS to Karen, for making her dream come true and for giving readers an unforgettable story. Who couldn't use a little magic in their life?

To find out more about how to order Karen's book click HERE.


One Cluttered Brain said...

Yup, I am NOT a science fiction reader either. But I enjoyed this book too!

And there even was a wee bit of romance for me too...Kayla...:)
Nice review!

Karen Hoover said...

Thank you, Michele! I've always admired the heck out of you and here you are saying such nice things about MY book! Thank you for the lovely review, and I secretly thing you're right. I really DO bleed ink! lol But I'm pretty sure you do too. :D

elizabeth said...

I enjoyed Karen's book too! :)

Cheri J. Crane said...

This sounds like a very interesting book. I'll definitely plan to read it in the future. Great review, Michele. =)

Annette W. said...

It's great when a book can really grab you when it's not what you would typically read.