Here’s a review for Fate’s Hand (Book 1 of the Celtic Prophecy) by Melissa Macfie.
I was really excited to read this book based on my interest in Celtic mythology and its influence on my own work in progress. So I jumped at the chance to read it. There are things I love about it and other things not so much. There are six questions to which I pay attention when I review.
1. How quickly do I get into the story?
2. Can I relate to a character?
3. Can I picture the fantasy realm?
4. Is the use of sexual activity and cussing used judiciously (if at all)?
5. Is it well written and easy to read?
6. Do I hope for a sequel because I want more?
Let me be fair: I generally read YA fantasy and am not big into gore, and in the beginning, there is definitely descriptive gore, albeit in small amounts. This made me set down the book initially, although I am glad I went back to it, generally speaking. After I read past the beginning, there were some really interesting characters. I related to the protagonist and her struggle to accept her identity. One of the other characters speaks with a strong Scottish accent, and while it took reading aloud initially to understand it, his accent became part of the book’s charm. The author wove together some wonderful elements of Scottish and Irish mythology. It is clear that she had done a lot of research, and this is always a plus for me. One of the negatives, though, is that part of the storyline contained detailed sexual scenes which, although useful for plot advancement to a point, could have been written less graphically. They really took away from the story for me. I would say the same is true of some of the cussing. There is a single word in the English language that is offensive to me regardless of context and it is used in this novel. That said, the author’s command of the English language is superb, and I was never once distracted by grammar issues. It was very readable. Finally, I am torn about reading the next book in the series. I don’t really want to read erotica, even in small snippets, but I am intrigued by the modern twist on the mythology and I would like to know what happens to the protagonist. For this mixed review, I give it a 3 out of 5. I suspect if you love the Celtic lore, and you don’t mind erotica, cussing or gore, you will enjoy it as a 5 out of 5.