Lark Rising by Sandra Waugh
Book One of the Guardians of Tarnec series
Publisher: Random House Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: September 23, 2014
Rating: 5 stars
Source: ARC sent by the publisher
Summary (from Goodreads):
Lark has foreseen two things—she will fall for a young man with sage green eyes,and he will kill her.
Sixteen-year-old Lark Carew is happiest close to home, tending her garden and gathering herbs for medicines. But when her Sight warns her that monsters called Troths will soon invade her village, Lark is summoned on a journey to seek help from the legendary Riders of Tarnec. Little does she suspect that one of the Riders, Gharain, is the very man who has haunted her visions. Or that the people of Tarnec have called her there for another reason: Lark is the Guardian of Life, the first of four Guardians who must awaken their powers to recover four stolen amulets. Together, the amulets—Life, Death, Dark, and Light—keep the world in Balance. To take back the Life amulet, Lark will have to discover her true inner strength and give in to a love that she swears will be her downfall.
What I Liked:
It's been only two days since picking up this one to read, and I've already re-read it. GOSH, THIS BOOK WAS SO GOOD!! I was worried that it would be a little unoriginal, not fresh or different from other fantasy novels, but there was no need to worry. This book was interesting and unique, not cliche or typical at all!
Lark has been summoned to face her destiny: she is the Guardian of Life, one of four Guardians with incredible powers... but stolen amulets. Life is a balance of light and dark, and at the moment, the darkness - the chaos - has Lark's amulet. Lark had no idea what she was (a Guardian), so imagine her surprise at being summoned from her village, and told that she cannot return to save the village. Lark has the Sight, and she sees visions of death (her own), a beautiful man (a Rider and an aide of the Guardians), her village being destroyed... Lark must realize her fate and find her amulet, before everything is lost.
I love this book! I love the story. This is fantasy at its finest, epic/high fantasy like The Lord of the Rings, or something. I love The Lord of the Rings. I don't know any series that can compare to that one, but let's just say this one may come close.
Lark is an awesome protagonist. You can totally see her character development, from start to finish. At first, she is a bit naive and maybe a little timid, but when she is thrust into the dangerous world of Guardians and Riders and Breeders (the bad guys), she matures and understands. I liked Lark in the beginning, but I really liked her by the end of the book.
I love the male protagonist, Gharain. Oh, he is so swoon-worthy. LET ME TELL YOU. At first, he totally despises her (when they very first meet). And for good reason! He was fooled the last time (by a Breeder), and it resulted in the death of an important noble. But then Gharain falls in love with her... and she him... and it's lovely. I love it when the characters go from "hate" to love. Although neither ever really hated the other. Gharain is brave and loyal, fierce and intelligent. Loveeeeeee.
I thought the romance would be insta-love-y, at first, because Lark sees Gharain in a vision, before she meets him. He is killing her in the vision though. But she sees him, and he interests her. Mentally, I was like, groan, insta-love. But it wasn't so! I promise! I know it sounds doubtful, but there was no insta-love, in this book. I HATE insta-love, almost as much as I hate love triangles, so trust me, I would never lead you astray!
The writing. The prose. OH MY GOODNESS. I love the voice of this book. The writing is gorgeous and beautiful and so NOT modern and I loved it so much! Seriously, it was so lyrical and beautiful! I don't know how else to describe it - poetic, maybe. But NOT poetic, because this book read like fiction, not like poetry. It's hard to describe, but basically, the writing was very distinct and very WONDERFUL.
If nothing else attracts you... well, let me tell you that this book is all sorts of exciting and maddening and heart-tugging and fabulous! I definitely caught a case of the *feels* in this one, which is pretty rare, for me. Every scene with tender moments between Gharain and Lark (which were few and far between, but totally worth each one). When certain friends had to leave. When Lark had her second round of visions about Gharain. It was like Waugh was piercing my soul!
Basically... if you haven't understood by now, know that I loved this book! And I will shout about it from the rooftops! And push it on everyone, fantasy lover or not!
What I Did Not Like:
I have to wait for book two. Boooo.
Would I Recommend It:
YES! Oh my goodness, yes! If you didn't get that feeling from my review, then shame on you, because I WANT EVERYONE TO READ THIS ONE!! Epic fantasy lover or not, you can't miss this one! Go go go!
5 (rare and very well-deserved) stars. I don't even know how to coherently and thoroughly describe my love for this book! Oh wait - be right back, going to re-read it, AGAIN!
Was this review helpful? Please let me know in the comments section!
