cover image A River Enchanted

A River Enchanted

Rebecca Ross. Harper Voyager, $27.99 (464p) ISBN 978-0-06-305598-8

With this vividly imagined, Scottish-inspired mythic fantasy, Ross makes her adult fantasy debut (after the YA novel Dreams Lie Beneath) and launches the Elements of Cadence duology. Jack Tamerlaine departed Cadence, an island divided by an age-old feud between two clans, 10 years ago to train as a bard on the mainland. Now he is summoned back to the childhood home he hoped to leave behind. Young girls are going missing from the island, and Adaira Tamerlaine, future Laird of the East and Jack’s childhood enemy, needs Jack’s help to find them. The rescue mission forces Jack and Adaira to work together to appease the spirits of earth, fire, water and air—but this magic comes at a high cost, one Jack may be unable to pay. Ross puts a faith-based spin on the familiar elemental magic system and infuses her richly drawn world with dangerous spirits, while raising thoughtful questions about spirituality, morality, man’s relationship with nature, and the meaning of home. This will appeal to lovers of fantasy from Name of the Wind to the Earthsea series. Agent: Suzie Townsend, New Leaf Literary. (Feb.)