Shazza Maddog's Reviews > Foiled

Foiled by Jane Yolen
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's review
Oct 26, 2011

really liked it
Read in October, 2011

First off: Jane Yolen has written a manga. :D Be still my heart.

Aliera Carstairs is your typical teenage heroine - she doesn't fit in at school, her best friend is her cousin, who is homebound due to illness, and she's a fencer, preferring a foil to a rapier or an epee. The story is told from her point of view, and starts when Aliera's mother buys her a practice foil, one with a fake ruby glued to the hilt.

Aliera is a confused young woman. She wants to fit in, but isn't one of the brains, or one of the jocks. She takes fencing lessons away from the school. When Avery, one of the cuter boys in school, suddenly asks her out on a Saturday afternoon, Aliera accepts, even though it will keep her from seeing her cousin and playing RPGs with her, like they do every Saturday.

Avery and Aliera agree to meet at Grand Central Station, though Aliera is starting to think this is a bad idea - she had fencing class first, and did horribly, then forgot shampoo to clean up properly afterward. Her 'fresh' clothes smelled of the inside of her gym bag, and she's tired and damp and a little stinky when she runs into Grand Central.

While waiting for Avery, who's late for their meeting, Aliera gets attacked by a bird. The bird keeps swooping down at her, and to protect herself, she pulls on her fencing mask - only to see something absolutely different once she does - a whole new world, far more vibrant than her own, with dragons and fairies and people out of her world.

The art style is very easy, and Aliera isn't shown to be a gorgeous girl, though very capable. The proportions of the characters suits their ages, and there isn't anything particularly graphic, though it could be considered both a kid's horror and a kid's fantasy story. The characters are very engaging. I enjoyed this story rather a lot, however, the ending felt like it was a set-up for additional stories. I would be very interested in reading more in this universe.
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