Published in 2010
By Leah Cypess
"No, Isabel thought, closing her eyes. She didn't want to be human. She didn't want to have feelings, and fears, and choices. She wanted to know what was right and act without hesitation." (p.223)
This novel is a story of lore - with a twist. The perspective is told by the legend herself.
Isabel is the current embodiment of The Shifter, a being that can shift into any animal. Unfortunately, this time around, Isabel cannot remember all of her capabilities nor her previous lives.
Despite her insecurities, she rises to her duty of protecting a young prince, Rokan, who unlike his father is determined to rule with his heart and not cold calculations. But his emotions hinder him from recognizing the plots that threaten his life and his true enemies, and he must rely on Isabel for her ancient knowledge.
While Isabel faces developing human emotions and the struggle to find her true Shifter self, she must also deal with finding the truth about the circumstances that forced her to flee previously. She must also discern whether Rokan is really meant to be king, and therefore whether it is her duty to remain loyal to him.
Will The Shifter regain her full powers, or will she choose to be more human? Is she allowed to love as The Shifter? And will she choose to defend Rokan with her life?
I really enjoyed this book. It has action, a sense of adventure, and a sweet love story. The plot definitely arouses the reader's curiosity. We are as confused as Isabel is when it comes to her previous life and her true identity.
Which brings me to the originality of this novel. I thought I had figured out the mystery, but at the climax realized I was wrong. Furthermore, even then there was still more surprises that the author revealed.
However, the author does not leave us hanging at the end. She wraps up the story nicely in still continuing the story after the action subsides.
In this way and throughout the novel, Cypess is adept at developing the characters so that we understand their fears and struggles.
I would recommend this novel without hesitation. It is is different in that the love story is not the focus and the world we enter is enthralled by one legend.
♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ = awesome book- a must read!
* Thank you to our friend L.K. for lending us this book!