Title: The Ryn
Author: Serena Chase
Series: Eyes of E'veria #1
Audience: Young Adult
~ MY REVIEW ~
Enthralling. The Ryn was a mixture of fairytale retelling and fantasy, with a beautiful allegory woven throughout. I believe the retellings included Snow White and Rose Red and Sleeping Beauty. The fantasy world was rich, and whimsical, and enthralling. And the allegory very evident, taking a prominent place amidst the adventure and intrigue of this tale.
In The Ryn we meet Rose, a rather independent red-headed girl of sixteen. She lives with the Whittiers, a family who've become like parents and brothers to her. As for her true, blood-related family, she's only heard that her mother died and her father is unable to see her. She has to do strange things, like dye her red hair black, occasionally move to a whole new location and family, and is forbidden to know her real father's name.
She's never really questioned these oddities. Until strange things began happening. Rumors of frightening creatures called Cobelds. A letter from the king. A meeting with a bear-man. A poem about a girl with jeweled-blue eyes and flame red hair ...
Is she Rose? Or is there more to her life than she could have ever imagined?
Truly a stunning debut from Serena Chase. This novel had everything one could want from a fairytale. It was so beautifully imaginative, so fae and sweet. Yet its plot held my attention, its characters captured my notice.
The romance of The Ryn was truly lovely. It started as a friendship, and grew gently in something more. There were little moments between Rose and her knight that were so much more than physical attraction, but rather things that pointed to a true and deep love. It was so sweet, so beautifully unfolded! Very much a sweet, young love story that you don't see very much in books these days. *sigh* … what a chivalrous knight! ^_^
I wasn't expecting much of a Christian allegory when I picked up this novel, but I was greatly surprised. The depth and feeling of the allegory in The Ryn moved me to tears more than once. It was bold, and beautiful, and ever so heartfelt. When I say Christian allegories make things realer than life, I mean books like The Ryn. What an amazing testimony of God's infinite love and power. My heart was touched. Serena Chase fantastically wove fairytale with Christian allegory, it was perfect, *happily smiles*
The Ryn is definitely an adventure. From Storytellers, to Andoven, to pirates, to ennikkas, we never stop being surprised and delighted. Its an epic story from beginning to end. A fight against ancient evil. A journey to the heart of the Creator. A path to knowing oneself and their destiny ...
I would say the preferred audience for The Ryn would be about 14 and up ... but I think 12 and up would be fine too. There is a near kiss, hand holding, and talk of romantic feelings, but that's as far as the romance goes. As for violence and gore, there's nothing really of that. Cobelds may be a bit frightening to younger children. All in all, for those who enjoy fairytale, Christian allegories, fantasy, and even just historical settings and adventures ... do try out this book!!
As for myself, I'm excited to get started on The Remedy and then The Seahorse Legacy. I have found a series to cherish!