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Wondrous Strange (Wondrous Strange #1)

3.71 of 5 stars 3.71  ·  rating details  ·  17,501 ratings  ·  1,357 reviews
Since the dawn of time, the Faerie have taken. . . .

For seventeen-year-old actress Kelley Winslow, faeries are just something from childhood stories. Then she meets Sonny Flannery, whose steel-gray eyes mask an equally steely determination to protect her.

Sonny guards the Samhain Gate, which connects the mortal realm with the Faerie's enchanted, dangerous Otherworld. Usuall
Hardcover, 328 pages
Published December 23rd 2008 by HarperTeen
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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I have two comments to make on this book:

1. There is a character named Tyffanwy. No, my typing has not, in fact, developed a lisp, it is the truth.

2. During a scene in which a full-grown man is sitting on a little wooden painted pony on a carousel, the following description appears: "Kelley stared at Sonny, who sat easily on his mount, like a knight in shining armor on the back of his charger" (page 181).

And then I threw up, and that was the end of that.
I think I’ve wrote and then rewrote this review about a hundred times now! And I know it’s going to come across one way, and that’s just how it’s going to have to be, because I simply cannot write it any other way. So here is goes... fangirly-ness and all. I hope you last through it.

I loved it, I LOVED it. I love it so much I want to marry it. If you are a fan of faerie books, you’ll want to read this one. If you’ve tried faerie books before, but didn’t like them, you’ll want to read this. If yo
Marcy Jo
Wondrous Strange is one of those gems that I stumbled across completely by accident. I was in the book store looking to grab the second book in the BIFN series and of course I had to spend some time browsing while I was there. The cover of this book (gorgeous yes?) caught my attention, as did the title. Both of them put me in mind of "Wicked Lovely."

It was too much to resist. Without even reading the inside flap, I grabbed the book and headed to the register. This was a fortuitous happening.

Jennifer Wardrip
Reviewed by The Story Siren for

I loved it, I LOVED it. I love it so much I want to marry it. If you are a fan of faerie books, you'll want to read this one. If you've tried faerie books before, but didn't like them, you'll want to read this. If you aren't a fan of faerie books, you'll still want to read it. It's that good.

Incredible characters, incredible writing, incredible plot. It was really just so fantastic, it's hard to find the words to describe it. I never in a million
Alethea A
Jan 02, 2009 Alethea A rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: faerie-lovers, romantics, and wannabe princesses everywhere
Recommended to Alethea by: the book cover faerie!
Always choose a book by its cover... ahem.

First, a disclaimer! I liked this book. Despite what I am about to say next.

Definitely better written and far less angsty than Wicked Lovely, somewhat lacking in the descriptive area (esp. in comparison to the Marillier I just read--Wildwood Dancing) but the story ties up nicely and the characters are amusing. It was more humorous than I expected, which was good. It was less dramatic than I expected, which was not so good. (I know, ambiguous, huh? I exp
I see that most people seem to have really liked this book, but it really rubbed me the wrong way. It felt very flat and predictable. I would have liked to have had a sense that there was real danger at hand, but the writing lacked the necessary tension to pull off the New York City apocalypse scenario. (See: The City's End Two Centuries of Fantasies, Fears, and Premonitions of New York's Destruction) I generally really enjoy books like this, but it just didn't draw me in. I love the cover art, ...more
Amelia, the pragmatic idealist
Wondrous Strange to me offered a very clever, very interesting amount of mythology and folklore to explain the faerie world. This is particularly interesting because the entire story takes place in New York City - the "Otherworld," as it is known, is only referenced.
There's something in particular that I found really neat: So often in faerie fiction, you hear the same things over and over: Seelie/Unseelie, Winter & Summer Courts. Well, those concepts are all here, but Livingston brings more
Shannon (Giraffe Days)
At seventeen, Kelley Winslow has finished school and moved to New York to pursue a career on the stage. Being promoted to understudy for Titania in A Midsummer Night's Dream is a dream come true; when the actress playing Titania has to pull out and Kelley is given the role, it's so much, so suddenly, she's terrified and messes up all her lines. She finds a quiet spot in Central Park to practice, and it's there that she meets Sonny Flannery.

