Wednesday, April 22, 2015

[Blog Tour] Review & Giveaway: A Necklace of Souls (SoulNecklace Stories #1) by R.L. Stedman


A Necklace of Souls
Release Date: 12/19/14
339 pages
Summary from Goodreads:
‘A true dream is when the events I see in my sleep have, or will happen. It’s a talent that runs in my family. I was thirteen when I had my first true dream.’

Will’s Aunt says the Kingdom of the Rose is the most fortunate of lands. But Will hates the place – his uncle and aunt are horrible, and he misses his parents. Oh, how he misses them.

Dana wishes she wasn’t a princess. She’s always being told how to behave, what to wear. There’s a strangeness in the castle – why will no one talk about the Guardian, or the necklace that protects the land? And why does her father look at her with such sorrow? The collier’s cart seems the perfect escape. Only she didn’t realize she’d become so dirty, or so lost. Fortunately this boy, Will, has a sense of direction. And next to the forbidding stranger, N’tombe, he seems reassuringly normal.

Welcome to A Necklace of Souls: a story of love and loss, of shattered lives and desperate hopes. In the Kingdom of the Rose, bravery is not always measured by strength and magic is real, if only one has the courage to dream.

Shortlisted for the Sir Julius Vogel Award, A Necklace of Souls was awarded the Tessa Duder Award for Young Adult Fiction, Best First Book at the New Zealand Post Children and Young Adult Book Awards and is a Storylines Notable Book.

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I really enjoyed reading the journey of Dana and Will. The spacing of the story is slow and then there's the time skip.

Will's journey wasn't easy. In fact it was quite tragic. He used to live in a small village with his parents who were bakers and he seems to follow their footsteps but a plague came to their village and Will was sadly one of the few who survived. I already had an inkling how it would be with all the clues the author written. Luckily, he received an invitation from his aunt about living with them. The only thing is the kingdom where his aunt lives was supposed to be a legend and the only way to enter is one must have a token and such a ferryman will bring you to the entrance to the kingdom.

Then there's Dana who's the princess of that kingdom who dreams of things that supposedly happened. She has the same gift as her father at the same time there are secrets that are being kept from her which will change her life.

What I like about this was that the interaction between Dana and Will wasn't immediate. It took a few months before they met and another couple of months till they met once more due to certain events which I'm not going to spoil.

All I can say is that Dana and Will will journey together in order to stop the evil that's after the power in the kingdom. Luckily, they aren't alone. They will need all the help they can get especially after encountering the strength of their enemy's forces.

I felt sad for Will especially what he'd gone through but I liked how he's still the same and that he wasn't bitter but made the most of his situation. I really hate his aunt's family. I was happy when he was given better opportunities especially that led him to meeting Dana.

I'm not quite fangirling but I was elated every time Dana and Will have their moments especially when they both came to realize that their feelings for another grew. I loved the sense of humor in this book especially every time Dana and Will kiss, they are always being interrupted. Their romance was slow and very little actually but when they got together everything was worth the wait.

I liked how Dana isn't the typically spoiled princess and I loved her antics. She has an okay relationship with her family most especially her father. I felt sad for when that little secret was revealed to her and I hope there's a way around that. I really disliked her mother, she's kind of evil.

I'll definitely continue this series. I hope to see more Will and Dana's moments.

My name is Rachel Stedman. I’m a physiotherapist (physical therapist) by background, but now I work as a freelance contractor. I live in the wild and windy place of Dunedin, New Zealand, with my husband and two kids.

I write mostly for children and young adults. In 2012 I won the Tessa Duder Award for an unpublished YA work and my first novel, A Necklace of Souls, was published by HarperCollins in 2013 (available in the United Kingdom and on Book Depository from June 2015). This year, A Necklace of Souls was awarded Best First Book at the 2014 New Zealand Post Book Awards and won a Notable Book Award from Storylines. Inner Fire is my second novel.
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