Spellweaver: Nine Kingdoms #5

Lynn Kurland
Nine Kingdoms #5
Paperback, 368 pages
Published January 4th 2011 by Berkley Publishing Group
ISBN13: 9780425238639

Sarah of Do├Čre is finished with mages, magic, and the mayhem caused by both. Her quest to find her brother and stop his terrible spells has failed, her future lies in ruins, and her trust in Ruith shattered. What she wants is peace, safety, and a quiet place to weave. And all that stands between her and that dream is a collection of black mages suddenly hunting her, her own sense of do-gooding, and a past she knows nothing about... yet.

Ruitneadh of Ceangail has managed to ignore the magic in his veins for a score of years, hiding in the mountains until aiding Sarah with her ill-fated quest forced him into places where his past was impossible to deny. Now, faced with an ever-increasing number of former enemies knowing he’s alive and wanting his power, his choice is to accept his birthright and gather all his father’s spells together so he can destroy them, or turn away and allow the Nine Kingdoms to be overcome by his father’s evil.

Sarah reluctantly agrees to help Ruith, though she’s fairly sure she’ll do so at the peril of her life... and her heart.

At the end of book one (or four, depending on how you look at it), Ruith and Sarah suffered a capture in which Sarah was taken and Ruith was left tied to a tree. Despite the parting it doesn't take long for our heroes to find their way back to each other. Exactly twenty-one pages to be precise. But a happy reunion they do not have. For one, this is the first time being together wherein Sarah knows the truth of his identity, and secondly, Ruith is acting like a boor. All in the name of protection that is, though Sarah is very much in the dark about that. Still... the woman's pissed.

She shivered. "And just what sort of hell is His Royal Highness deigning to take me to?"
"One that leads to paradise," he promised. "And please stop calling me that."
"'Tis what you are."
"Not any longer, and there are other ways you could wound me that would hurt less."
She looked up at him seriously. "Do you think I want it to hurt less, Ruith?"

Oooo, FACE!

I was a tad confused shortly after that as Sarah kept talking about just walking away and becoming some anonymous woman. I mean, Hello! What happened to the quest of thwarting your brother's evil plot? And honestly, there's a lot of moments where you're left wondering what and why. Although, during such madness, I did enjoy the conversation she and Ruith shared with Solleirr, a very powerful mage who once had romantic interest in Ruith's mother. And really enjoyed finding Runach, one of Ruith's long lost brothers. The garden though, a place that would slay him or welcome him, took the cake in the what the hell were you thinking category.

I couldn't recall when exactly Ruith realized his love for Sarah but he's very aware of it in this book so all bets lie on it being some time in Tapestry of Spells. In this installment, he is very much wanting to earn Sarah's favor although he sucks pretty bad at it for most of the book. Not at all like his childhood friend (and hero of the first three books) Mochriadhemiach. But Ruith does have his charms and is quite good to Sarah when he puts a mind to it.

"I wish I'd never gone inside in the first place."
"You can blame that fully on me," he said in a low voice. "I should have left you behind, but I didn't because I am an idiot. Because I thought I needed you to find the spells. Because I thought you'd be safer with me than with Fransiscus. Because I am, again, a fool of the first water."
She almost managed a smile. "That's more than you've said to me in a fortnight."
"You told me to keep my mouth shut."

Of course, Sarah is one wacky, unobtainable female who's convinced that once the world knows of Ruith's still living existence, the women will flock and he'll want nothing more to do with her.

"I want you to court other women."
His mouth fell open. "I will not."
"Then I want you to meet other women."
"I've met other women," he said, beginning to sound faintly exasperated. "I don't want to meet any more."
"And they should be princesses."
He looked at her as if she'd lost all sense. She wasn't entirely sure she hadn't. A blindingly handsome man had professed... well, he'd professed something, and she wasn't swooning with pleasure?
Perhaps she was the one who was mad.
Ruith began to scowl. "And then will you be satisfied?"
She pursed her lips. "You're humoring me."
"You're damned right I'm humoring you!"

They go on to negotiate ten princesses. Which gets amended each and every time Ruith screws up. Quite the hagglers those two. The story itself though is one of two souls wanting to be no less than they are, and finding it difficult to rise to the challenge. One desiring magic she will never possess, and the other fearful of what magic he does. It's a beautiful love story -an imaginative fantasy- and I can't wait to see how the last one ends because this baby had a doosey. We discover the truth of Sarah's parentage.... Miach had the *best* entrance as he guest appeared... Finally got a kiss between our hero and his lady love... and a grandfather was reunited with his youngest grandson. Wooh. 4 out of 5 stars.

The children of Gair & Sarait:
Keir, Runach, Brogach, Gille, Eglach, Ruithneadh, and daughter, Mhorghain.

Other books in the series: (The story of Morgan (Ruith's sister))
Star of the Morning, book one
The Mage's Daughter, book two
Princess of the Sword, book three

Ruith's story, book four:


Redd said...

At first I liked the idea and the blurb on the back of the first book. But then came the complication of names and intricacies of the story line. Or maybe I just shouldn't read spoilers on fantasy books. Kinda ruin things for me even though I do love the fantasies.

But I'm *really* glad that you enjoyed it. *smiles*

Ragan (Location 2571) said...

The thing about this series is that you *have* to read them in order. They don't stand alone as each is a continuation or progression of the other.

I had forgotten how Princess of the Sword (book three of Morgan's story) ended and when Miach joined at the end and informed Sarah and Ruith of all the happenings even I was shocked. I didn't remember so many people had died.