Sonny is a stolen child in Auberon's Fae realm, now serv
*Slight spoilers*

I write this review as I stare at my Pretty Pretty Princess board game.


Because this book makes me wish I was a ginger fairy princess myself, so that I could take Kelley's place and think rationally rather than try to save a half-ton horse, especially when it's a kelpie and trying to kill me so it can eat me. Or try to prevent hypothermia by taking the hottest shower ever. THAT'LL help me...

I got to page 80 something, and I just couldn't kid myself, I was bored out of my fuck
Kimberly Derting
I got this one for Christmas...YAY!!!
Anne Osterlund
Kelley is an actress. Well, actually more of an understudy/glorified stagehand, but when the person playing the faerie queen breaks an ankle it’s . . . show time! Or more accurately time for Kelley to forget half her lines and stomp off to Central Park for some serious rehearsal AKA self-reproachment.

Which results in . . .
A. Kelley receiving a rose from “the mysterious good-looking guy” (whose real name is Sonny, and who is actually a changeling human in charge of guarding the gate to faerie and
Erica (daydreamer)
Wow. This book was really good. Lesley did an incredible job at creating a magical fay story based on a Midsummer Night’s Dream. It was fantastic. The writing was beautifully done- it pulled me in from the beginning. I had a hard time putting the book down.

The characters were amazing. Kelley was perfect. I loved that she would not believe Sonny about what he was trying to tell her. She would have none of it, convinced that Sonny was stalking her, which any woman in her right mind would think abo
Wondrous Strange was a magical mix of fun and adventure. With every faerie story I’ve read, it’s either been strictly intense or dolled up, but I love that Lesley Livingston found a happy medium.

Kelley is probably one of my favorite literary characters of all time. She’s snarky, sarcastic and strong, and she doesn’t let the sudden intrusion of powerful faeries into her life get her down. Her stubborn but highly entertaining attitude stayed in check throughout the entire novel, and I loved every
M. Kay
Hey! Hey there! What a wondrously strange book! And I do mean that in a good way! I have never read A Midsummer's Night Dream, as I am not a big reader of the classics. However, the allusions in Wondrous Strange to Shakespeare's play makes me want to pick up a copy and see what I've been missing. Meaning Livingston did a great job making her characters and world come to life.

Of course by now I've read several books about the Fair Folk, but this one for me, stands out among the rest. That may hav
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jan 30, 2009 Alexandria rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone who likes fairytales, romance, and the paranormal
Recommended to Alexandria by: I stumbled across it in Barnes N Noble
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mike (the Paladin)
The rating is a gift, I know it's a book certain people will really enjoy. I didn't finish it. I didn't care for the way it was written, the tone nor the way the story was laid out. I suppose it might be that I'm just too old, too male, and too well read.

Please enjoy this if it's your cup of tea...or fairy wine. It's not mine. I have a long to be read list and I really wasn't enjoying this, so please my "friends" who have enjoyed this series, don't hold it against me...I just didn't care for it
this book was hilarious but in a bad way. intrigued me because it was a modern take on shakespeare's a midsummer night's dream but it was so poorly written and executed that it had me laughing at it's sheer stupidity. ashamed to say i finished it. dialogue could've been written by a 12 year old.
It has taken me awhile to get around to starting the Wondrous Strange series and thanks to my friend Michele, (Hey, Michele ;)), I was shoved in the right direction.

Wondrous Strange is the second Faery novel I've read that is based on the characters from William Shakespears "A Midsummer Nights Dream." The Iron Fey series was the first and I was convinced that nothing could compete with it... but I was wrong.

Kelley is a 17-year-old girl living in the city and trying to get a jump-start on her a
Wondrous Strange is captivating, beautifully written, and just a great book!I love Fairy books:D For me, this is one of my favorite books!!

Loved Livingston's writing, I was completely captivated and starstruck by the story and characters*Sonny*The characters come to life, they had that umph! .Kelley is an actress. She is an awesome female protagonist. I was instantly drawn to her character. She’s honest, she imperfect, and she's just real/ i could definitely relate to her.Now...Sonny..hmm..where
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Reading Sarah
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
The UHQ Nasanta
It had such promise, and it disappointed.

