Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Rider (Spirals of Destiny #1)” as Want to Read:
Rider (Spirals of Destiny #1)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Rider (Spirals of Destiny #1)

3.83  ·  Rating details ·  304 Ratings  ·  45 Reviews
Forget everything you thought you knew about unicorns and maidens...

A unicorn is not supposed to survive the death of its rider, but Majherri did. Now he is a pariah, mistrusted by the Greater Herd. To reclaim his lost honor and status, he will entrust the remnants of his life to a new human female while unraveling the mystery of his continued existence.

Kayleigh Reese is
Paperback, 250 pages
Published June 10th 2010 by Gryphonwood Press (first published May 6th 2010)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
Rating details
Sort: Default
Nov 05, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Lovers of: Unicorns, horses, magic, adventure.
Recommended to Kelsi by: Goodreads

Whywhywhywhywhy?! Why did this wonderful book have to end? Now I have to wait for the second one. >.<


Rider is what you'd call an unknown gem. Not many people know about this book. The only way I found out about it was through Goodreads Recommendations. So, guys, check those recommendations. You never know what you'll find.

When I saw this book, I was a little suspicious. Looking at the cover through the computer mad
Mar 08, 2012 rated it liked it
Recommended to Melissa by: Lacey
Decent book, though it could use a good read-out-loud session to catch the multiple missed words, spelling. and grammar errors. I will admit that the author wrote a great story and I really liked Reese. The personalities of the unicorns were not as I expected, but I liked that because it makes them more "real" and less mythical. I did find their mode of communication confusing though. It seemed like sometimes their conversations were in quotes, sometimes italicized with or without quotes, and ot ...more
Aug 03, 2013 rated it really liked it
Originally I was going to rate this with three stars, mostly due to the number of typos that kept popping up. Not so many that it detracted from the story, but enough to be a bit of distraction for a grammar-and-spelling watcher like me to notice.

Also, the middle part of the story seemed a bit slow. Not bad - it was all interesting and well-written, with good character development throughout. The middle third of the book, though, just felt like a little bit too much of the main character's day-t
Mar 02, 2012 rated it really liked it
Spirals of Destiny, Book One: Rider, by Jim Bernheimer is the first book in the Rider series. Spirals of Destiny is a Sci-Fi Fantasy tale told from the perspective of teenager, Kayleigh Reese and Majherri, a unicorn.

In Spirals of Destiny, it is the dream of young girls to someday become battle maidens. Battle maidens are warriors who are selected based on a magical bond which they develop with a unicorn. Few girls manage such a bond; therefore, any one selected is in elite company. Kayleigh didn
Brian Foster
Jan 08, 2013 rated it liked it
In Rider: Spirals of Destiny Book 1, Mr. Bernheimer tells the story of the bond between a unicorn, Majherri, who shouldn’t have survived the loss of his rider, and Kayleigh Reese, an outcast seeking a place to belong. Disclaimer: I wouldn’t normally purchase a novel about a unicorn, but I so loved Confessions of a D-List Supervillain that I was desperate to read something else by this author.

Why to buy this book: The writer clearly has talent. He was able to draw me into the story despite the su
C.T. Phipps
Sep 21, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy
It's a rare high fantasy which attracts my attention. While I enjoy just about anything set in Medieval lands where sorcery and dragons are commonplace, I tend to favor the grim and grittier side of the spectrum. Spirals of Destiny, with its fair-maiden next to a unicorn in a pastoral paradise, didn't exactly inspire me to believe this would that kind of story. However, it's by Jim Bernheimer, a man who I have come to trust as the writer of such gems as Confessions of a D-List Supervillain and ...more
May 14, 2011 rated it really liked it
I confess: I am a unicorn girl. I have all kinds of figurines and my room growing up had all kinds of posters and memorabilia, kind of like the girl from Dodgeball, although I didn't have the life size unicorn in the living room. But I digress.

Anyone, my history as a fan of the ethereal yet imaginary creatures made accepting Rider: Spirals of Destiny for review a logical choice. I was not disappointed- this is a quick yet vivid fantasy story that will appeal to fans of adventure, mystery, and ma
Richard Jackson
Nov 04, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
As much as it pains me to say this, my favorite character from Rider (Spirals of Destiny) is the unicorn, Majherri. My friends will probably never let me live this down but I want to explain myself before they kick down my door and drag me off for some re-education over shots of tequila.

Majherri is not like the unicorns you know from other fantasy tales. His personality, like his appearance, sets him apart from the herd. He and this book are a different breed.

