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Witchlanders by Lena Coakley
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Witchlanders (edition 2011)

by Lena Coakley

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1562276,544 (3.77)2
Member:nlsobon
Title:Witchlanders
Authors:Lena Coakley
Info:Atheneum (2011), Hardcover, 416 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:****
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Witchlanders by Lena Coakley

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Showing 1-5 of 21 (next | show all)
Falpian and Ryder are the classic example of the unstoppable force versus the unmovable person. They give witches a new twist from their different religious perspectives and upbringing. This is both an adventurous and fun read, with plenty of danger along the way to keep these two guys occupied when they aren't fighting each other.

Ryder's mother has foreseen the future, and Ryder is a part of it in stopping an assassin. It leads him to Falpian and this is where their destinies become intertwined and clearer. It won't be what they could have ever expected, but together their magic just might be enough to stop a war.

Probably the only thing I didn't enjoy about this book was how a couple loose ends were tied up without much explanation. Then there were the spiders that effectively creeped me out. I would have liked to have learned more about Falpian's backstory and home as well.

Witchlanders is a refreshing and chilling new twist to witches in the fantasy genre, with room for a sequel that I'm hopeful for.
1 vote Musefall | Jul 28, 2014 |
Falpian and Ryder are the classic example of the unstoppable force versus the unmovable person. They give witches a new twist from their different religious perspectives and upbringing. This is both an adventurous and fun read, with plenty of danger along the way to keep these two guys occupied when they aren’t fighting each other.

Ryder’s mother has foreseen the future, and Ryder is a part of it in stopping an assassin. It leads him to Falpian and this is where their destinies become intertwined and clearer. It won’t be what they could have ever expected, but together their magic just might be enough to stop a war.

Probably the only thing I didn’t enjoy about this book was how a couple loose ends were tied up without much explanation. Then there were the spiders that effectively creeped me out. I would have liked to have learned more about Falpian’s backstory and home as well.

Witchlanders is a refreshing and chilling new twist to witches in the fantasy genre, with room for a sequel that I’m hopeful for.
  Musefall | Jul 28, 2014 |
A nice after-the-war story, with an interesting world and conflict. I did wish that some of the minor characters had been more developed, but if there are more books to come (possibly hinted at but not necessary), that could change. ( )
  maureene87 | Apr 4, 2013 |
I so, so enjoyed this book. I don't stumble across a lot of new, high fantasy in the YA genre often, which is sad - because I do adore that genre.

This book has everything going for it: a shady clan in the mountain, a few crazy predictions that are somehow coming true, a former enemy bubbling to the surface, vindication, revelations, twins - oh how the list goes on.

What really impressed me was Coakley's ability to manage this rather complex storyline. There are actually two main characters in this novel (you'll notice I focused mostly on one and only briefly mentioned the second), and their stories are complicated and messy. But really, really well done. I noticed the book jacket description opted to focus on Ryder as well, and largely, I think it's due to the spoilers that are inherent to Falpain's most basic story. I actually wrote something, then opted to delete it because it was such an interesting, exciting thing that happened near the beginning of the book - I didn't want to give it away.

There are twists and turns in this one that are shocking (although the one depicted on the cover, I thought, was rather obvious) and Coakley does such a lovely job with the many plots. I would very much look forward to a sequel. A really wonderful, fun book to pick up and enjoy. ( )
  leftik | Apr 3, 2013 |
"He is not on our side. But . . . are we only allowed to care about people who are on our side?" (p.268)

Witchlanders is Lena Coakley's debut novel, a YA fantasy story set on a world divided between two peoples. The copper-skinned, blonde-haired Witchlanders worship two goddesses and are governed by the red witches, who predict the future by casting bones. Their traditional enemies, the Baen, or "blackhairs," were driven out of the Witchlands into the Bitterlands in a great war several years before the novel begins. The Baen worship a male god and practice a form of magic that involves singing (they do not allow women to participate.) Animosity runs high between the two, with anger lingering over the war and crimes committed by both sides. But there are secret histories from the ancient past which neither side remembers that have the potential to change everything.

The narrative follows two young men, one on either side of the border, one in each world, who are linked by a mysterious connection. Ryder is a Witchlander, although he is very cynical towards the witches. He lives on a small farm with his sisters, and a mother who was once a witch herself, and has developed a dangerous addiction to a swamp flower which she believes enhances her visions. When she tries to warn their village about an assassin, and monsters coming to attack them, Ryder doesn't believe her.

Falpian is a young prince of the Baen. A disappointment to his father because he never developed the singing magic that runs in his family, he is sent to a lonely outpost in the mountains, on the borders of the Witchlands, to mourn for his dead brother. Falpian has only his loyal dreadhound, Bo, for company, but he is plagued by strange dreams - dreams which somehow Ryder shares.

It turns out Ryder and Falpian share a magic bond - they are talat-sa, something like soul mates (though not romantically). They must unite to stop monsters and a plot to reignite the war between the Baen and the Witchlanders.

I found Coakley's writing smooth and readable, but style-wise the prose didn't blow me away. The pacing was good and brisk, and the twists and revelations at the end were very satisfying. There is also a good message about learning to look past things like race, religion, nationality and history, and to realize that people are people wherever they are from and yes, there really are no sides. Witchlanders is definitely a solid read, and I'll be curious to see what Coakley comes out with next. ( )
  catfantastic | Jan 23, 2013 |
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After the prediction of Ryder's mother, once a great prophet and powerful witch, comes true and their village is destroyed by a deadly assassin, Ryder embarks on a quest that takes him into the mountains in search of the destroyer.

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