Synopsis (from Amazon):
Laila Pennedy awaits death by hanging. For the Rendow Clan rules the Woodlands Region, aiming to slaughter the Faithful. And she deserves to die. But Lars Landre, the man destined to lead the Faithful out of persecution, has other plans hidden behind his rare and mysterious blue eyes. Rescue.
Following the daring escape, Laila seeks the path of a warrior and vows revenge against the Rendow Clan. She embarks on a dangerous journey with Lars, one in which they endeavor to reach the promised safety of a magical village, to train for battle, and to ultimately assure freedom for those with faith in the Maker.
Clashes of weapons and souls. Brutal loss of lives. Unrequited love. How in all the Woodlands will Laila survive?
About Angie Brashear (also from Amazon):
When Angie Brashear isn’t working or taking care of her family, she writes. Usually at night after her kids fall asleep. She’s a fan of speculative fiction and an avid runner, both of which perplex her nonfiction-reading, football-loving husband. Saved in her early twenties, Angie is grateful for the Lord’s presence in all aspects of her life. She is originally from Rockland, Maine and currently resides in Cameron, Texas with her husband and three children.
I give Of the Persecuted by Angie Brashear 3 out of 5 stars.
First of all, Brashear is to be commended for presenting a Christian worldview in a fantasy world. It’s hard to do, and while I didn’t agree with every conclusion at which the characters arrived, I thought it was well-handled throughout the story.
That being said, Of the Persecuted was not what I expected.
From the synopsis, I really expected a tight, action-packed plot. While the plot picked up considerably towards the end of the book, I wanted to see more conflict and action throughout. I also wanted to understand and explore Laila’s bent on revenge, but it wasn’t terribly developed. The plot focused instead on other things.
Of the Persecuted is classified as young adult fantasy-romance, but I felt the romance element outweighed the fantasy aspect and believed some of the content was mature enough for an older audience. I enjoy a story with elements of romance (who doesn’t?), but I came away from reading a few times feeling that the plot focused too much on a build up to romance, and not enough on the struggle between the Rendow Clan and the Faithful, or even Laila’s feelings of revenge.
I enjoyed the cast of characters, from the good to the downright nasty. I’ve got to say, my favorites were Moyna (you’ll know why if you read the book) and Jolene (a Faithful who knows her desires and commits them to the Maker: “He’s the perfect match for me and I plan to implore the Maker for our union as long as it takes.”) There were a couple of great twists at the end too.
Aside from the story not being what I thought it would be, or that the romance element was not my cup of tea, I can sincerely recommend Of the Persecuted to fans of the Christian Romance genre. So if romance IS your cup of tea (or coffee, or cocoa, or whatever your cup of tea actually is), hop along over to Amazon and buy it! (I have on good authority the Kindle version is FREE for the next four days!)