Majherri and all of the characters a
Feb 24, 2012 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this book! I like things that mix it up and take old mythological characters and turn them into something more. I liked that they were warriors!! Not something you usually see unicorns doing. I ride and love horses and know how much they like to work and do things with their partners. I can only imagine what having a partner that is that intelligent that you can communicate with that effectively would be like. The unicorns remind me a little of Mercedes Lackey's horses. There is ...more
Mar 15, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Marvellous read, sincerely hope there will be a sequel.
I love unicorns and it was great to see them portrayed with individual characters. Could not put this book down, definitely one of my favourites
May 24, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This book was awesome!!!!!!!!!!!!! The unicorn is my favorite; he's so sarcastic and rebellious, you can't help but love him!
Ax Merrill
Sep 20, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I really liked this book! I LOVE magical Creature ect so this was a perfect book for me! It is a cliff Hanger sao if you plan to read it I would suggest that you get a hold of the second book first
Melissa Orsbun
Nov 12, 2017 rated it liked it
I had high hopes for it and really struggled to get into the book. think I will reread it and see if my opinion has changed.
Dec 29, 2010 rated it really liked it
This is the first book in Bernheimer's new series Spirals of Destiny. Previously he has written Dead Eye: Pennies for the Ferryman and a collection of short stories called Horror, Humor, and Heroes. I really enjoyed both of these books and looked forward to reading this one. I got a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review. I am excited to say I really enjoyed this book; it is a creative take on unicorns and female warriors. Write now the Spirals of Destiny series is pl ...more
Feb 10, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: YA Fantasy fans who like a heroine who grows into being strong
Story 5/5 stars - has an interesting plot & a storyline that moves along at a good pace & doesn't bog down.
I like the way the setting is presented through the eyes of the main character as she is experiencing it. You learn about the world setting as she learns of it, as opposed to the world being explained in a guidebook-style.
There was one overused plot element I did not care for : (view spoiler)
Shayla Gibson
Jan 13, 2016 rated it liked it
This is not the first of Bernheimer's books that I've read, so I picked it up expecting something a little different than it turned out to be. This is slightly older than his D-List Supervillain books, but it seems like much earlier writing. There are several times when the phrasing is clumsy or repetitive, and overall this is not nearly as clever as D-List Supervillain series. I did like the story; the basic concept was strong and I like the idea of organizing unicorns and arranging exposure to ...more
Sep 05, 2011 rated it it was amazing
My thoughts: Incredible! This is a story like no other I have read. Truly inspiring in the telling. Jim Bernheimer has created a world in which the most feared and admired warriors are women who ride unicorns, they are called Battle Maidens. These women are chosen by the unicorns and are trained on an enchanted island to become said warriors. The characters that he has created to live in his world are amazing. They are filled with courage and a sense of purpose. He has developed in them all the ...more
Dec 11, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy, audio
Synopsis: "Forget everything you thought you knew about unicorns and maidens...

A unicorn is not supposed to survive the death of its rider, but Majherri did. Now he is a pariah, mistrusted by the Greater Herd. To reclaim his lost honor and status, he will entrust the remnants of his life to a new human female while unraveling the mystery of his continued existence.

Kayleigh Reese is not Battle Maiden material. She's three years older than any other recruit and has enjoyed a peaceful, nomadic li
Aug 03, 2010 rated it liked it
In a Sentence: Spirals of Destiny is a well-told fantasy that will appeal to both Middle Grade and Young Adult readers.

My Thoughts

Spirals of Destiny was a book that reminded me that we can't always completely rely on our first impressions. To be totally honest, I wasn't really expecting to like Spirals of Destiny. I'd never heard of the book, author, OR publishing company, and I wasn't a huge fan of the cover. In the past, that hasn't been a good sign. However, I'm happy to say that Spirals of
Feb 20, 2011 rated it really liked it
The High-King's elite fighting force is the unicorn cavalry and the battle maidens that ride them. Majherri is the only unicorn to have ever survived the death of his rider. Kayleigh is the sixteen year-old girl he meets when forced out on a recruiting drive to find qualified riders for the unbound unicorns. Her touch generates the Bondspark, indicating she is to be his rider, making it a problem because she's three years older than the others who will begin their training. Her new found magic i ...more
Feb 27, 2011 rated it really liked it
I quite enjoyed this book. It's an entertaining read.

Now, in some ways it's a pretty typical "coming of age" sort of fantasy. Girl is "discovered"; receives training while being misunderstood/mistreated; rises to challenges; and becomes greater than expected.

What makes the story somewhat new/different is the presence of unicorns and how they magically interact with their riders. Again, while there other unicorn stories containing bonds between riders and unicorns; the author still makes the re
Aug 28, 2015 rated it liked it
Entertaining story, but good Lord did it need some editing work done. It was so very distracting that it detracted from the over all effect. I could see it putting some people off completely and that would be a shame as I feel the story is strong and very enjoyable.

I liked both Kayleigh and Majheeri from the beginning. The world building was interesting and I liked the way that the bonds between unicorn and rider worked. The pacing was nice and the action towards the end was handled well.

