Hope Rises from the Ashes
Outskirts Press (2013)
Reviewed by Paige Lovitt for Reader Views (8/13)
Article first published as Book Review: ‘Hope Rises from the Ashes’ by L.F. Falconer on Blogcritics.
“Hope Rises from the Ashes” by L.F. Falconer picks up from where “Hope Flies on Broken Wings” left off. Collie has decided to leave home to find a fresh start in the Tillaman Realm. Believing that her true love Dugan is lost to her forever, she wants nothing more to do with the sea. She begins her journey taking very little with her but a few coins and her protective merman charm. While she is going through the mountain path to get to this new land, she shares a ride with a salt trader and his young son Natt. Tragedy strikes the father when they are attacked by a mythical creature that resembles a lion with wings. The trauma of the incident leaves Natt in shock and unable to talk. When they are rescued by two warriors from the Tillaman Realm, Collie is displeased to see that she knows Thoren. Having felt betrayed by him in the past, she thinks that his brother Morgan is a better man.
She soon discovers that Morgan is not the man she first thought he was. Having no alternatives to survive, Collie finds herself agreeing to take care of his needs while he supports her. Feeling that she lost her heart when she lost Dugan, she doesn’t realize how much of a sacrifice she has made to her health and to her sense of self-worth. As time passes, abuse from Morgan and betrayal from others convinces Collie that she needs to leave. Unfortunately, winter has arrived and the mountain pass is snowed in. Collie must wait for spring to arrive. Meanwhile surprising events are taking place back in Collie’s home of Donnel. She has more than just her family missing her. Call it what you will, fate or Divine Intervention must intercede for Collie to be found and returned to where her heart truly belongs.
Having read the first book, “Hope Flies on Broken Wings,” I already was familiar with the characters and I was happy to be able to step back into their story. Once again, L.F. Falconer tells an incredible tale that makes you feel like you are in it, not just reading about it. The extra touches of magic and mythical characters make it even more of an entertaining story. The issues that Collie faces are timeless and as she experiences betrayal and deceit she grows into a stronger woman. She has to regain the pride that she once had before it was stolen from her in “Hope Flies on Broken Wings.” While I feel that readers will enjoy both books, I recommend that they read them in order so that they can truly get an understanding of Collie’s motives in the second novel, “Hope Rises from the Ashes.”