Title: Breaking Into the Light
Author: Cynthia A. Morgan
Genre: YA Fantasy
The third book in the Dark Fey series brings the band of characters to their darkest battles. The Fey of the Light have managed to save some abducted younglings who were taken to become Dark Fey, but when Legionnaires follow them back across, complications ensue.
Evondair, a young healer who has joined the cause of Gairynzvl, the Fierce One, ends up fighting and killing a Legionnaire. Though done in self-defense, the way the dark soldier met his death while smiling makes Evondair determined not to kill again. He longs to embody peace and help Gairynzvl do more than just tear down the gate that separated Dark Fey from the world of light.
Then a band of Legionnaires come through the now-open crossing, claiming to be Watchers who have lived, hidden among the Dlalth, waiting for the coming of the One who would walk in Light and Shadow. They believe Gairynzvl is that One, and they, too, would follow him and fight alongside him.
But accepting these fully-grown soldiers proves a challenging task, one that requires all the understanding and compassion the Fey of the Light possess. Their allies balk at trusting their former enemies, and it’s only through the gift of Empathy and coming to understand forgiveness and the sufferings of the Dark Fey that any progress is made.
Yet, even as hope begins to dawn, the Legionnaires wonder if they can ever be free of the darkness that haunts them…if their master, the beautifully treacherous Imperial Praetor, will ever really let them go.
This story shifts the focus away from Gairynzvl, the savior of the fantasy world, and his emotionally-sensitive mate, Ayla, and instead examines the relationship that forms between Evondair and Kaylyya, a young elf maiden who lives in the village not far from where the Fey of the Light make their camp. It also continues to explore the character of Ilys, a shedemon who seems devoted to Gairynzvl but is unwilling to trust the others.
For a young adult story, there is a lot of talking, such as when the Legionnaires and Gairynzvl talk about their past rather than show it to the reader. There are battles, but they tend to be a bit stylized, with a great deal of attention given to which eye color met what other eye color in what forceful manner or in how the various Fey gifts alter the character’s experiences.
And the Dark Fey’s past actions seem unanimously done against their will. With the exception of the Praetor, who is evil just because he enjoys all things sickening, the Dark Fey all want to change, which makes one wonder why mutiny never broke out on a mass scale before this point.
A tale of battle, redemption, and an empathetic look at one’s stance against “evil,” this book will appeal to fantasy fans who like a story that makes them think. Full of fanciful creatures, strange languages, and exotic names, the story is a philosophical twist on the perennial tale of dark versus light.
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