Those e
Jan 03, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy, audiobook
The main problem I had with this book is that the narration wasn't the best, especially that there's one voice that she did that was high-pitched and annoyed me to no end. Aside from that, it's a decent book, although the ending was very abrupt.

This is about a fantasy world where teenage girls bond with unicorns to become warriors who can wield magic (although only when touching the unicorn or a weapon they've stored some magic in). The unicorns come across as intelligent war horses who can com
Aug 26, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: own, paranormal, ya, fiction
I was asked by the author if I would be interested in reading and reviewing his book on my blog. Again, I apologize for taking so long getting this review up...Real Life has been really crazy. The synopsis really drew me in...this is not usually the type of book I would be interested in. I'm glad to say that I proved myself wrong by throughly enjoying a book about unicorns and maidens!

What I really liked about this book was that the unicorns actually played an very large part in the storyline...
Erin Penn
Sep 21, 2013 rated it liked it
I am falling in love with the broad range of genres Jim Bernheimer writes. His entry to the Young Adult Fantasy genre has all the fast action and unique world-building I expect, with the adult snarkiness left at the door. The story is a little more simplistic than his other stories, but appropriate for Young Adult.

Loved the elemental magic system and I can't want to see how a sorcerer's training differs from the limited magic done by the Warrior Maidens who ride unicorns.

Some editing needs to be
Lauren Mcvey
May 18, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: books-1-12
Rider is a story unlike any other. It is a story about unicorns but not regular unicorns. In this book a unicorn is not supposed to survive the death of their rider. One unicorn by the name of Majherri did though. His survival changed many things. For one he was looked at differently by not just other unicorns but by humans as well. Majherri later bonds to another human named Kayleigh. Kayleigh was not like other recuits(what young human girls are called when bonded to a unicorn). She was three ...more
Jessica Billings
May 05, 2011 rated it really liked it
My boyfriend lent me this ebook with the promise that it was something amazing, and I wasn't let down. It's been a long time since I read a book with unicorns in it, but this isn't one of those overly cheery, cutesy unicorn books that I read as a young teen. It has its serious, sad moments and moments of delight, but mostly it's just an exciting adventure that had me turning the (digital) pages for hours. Kayleigh and her bonded unicorn, Majherri, are both loners in an academy training them to b ...more
Sep 21, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ya, kindle, audible, mine
I really wanted to like this story. Powerful women, possible battles, unicorns, magic - what's not to like? Despite the promise of Mr. Bernheimer's Supervillain stories, there's a pretty good portion to feel let down by. The writing is wooden, flat, and awkward and I'm not 100% sure that impression can be blamed on audible's narrator. Additionally, there are some rather lackluster imagery, horribly stilted conversations, and more moments than i would like where an unidentified "her" momentarily ...more
Feb 16, 2011 rated it really liked it
Engaging from the start...

This book grabbed me from the first page! I was intrigued by the story being from the view points of both a unicorn and a human girl. It's unlike any other fantasy book I've ever read. Kayleigh was an empowering heroine who surmounted endlesss obstacles, yet remained relateable. The structure of The Academy that trains the battle maidens and their mounts was complex but not hard to follow. It was easy to get caught up in the emotions of, not just Kayleigh, but all the c
Terry Ervin II
Jul 02, 2010 rated it really liked it
A really good book. Creative, fast-paced and a good storyline.

What I didn't like is that the author used sometimes first, sometimes last names. Sometimes the two names together. And sometimes the ranks of the indivdiuals, which I found difficult to separate.

I understand one character may think/name or call a character differently than another, but a character thinking of a more formal last name, and then calling them in dialogue by first name? It just didn't work for me.

What I liked was the way
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Adversary (Ganzfield, #2)
  • Fist of the Furor (Scribes of Medeisia, #3)
  • The Society of Imaginary Friends
  • Star Wars: The National Public Radio Dramatization
  • Intuition (Bennett Sisters, #1)
  • Truly Deadly
  • Ancient Whispers
  • Play Dead
  • Arson (Arson, #1)
  • Soul Bonds (Circles of Light)
  • Pale Wolf (Bad Wolf Chronicles, #2)
  • Way Walkers: Tangled Paths (The Tazu Saga, #1)
  • The Servants Of The Storm (The Pillars of Reality #5)
  • The Prophecy (The Spirit Keeper, #2)
  • Fledge
  • Redemption (Alchemy, #4)
  • The Long Way (Long Way #1)
  • Sweet Dreams, Miss England
Jim lives in Chesapeake, Virginia with his wife Kim, and daughters Laura and Marissa. By day, he works as a Systems Administrator on a government contract and runs his own side Information Technology consulting firm, EJB Networking, which can be found at

Blessed (or cursed depending on your point of view) with an overactive imagination, Jim has long been a fan of Science Ficti
More about Jim Bernheimer...

Other Books in the Series

Spirals of Destiny (2 books)
  • Sorceress (Spirals of Destiny #2)