History That Never Was

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Review of Moth and Spark by Anne Leonard

Moth and Spark by Anne Leonard (Viking, 2014) is a fast-paced fantasy novel with intrigue, romance, and dragons. It’s packed with wonderful characters and a story that will make you not want to put the book down.

The novel features two point of view characters, with alternating chapters. Corin, the male protagonist, is a prince with an unusual connection to the dragons. Tam, the female protagonist, is a commoner with the powers of a Seer, which she had not realized prior to arriving in the capital on an ostensible search for a husband. Once they meet in the library, the book follows their burgeoning romance while their home country is plunged into war and a need for Corin to figure out his link to the dragons and what he must do. Tam uses her abilities to assist, and they both face sacrifice and success in turns.

The setting of Moth and Spark is a sort of high-medieval or early Renaissance fantasy setting, with magic-based technology. It gives the novel a different feel from a high fantasy setting that feels closer to D&D or Lord of the Rings, but still is decidedly pre-modern in many of the society’s trappings. I would recommend it to people who enjoy theĀ Song of Ice and Fire series but would prefer less murder and more romance in their reading. While there is still death and violence in this book, it is less in the forefront than the intrigue, romance, and dragons.

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