The Blacksmith’s Daughter by Arley Cole
Publisher: Musa Publishing
Genre: Action/Adventure, Historical, Sci-Fi/Fantasy
Length: Full Length (224 pgs)
Age Recommendation: 14+
Rating: 5 stars
Reviewed by Aloe
Acwellen Lex'Magen rules as liege lord of a small country bounded by forbidding mountains and powerful neighbors. When the neighboring baron, allied with a powerful wizard, attempts to take over his land, first by political, then by covert means, Acwellen finds an ally of his own in Enith Roweson, an unassuming blacksmith who possesses powers he's only known of in legends. As he attempts to unravel both the plots against him----including the nature of the monsters sent to assassinate him----and the mysterious powers Enith is only beginning to understand she has, he also finds himself falling in love with the blacksmith's daughter.
Enith is no lady. She’s the blacksmith’s daughter and is living with her uncle and his family after her father’s death. His wife tries to teach her appropriate ladylike talents, but the lessons don’t take. Enith likes working with metal and that’s it. Then a silly princess comes to town and upsets her whole life…
Ms. Cole’s words wisk you away you on a magic-filled tour of a medieval world with predators that reminded me of ones I’d met in the Lord of the Rings series. It seems everyone has a bit of magic and many don’t know how to use it. That makes the story even more fun to read.
Juliana is in love with a guardsman and doesn’t want to marry the prince. Enith must challenge the right of Juliana to claim her betrothed to stop the marriage. The challenge turns into a sword fight between the two suitors and everybody is surprised when the prince actually marries Enith, right then and there in the courtyard. However, the parents involved are NOT charmed by it.
The author gives you ambushes, invigorated fights and near death on almost every page. You won’t be bored reading this story. I especially liked the fight between good and evil; magic was used for evil and foiled by good magic. It’s easy to pick out the good and bad characters in the story and it only took me a chapter to know that Enith and Acwellen are a good match for each other. The author takes you through an early romance that matures at the end of the story and it’s a sweet tale.
Ms. Cole also weaves enough nuances in the story to let you know that the adventure is not quite over. The evil wizard is still alive, Nerian (Acwellen’s best friend) has not realized all his potential yet, and it wouldn’t be hard to develop another book to continue the story.
I hope she does, I’d love to read more about this world and the characters that people it. If you like fantasy, I know you will too!