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Friday, February 21, 2014

The Sharpest Blade by Sandy Williams

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Terrance McArthur

Details on how to win a copy of this book at the end of this post.

In Sandy Williams’ Shadow Reader trilogy, there is a Fae Realm that’s at least continent-sized, with seventeen provinces. Gates and Fissures allow travel around the Realm and to Earth and back, and in The Sharpest Blade (the final volume), McKenzie has left all the magic behind to work in a normal-world library (actually, if you’ve ever worked in a library, you’d know that there is no such thing as a normal world there), but the life-bond she has to Kyol goes melee-crazy, and she finds herself frantically trying to go back to the capital city of Corrist.

Lena, the new queen, is facing a false-blood claimant to the throne, and there is intrigue and battle aplenty. Although McKenzie is human, she has a talent to see fae when they should be invisible, and to know where fae have gone when they fissure to another location, so they call her something that translates as “shadow-witch,” and the opposition wants her as dead as possible. Compared to everybody around her—Fair Folk who have magic powers, can appear behind you in an instant, and have been training for sword combat since childhood—McKenzie is highly vulnerable, but she’s finally getting better, thanks to bruising hours of practice and her life-bond with the fae she used to love.

Image source: Penguin

Used to love? That’s right, she is now in love with Aren, Lena’s sword-master. Aren keeps pulling away, because he knows that every rapid heartbeat, every kiss, every…yeah, that too…goes straight to Kyol through the bond.
The fighting rambles through castles and across mountains, around suburbia and down ropes, and into a coffee shop and a big-box electronics store.

Williams packs The Sharpest Blade with action and some steamy sexuality. I mean, imagine a love connection that sends blue lightning shooting across your skin. That’s hot and spicy! The McKenzie-Kyol-Aren relationships aren’t a triangle. They’re more like a mountain road with a bridge under construction.

This is her trilogy-ender, but would it kill her to come back to the Realm for more fun and games?

To enter to win a copy of The Sharpest Blade, simply email KRL at krlcontests@gmail[dot]com by replacing the [dot] with a period, and with the subject line “Blade”, or comment on this article. A winner will be chosen March 1, 2014. U.S. residents only.

Terrance V. Mc Arthur is a Community Librarian for the WoW! (WithOut Walls) Division of the Fresno County Public Library, roaming the Valley to meet the public's information needs.