3/14/11 — RieView: Of Blood and Honey — Stina Leicht — 5 Stars

Of Blood and Honey isn’t one of those happy-go-lucky stories where everything is roses and the hero wins everything he ever dreamed of. It is one of those books that pulls you forward from chapter to chapter until you reach the end.

Opening with sixteen-year-old Liam’s arrest for being on the wrong corner at the wrong time, it follows the young Irishman through his life in “The Troubles” of the 1970’s.

Powerful, poignant, and exceedingly well-researched, this urban fantasy weaves the world of the fey into the conflicted streets of Ireland without a sign of straining credulity. The characters are drawn with a fine-tipped brush — no one is perfect, but most have at least one redeeming virtue. All are trying to survive the best they can given the world around them.

The sublimated war between the Fallen Angels and the Fey mirrors the conflict between the British and the IRA without forcing its way to the foreground and disrupting the believability. In fact, I think this is one of the best examples I’ve seen yet of fantasy blending with reality without making me — as a reader — stop and resolve the two. I believed in her fey without question.

This is a powerful book. It is not for the squeamish who want their fey flighty and friendly. It will make you think; it may make you cry; it will not leave you unaffected.

I’ve given a lot of 5 Star reviews lately, but then I seldom bother to read anything I don’t really like. I really liked this. The writing is sheer poetry, despite its grim theme.