So... yeah, I need to get this one like now, right???? *goes to check sites to preorder*ReplyDelete
Fantastic review, Alyssa!!
Basically... that needs to happen :D Especially for us fantasy lovers, Pili. THANK YOU!!Delete
Yikes, idk... epic fantasy and I do not always get along. But you've almost convinced me to try it :)ReplyDelete
Jen @ YA Romantics
Teehee! This one is wonderful, Jen, I promise. Just keep an eye out, maybe you'll change your mind by September! ^_^Delete
YESSSSS!!! I am reading this now, Alyssa, and let me tell you, you are right on the money!! It is amazing, so utterly amazing and unique!! I LOVE the breath of fresh air that Sandra Waugh breaths in this novel!! I'm already dying for book 2 in Evie's POV. Though I was a little sad to see that Silver Eve won't be in Lark's POV. But I got over that quickly, because Evie is pretty amazing too!! :)ReplyDelete
Teehee! I love that phrase, "right on the money" :D I'm so happy that you are enjoying this one! I'm sad to let Lark go... but I'm really excited about Evie. I think her story will be heartbreaking and beautiful. *sighs happily*Delete
Thank you, Alicia!
Whenever I see 5 stars on one of your reviews, I have to check it out! I'm so glad you liked this one!! The fact that it's even remotely comparable to Lord of the Rings has my interest...I will be looking into this one. Thanks so much for the review!ReplyDelete
YES! DO IT! Fantasy fans unite! You'll enjoy this one, Rachel, I just know it!Delete
You're very welcome - and thank YOU so much!!
Yay, I'm so glad you enjoyed Lark Rising. I'm drooling right now! I'm so excited for this, and I keep checking my mailbox for my copy - the wait is killing me ... I'm so glad that this has such fantastic fantasy elements as well as characters. Wonderful review, Alyssa :)ReplyDelete
EXCELLENT! I'm honestly thrilled to hear that!! It's so worth the wait though. I really hope you love this one!! And thank you so much <3Delete
This is the second 5 star review that I've seen for this one. I don't have a copy, but I get that might chance soon! We both love fantasy and this sounds amazing!ReplyDelete
ONLY THE BEST BOOK EVER. Or one of them. Fantasy, yes. OMG you will love this one, Liza! Definitely get a copy. Borrow mine!! *shoves book at Liza*Delete
Comparing it to Lord of the Rings aye - guess that means I'd have to totally consider giving it a shot then....since LOTR yeah is awesome. I've just had bad luck with Random House YA books in the past.ReplyDelete
I hope I don't hype things up too much... but yes, I definitely think you should read this one, Tabitha. I don't always *love* RH's books, but THIS ONE. OH MY.Delete
Well, you know we've talked about this on GR already, and I am BEYOND EXCITED. This is screaming, "Danielle book". I can't wait to read it. Wonderful review, Alyssa!ReplyDelete
DANIELLE BOOK, DANIELLE BOOK, DANIELLE BOOK! PUT A TAG ON IT!! I hope you love it :D Thank you!!Delete
Yaaaaaay! The story sounds awesome, so happy to hear it totally lives up! I will definitely have to check this out! Awesome protagonist and swoon-worthy male, yup count me in.ReplyDelete
Go fantasy! Great review, Alyssa!
I know right?! I was so happy to fall in love with this book. And YES, Gharain is swoonalicious ;DDelete
Thank you so much, Cyn!
I'm so ready to swoon after reading your review! I also love a great hate to love relationship, it's so much better than instalove. This book just sounds so amazing and I can't wait!ReplyDelete
Eileen @ BookCatPin
YAYYYYYY!! I'm so glad you think so! I hope you read it and loveeeee it, Eileen!!Delete
Aw, YAY :D I am so so happy you loved this book so much sweetie. <3 I'm thrilled to be a part of the blog tour. Got an email that they are sending me a print ARC of it :D Cannot wait to get it and read it. <3 Crossing all my fingers that I will love it too, hih :) Amazing review Alyssa. <3ReplyDelete
I hope you love it when you read it, Carina! Thank you so much :DDelete
The "seeing a guy (trying to) kill you Ina vision and then falling in love with him" is reminding me of Dragonswood, but since you say it's awesome, I'll give it a shot. :)ReplyDelete
I don't know anything about Dragonswood, but trust me, this one is amazing!Delete
I think this is going to be a great series, and if my guess is right, the next book is about.ReplyDelete
Highly recommended SEO Austin Don Allen site info
I hope so!Delete