The premise intrigued, but the writing was flat and immature. The characters were two dimensional, not well developed, and did not grow. Questions were left unanswered, certain plot developments were glossed over, and there was a serious lack of character introspection, which would have given the book more depth.

The romance was poorly written. It seemed as if one moment they are somewhat friendly strangers, and the next in love. It also suffered from a
Being a Shakespeare lover would help with this book. That's not really me. I mean, I like Midsummer Night's Dream, but actors, especially theater people who do Shakespeare are annoying as hell. I was born and raised in L.A., every other person I knew in my twenties was an actor. Most of them are fine, unless they are in character, but this brand, the Renaissance festival folks...ugh!

My next gripe is the love interest guy's first name is Sonny. Really? My dog's name is Sunny - a big yellow lab. I
E.J. Stevens
I have been reading many modern day paranormal fantasy books lately involving faeries and changelings and was pleasantly surprised that this book didn't disappoint. Kelley is a likable main character but I must confess to being much more drawn to the supporting characters of this book. Sonny, the solemn Janus with a past, Tyff, Kelley's roommate, Lucky (you'll just have to read WS to learn about Lucky!), and the hodgepodge of eccentric characters in Kelley's theater troupe make this an enjoyable ...more
I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. Kelly was brave and spunky, but not so much so that she lost her femininity. It was romantic without being over the top and it had an element of innocence to it that I loved. There was also humor in there that was a nice surprise. As soon as she found the horse in her bathroom I was hooked. I also loved how A Midsummer Nights Dream was woven into the plot.
4.5 Stars

Some books will surprise you

Wondrous Strange is one of those books.

I found this book in the library and didn't think much of it as I checked it out. I read the first couple of pages, and quickly placed it at the bottom of my to-read pile. The whole faerie thing is great and all but extremely overdone. It took me at least a month and a half to finally get to this book. I remember reading a few chapters into it and getting totally hooked.

I fell in love with the characters immediately. K
I've been ridiculously excited to read this book. I've heard a lot of wonderful reviews about it, and I was super-psyched to walk into my library last week and see a copy of it sitting on the Teen shelf!

Lori @ Pure Imagination said in her review of Wondrous Strange that "With this book, I got everything I wanted Wicked Lovely to be and wasn't." I think this best sums up how I felt about the book. I've read quite a few YA books centered on faerie lore, (including Melissa Marr's Wicked Lovely seri
Kelley Anne
I just finished reading Wondrous Strange. It was pretty good. I'd probably give it 3 - 3 1/2 stars. I had to read this book when I saw that the main character's name was Kelley, and she even spelled it the same as me! I know that may seem funny to some, but when you have a rather common name like Kelley, but never see it spelled the same way that you do, it's fun when you can find it!

The main character in this story is an actress in New York City. One day while walking through Central Park, she
Similar Books: The Iron King by Julie Kagawa, The Hunter's Moon by O.R. Melling, Wicked Lovely by Melissa Marr

I never would have picked up this book if I hadn't read Starling by Lesley Livingston earlier this year. I was attracted to the Norse mythology in that book, but I ended up totally falling for Livingston's ability to build such an intricate world. Then I found out that one of the main characters in that book, Fennrys, actually started in this series - and I knew I had to get my hands on
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Other Books in the Series

Wondrous Strange (3 books)
  • Darklight (Wondrous Strange, #2)
  • Tempestuous (Wondrous Strange, #3)
Darklight (Wondrous Strange, #2) Tempestuous (Wondrous Strange, #3) Starling (Starling, #1) Once Every Never (Never, #1) Descendant (Starling, #2)

Share This Book

“Kelley. Your name is Kelley, isn't it?" He didn't wait for her confirmation. "Yes. Well. Tell me...that bit just now...was that from Dante's Inferno?"," Kelley stammered. Her face felt hot.
I'm in for it.
Are you sure?" he continued. "Because it most certainly wasn't from this play. And it bloody well sounded like hell.”
“Believe me, Kelley. If I’m not…it’s because I’m already dead.” He stroked her hair, and she could feel his breath warm on her forehead, like a kiss. “Because anyone that would seek to hurt you would have to kill me first.” 51 likes
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