I absolutely loved how this book begins. It's like the reawakening of a favorite fairy tale! The incorporation of everyone's favorite paranormal brothers is simply wonderful, especially when the reader finds out where they have been all this time!
Basically the Queen of Northern corner of Fallada is writing to the reader. She tells how the princesses, mainly the heirs to the three corners are kidnapped by the evil Queen of the West corner and sent into our world. Jacob and Willhelm are given the task to find them and bring them home. That will be hard since they are all teenagers or young adults now, they were infants when they were stolen. Time is different on each side of the wall, that's explained in vivid detailed. I won't ruin this review with any spoilers.
The further into this story you fall, the more you feel it all around you. Once you enter Fallada, it's as though every fairytale you ever heard comes alive in all new and interesting ways. I have just ONE problem with a part in the story. When the party existed the ship, they were two days journey from the Fae Kingdom. They put on the tailismens which were supposed to block out the mirrors, and yet Eranna used her mirror and easily located them a day later. After speaking with the author, there IS a small part missing that was overlooked during beta and editing that explained that Eranna was able to use the mirror despite the talismans due to how much stronger she'd grown in the dark arts. Mystery solved there and hopefully if the book comes out with a second edition that part will be added.
Adrah's abilities are simply mystifying and it's a wonder she's the queen of all the Fae. With her abilities and her heart I'm sure she could win anyone over and warm the coldest heart... Well maybe not the coldest, I doubt anyone can get through that hollow black void Eranna calls a heart.
Selena and Titus' interactions will bring the reader a whole range of emotion, most of the time a smile or a soft chuckle. They are definitely the light in the dark times they ae engulfed in.
I think the thing I enjoyed most were the desciptions of the different kingdoms. Goldun and Damu are such a contrast to each other in sight, sound, and smell, as well as the beings that are citizens are each. The descriptions are just detailed enough for you to form your own image of them, and hints of the things Selena smells waft to you from your imagination, but thankfully they aren't over done like you find in some books where the author just tries too hard. Alicia Michaels has hit the nail on the hammer with her style, it's sure to please every reader younger and old.
I have to admit, Selena's speech did bring tears to my eyes. It was very well "spoken" and had I been there I would have been the first to stand with her for the coming of the Red Dawn. I was sorry to see her story end and I hope she makes a return, if nothing more than a cameo appearance in the story of Eranna's daughter which I'm sure is the next in this series.
There's a couple of editing errors that are easily missed to the untrained eye, but nothing too drastic to turn the reader off.
I give this story 5 of 5 paws