Claire Greene's Reviews > Daughter of the Forest

Daughter of the Forest by Juliet Marillier
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's review
Mar 20, 2008

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Recommended to Claire by: Book store employee
Recommended for: Die Hard Fantasy Lovers

Well, I will begin by saying that I am not a huge fan of Fantasy normally. I loved Harry Potter, and I have enjoyed other Fantasy series here and there, but overall, very traditional type Fantasy is not by thing. This book was highly recommended by a few different people that read and loved a lot of other books that I also read and loved. So, with misgivings, I picked it up. And with the first book, I was surprisingly caught up - I enjoyed the story, the characters and felt that it wasn't predictable - either in plot line or character development. I liked the retelling of a very traditional fairy tale of the witch turns people into swans who only have one day to be human again. I liked the setting - being Irish myself, I enjoyed seeing so much about the Celts and their history - myth and truth - that was obviously very well researched. I thought that the main character was a touch long suffering. And maybe a little too steadfast in the face of so many hardships (not one real angry outburst?? Just a quivering chin and slow tears falling?? REALLY?) But overall, I was willing to go with it, especially feeling that the story was essentially a retelling of a fairy tale, which very specifically has exaggerated characters to better impart the moral or point of the story. So I was happy that I enjoyed the first book, knowing that there were others to follow AND that she was a prolific author, which meant I would have many new books and series to explore.
So then I began the second book. Which was still interesting, but starting to lose some of my interest. But still, overall enjoyable. I was beginning to feel that the main female characters were a little TOO perfect - suffering hardship and always being perfect, never truly stumbling or making mistakes due to normal human frustration, etc. I thought that it was more formulaic with the love story, and a departure from the concept of the first book - the reworking and humanizing an old fairy tale - but ok, I was still game and kept reading.
The third book again deals with descendants of the original characters. There is another romance and it is again with "the wrong guy". The obvious misunderstandings that lead to feelings of betrayal, the recluse dad, the whole girl who is really good inside but is angry and misunderstood and therefore easily used by the wicked witch. It just was really becoming less and less interesting to me.
Well, I kept reading. And it just goes on and on. By the end of the series, you are dealing with the grandchildren of the original characters, a story that has become completely obvious (I saw the ending coming at the beginning of the last book, making the entire last book a snore fest!), and just overall frustrating for me to read. I felt like I was doing homework. Curse my need to know the ending to everything! I have never stopped reading a book. I ALWAYS have to finish it because I just won't stop thinking about it and wondering if it got better or at the very least I want to know the full story so I can trash it more effectively. Given that, I have often wanted the time wasted reading the crappy book back and that is pretty much how I ultimately felt about these books. And while the first few were pretty good, you have to slog through the other terrible ones to get any conclusion or resolution. So unless you are the most die hard fantasy fan, that loves anything mages or is a proud D & D master (nothing wrong with that - just stating that it has that feel to the series), I would just avoid them all together.
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Comments (showing 1-2 of 2) (2 new)

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Jessica My hat's off to you for being able to get through the series. Very brave of you, indeed. :)

Emma Deplores Goodreads Censorship The latest books are more for diehard romance fans than D&D'ers, methinks.... ;)

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