Monday, October 25, 2010

Review: "Crown of Crystal Flame" by C.L. Wilson

Cover and blurb from the Author's Website:

Journey Back to the Magical World of the Fading Lands.

A Song of Love won her heart.
A Song of Darkness haunted her soul.
A Song in the Dance would seal her fate.

Seers had long foreseen an extraordinary destiny for Ellysetta Baristani. Already she had won the heart of the Fey King - the magnificent Rain, ever her ally, eternally her love. She had saved the offspring of the magical tairen and fought beside her legendary mate against the armies of Eld.

But the most powerful - and dangerous - Verse of her Song had yet to be sung.

As the final battle draws nigh and evil tightens its grip upon her soul - will Ellysetta secure the world for Light or plunge it into Darkness for all eternity? As she and Rain fight for each other, side by side, will they find a way to complete their truemate bond and defeat the evil High Mage of Eld before it's too late, or must they make the ultimate sacrifice to save their world?

My Thoughts:

Crown of Crystal Flame by C.L. Wilson was an awesome wrap-up to the Tairen Soul series. I was a bit hesitant to start this book since the previous book, Queen of Song and Souls (Book 4 of the series), seemed to drag (I actually ended up skimming it). However, this final book was action packed! Danger surrounds Rain and Elly at every turn. I was a third of the way through the book, and I couldn't imagine what else Rain and Elly would have to confront. There were definitely several chapters that ended on cliff hangers - leaving you wondering if they were going to be able to escape the threat facing them and/or their people.


Rain and Elly eventually get their happy ever after ending, but I'm not sure if I liked the way the final showdown ended. It seemed a little too pat and fairy tale like for me. I know Elly - and Elly and Rain together - are powerful, but this still just seemed a bit much to me. I guess I imagined something more complex to resolve the threat after all Elly has gone through leading up to the final showdown. Although, now that I think it over, Elly sure does escape capture quite often via fantastical rescues. Then again, this is a fantasy book. So maybe I'm being a little too critical.

I'd definitely recommend reading books 1 through 3 (Lord of the Fading Lands; Lady of Light and Shadows; and, King of Sword and Sky) prior to reading this book. I don't think I really missed much skipping most of book 4 (Queen of Song and Souls).  Wilson seemed to do a decent job recapping events that were pertinent from book 4.

My take:

SOURCE: e-ARC courtesy of HarperCollins/Avon Books via NetGalley


Long ago, in the magical holocaust known as the Mage Wars, the immortal Fey and their allies fought to defeat the grasping evil of the Elden Mages and their dark-gifted supporters. During those wars, in a fit of grief-induced madness caused by the death of his mate, Fey shapeshifter Rain Tairen Soul nearly destroyed the world in a blaze of tairen fire.

Now, a thousand years later, the fierce Fey king must fight to save his race from the brink of extinction and once again stop the evil rising in the homeland of his enemies, the Eld. The key to his success lies in the mortal city of Celieria, where the Mage Wars began, and with a young woman whose soul sings to him in ways no woman’s ever has, whose presence reawakens the primal fury of the tairen within his soul, and whose vast, untapped power can either save or destroy him and his people.


Since her earliest memories, Ellysetta Baristani has feared magic, even as she has been inexorably drawn to all things Fey, especially the poetry and legends of Rain Tairen Soul. Now claimed as Rain’s truemate and no longer able to deny her own magic, Ellysetta is swept into the very center of a struggle filled with the magic and darkness she has always feared. The High Mage of Eld wants to capture her. The most murderous dahl’reisen who ever lived wants her dead. And her enemies will corrupt even the people she loves most in their quest to claim her magic for themselves.


Returning to the Fading Lands with his Celierian truemate, Rain discovers a dissension among the most powerful members of his own council. As the Eld plot their next deadly strike, Ellysetta struggles to master her powerful magic and discover how to save the tairen, while Rain confronts open challenge to his rule and prepares to lead the Fey army to war.


The first deadly battles of the new Mage Wars have been fought, and victory has been won at a terrible price. As the toll of an unfulfilled matebond and the torment of war begins tips Rain towards madness, Ellysetta knows if she cannot find a way to defeat the darkness growing inside her and complete the truemate bond, Rain will die and she will become the prophesied monster Vadim Maur uses to destroy the Fey and enslave the World. 


  1. I can't wait to pick up the first book in this series!!!

  2. Yes...I agree..great ending :) I'm interested to see what else she will write...

  3. @Pamela - It's a great fantasy series. Can't wait to hear what you think of it.

    @Mandi - Me too!