From A High Tower

From A High Tower

Book - 2015
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The tenth novel in Mercedes Lackey's magical Elemental Masters series reimagines the fairy tale Rapunzel in a richly-detailed alternate Victorian world

Giselle had lived fourteen years of her life in an abandoned tower. Her mother kept Giselle, a young Air Master still growing into her abilities, isolated for the sake of herself and others.
 
This life left her unprepared when a handsome young man appeared at the base of her tower. But when the young stranger entered her window, he tried to force himself on her. She was saved by Mother, an Earth Master, who hurled the man out the window he had climbed in.
 
The Foresters of the Black Forest were Earth Masters whose job it was to cleanse the ancient forest of evil elementals, and over the next four years, they shared their fighting expertise to teach Giselle self-defense. By the age of twenty, Giselle was an expert markswoman, and it was this skill that she used to survive when Mother died. Cutting her long hair, she masqueraded as a boy to enter shooting competitions, and used the prize money to support herself.
 
But she could not forget the first man who assaulted her, for when that stranger had fallen from her tower long ago, his body had never been found. In Giselle's heart, she was certain his magic had helped him to survive the fall. Surely, it was only a matter of time before he found her and sought revenge. Was she prepared to stand against him?
Publisher: New York, NY : DAW Books, Inc., [2015]
ISBN: 9780756408985
0756408989
Characteristics: 328 pages ; 24 cm

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DBRL_KatieL Nov 13, 2017

I was not impressed with this novel. After the first few chapters, the only resemblance to the fairy tale it is supposed to be based off is the main character's hair-which isn't kept long but grows very quickly. Mostly this is the story of a young air master who's adopted mother dies unexpectedly and she must use her skills to earn a living. Giselle is skilled with a shotgun, and with the help of elementals is able to win prize money at local fairs. This works for a while, but eventually, doesn't, and Giselle joins with a traveling wild west show as their trick shooter.

Thus the majority of the book-Giselle, and Rosamund (from a previous book) traveling around with a wild west show in Germany. The 'bad guy' from the start of the book and the suspected main conflict of the book reappears at the very end and is around for a chapter, maybe two. Then everything is settled perfectly and everyone goes on with their lives.

Overall not that great, and not at the level I would typically expect from Mercedes Lackey. There were a few places where I felt corners were cut- such as when a character's name was shortened to a nickname (Rosamund became Rosa) with no explanation for the reader or an event from Rosamund's story is referred to, and the current characters mysteriously understand what happened and are knowledgeable about the event.
A nice 'filler' book if you are waiting for something else to be available, but nothing to write home about.

j
janvafa
Jul 09, 2016

Excellent - Gives an insight on how others might see things - something we seldom think about!

s
slccom_0
Jul 23, 2015

Like all of her Elemental Masters books, this is excellent!

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