Thursday, March 15, 2012

Review: Magic Under Stone by Jaclyn Dolamore

Title: Magic Under Stone
Author: Jaclyn Dolamore
Publisher: Bloomsbury US Children's (February 28, 2012)
Source: Netgalley

***Warning: This review contains spoilers from Magic Under Glass. Click here to check out my review of Magic Under Glass on the YA Literature Review Blog.***

From GoodReads:

For star-crossed lovers Nimira and Erris, there can be no happily ever after until Erris is freed from the clockwork form in which his soul is trapped. And so they go in search of the sorcerer Ordorio Valdana, hoping he will know how to grant Erris real life again. When they learn that Valdana has mysteriously vanished, it's not long before Nimira decides to take matters into her own hands—and begins to study the sorcerer's spell books in secret. Yet even as she begins to understand the power and limitations of sorcery, it becomes clear that freeing Erris will bring danger—if not out-and-out war—as factions within the faerie world are prepared to stop at nothing to prevent him from regaining the throne.

Magic Under Stone by Jaclyn Dolamore is another book that I have been highly anticipating. I absolutely adored the enchanting Magic Under Glass and could not wait to continue Erris and Nimira's story. 

At the end of Magic Under Glass, I felt like the adventure was just beginning for Erris and Nimira. It was just as much a beginning as an ending. Idealistically, I always hope for a happily ever after, even though I know that there needs to be some conflict for the story. What I enjoyed about Magic Under Stone is that there is conflict -- conflict that should've been obvious, but I hadn't even thought of -- between Erris and Nimira, but their feelings for each other are still very clear. Erris struggles with living inside a clockwork body, while Nimira frets over how this has impacted him and if she made the right decision in trying to save him this way. It creates a wonderful and believable tension between them without creating a complete rift. With so many romances turning into love triangles, it's always refreshing when it doesn't. Both characters have very realistic reactions to an inconceivable problem.

Dolamore did a fantastic job blending all the stories of the characters we met in Magic Under Glass, while also introducing new characters and stories. Of all the new characters, my favorite was Ifra, the jinn. He has a complex and tragic story, just as Erris does, and his journey makes me feel for him. Magic Under Stone is told in third person and there are chapters that focus on Ifra's perspective. His story is very important to Nimira and Erris's, but was also very touching on its own. I would love to read more about him and I was always eager to see his chapters.

What sets Magic Under Stone apart from other fantasy books about faeries is the style of the writing. The pacing and the style is so unique, I can only describe it as enchanting. When thinking about all that happens in Magic Under Stone, I am surprised at how leisurely the pace felt. There was definitely urgency to continue reading to find out what happened, but the writing itself wasn't urgent. While having a complex plot and many character stories, the novel was woven together so well, that it felt simple, easy, and natural.

Magic Under Stone ends similarly to Magic Under Glass. There is a conclusion to the specific plot points in the book, but a new adventure is just beginning. I absolutely can't wait to read the third edition of this series.

Final thoughts: Buy it. 

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