Wednesday, April 15, 2015

ARC Review: Fairy Keeper

Fair Keeper by Amy Bearce

Publisher: Curiosity Quills Press, 2015
236 pages, kindle edition
Source: Netgalley
Release Date: March 5th 2015
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Magic
Links: Goodreads | Amazon US | Amazon AU | Amazon UK

Synopsis (from Goodreads):
Forget cute fairies in pretty dresses. In the world of Aluvia, most fairies are more like irritable, moody insects. Almost everyone in the world of Aluvia views the fairy keeper mark as a gift, but not fourteen-year-old Sierra. She hates being a fairy keeper, but the birthmark is right there on the back of her neck. It shows everyone she was born with the natural ability to communicate, attract, and even control the tiny fairies whose nectar is amazingly powerful. Fairy nectar can heal people, but it is also a key ingredient in synthesizing Flight, an illegal elixir that produces dreaminess, apathy and hallucinations. She’s forced to care for a whole hive of the bee-like beasties by her Flight-dealing, dark alchemist father.

Then one day, Sierra discovers the fairies of her hatch are mysteriously dead. The fairy queen is missing. Her father’s Flight operation is halted, and he plans to make up for the lost income by trading her little sister to be an elixir runner for another dark alchemist, a dangerous thug. Desperate to protect her sister, Sierra convinces her father she can retrieve the lost queen and get his operation up and running.

The problem? Sierra’s queen wasn’t the only queen to disappear. They’re all gone, every single one, and getting them back will be deadly dangerous.

Sierra journeys with her best friend and her worst enemy -- assigned by her father to dog her every step -- to find the missing queens. Along the way, they learn that more than just her sister’s life is at stake if they fail. There are secrets in the Skyclad Mountains where the last wild fairies were seen. The magic Sierra finds there has the power to transform their world, but only if she can first embrace her calling as a fairy keeper.

My Review:
Army Bearce’s twist on fairies and magic in her novel the Fairy Keeper is imaginative and it works really well. Fairies are not sweet at all. They are very fierce, Fairy Queens are not so motherly but they are very ruthless and cutthroat. Magic is not something of this world. But it is literally what holds the world together. So welcome to Aluvia a world that is literally coming undone because magic is being drained from it. Sierra is the main character, her world is coming undone too. She is a fairy keeper, one with the responsibility of collecting the magic nectar from a fairy hatch. When her father trades her younger sister to a rival, the only way Sierra can free her sister is if she finds her missing Fairy Queen and return her to her father. What she ends up finding when she sets out to do is so much more that her missing Fair Queen, she learns the reason the world is falling apart. The important things about herself and what she is destined to do about it.

Alucia is a world, full of dark alchemists and merchants who make and sell poisons and a powerful drug flight made of the nectar produced by the fairies. Sierra is the daughter of jack the most powerful alchemist. She is also one of the fairy keepers, a person who tends to the fairies and collects their nectar from them much like a bee keeper. But what the people of this world do not know is taking this nectar that contains magic that the fairies are supposed to sprinkle across the world is damaging the whole fabric of their world. As magic is being drained from their world, the world is literally weakening causing earthquakes and figuratively weakening as people are increasingly corrupt, violent and addicted.

When all the fairies die and their Queens disappear, Sierra sets off on a quest to find her Queen with her best friend Corbin and Nell, a guard sent by her father. She intends to return the Queen to the hatch so she can save her sister but soon realizes there is more at stake than just her sister’s freedom. Along the way, she grows as a person as she has to figure out what is right and wrong, in her relationships, as she must figure out her place with Corbin and Nell, and learns her role with regards to magic, because she has a destiny that is more than just a fairy keeper. Throw in a handsome faun, some villains and a dragon and you have the making of a fun adventure with a message.

My Rating:

Author Bio:

Amy Bearce was an Army kid who moved 8 times before she graduated high school. The one constant in her life was books--particularly fantasy and science fiction--and that hasn't changed.

Despite all the moves, Amy married her high school sweetheart. They met in their junior English class in an American school in Germany in 1991. They have two wonderful daughters and are hopefully passing on their love of fantasy and science fiction to them, too.

A former English and reading elementary and middle school teacher, Amy has recently completed her Masters of Library Science and is excited about a career working with kids, teens, books and technology.

Amy is a homebody with a serious addiction to personality tests, which is not uncommon for an INFP (Myers-Briggs) such as herself. (Take a free test here!) According to the DISC personality test, she is also a perfectionist, a title she hated. She immediately retook the test, changing some answers. When the results came up as Perfectionist again, she took it a third time, changing more answers to get a better result…not even seeing the irony until later.

And yes, the result still came back as “Perfectionist.”

Now, though, Amy is working on embracing imperfection, knowing full well that life is full of mistakes, that we learn through errors, and sometimes the best things in life are those things we didn't intend to happen at all.

Author Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

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