Amy, a forlorn fifteen year old girl from NYC, never thought that she would attend school on a magical mountain with wild animals as her classmates and that she would go to a prom on a flying carpet. Its love at first sight when Drake- a shape shifter rescues her from a pre-historic beast and befriends her. Little does she know that Drake’s father is the tyrannical leader who has always wanted Amy and her kind dead. In her struggle to challenge the supremacy in the magical world, she realizes her powers, confronts aspects about herself that she may not be comfortable with, makes lasting friends while excelling in her school - something which she had not been able to do in her human world. All hell breaks loose, as Drake goes missing and Voluspan mercenaries try to hunt Amy down. Amy and her friends use strategic warfare, pit adversaries among themselves and use every last drop of strength, skill and courage as they take on warriors far more ruthless and skilled than themselves. But Amy is in for a rude shock when she finally finds Drake.
Why write a book like ‘Voluspa – A Magical World’? Like countless other teenage girls, I had a difficult time during my pre-teen and early teen years. I had major body issues and even suffered with eating disorders. During these years, I often fantasized about escaping to an alternate universe where I could start life afresh or find acceptance. My imagination was further fuelled by the countless number of books I devoured growing up, especially since they were my only constant companions. Thus when the time came to put words down to paper, I found myself creating a fantasy world – a place so magical that it had the power to heal even the most troubled souls.
Talking about troubled souls, the main two protagonists of my story, Amy and Drake, definitely fit the bill. Amy has a hard childhood, feeling unwanted and unloved whereas Drake’s childhood is shadowed by impossibly high expectations imposed on him by his father. The two meet when Amy crosses over realms to land up in Voluspa and they connect from the very beginning. They find a kindred spirit in each other and like two halves of a whole, they complete each other. But their relationship is taboo as per the law in Voluspa. One of the questions that this book subtly puts forward is whether individual freedom is sacrosanct or should it take a backseat when it comes to greater good of the land and people. This story also puts a new spin on the age old battle between good and evil. Circumstances force both Amy and Drake to do certain things
which one could consider a touch shy of evil. But at no time does their love for each other diminish and whatever they do is born out of a need to protect or help the other.
One could say that this is a story of two star crossed lovers set against a magical backdrop of an enchanted land. However, the world of Voluspa in not a Utopic one; like most known civilizations it has its own problems. Despotic leaders, wars, arbitrate laws; all weave themselves to create a rich tapestry of life that forms the backdrop of this story. The story borrows from mythology to give it an authentic tone. It is multi layered and I believe would appeal to a broad spectrum of age.
At present I am working on the next book in the Voluspa series. This book finds a changed Drake. His ordeals with Lord Vali has changed him permanently and no matter how much he wishes, there is no going back for him. He is now faced with the challenge of carving out a new life for himself away from Voluspa, away from Amy. But Amy is not one to accept loosing Drake so easily; she is determined to save Drake no matter what the cost. Now that the secret of her birth is out, she also has to contend with the wrath of the council members. In the meantime Lord Vali continues with his quest to resurrect his demonic leader using Drake and the book.
To find out what happens to Amy and Drake and their forbidden love wait for the next book in
Voluspa – A Magical World.
To be honest when I received the request from Ray East to review Voluspa I almost turned it down. I thought that it would be to much of a middle grade read to appeal to my taste. I'm glad I didn't because once I got into it I was hooked. It took me a little while to get into the story, more from outside influences than the story itself so I put it down for a couple of days before I picked it back up.
The story follow Amy a fifteen year old girl from New York City, she lives with her alcoholic step father that neglects her and is very much an outcast among her peers. When her step father dies she goes to live with her grandmother in Georgia that she has had very little contact with throughout her life. While going through her mother's childhood room in an attempt to learn more about her mother who died when Amy was just a toddler she comes across a book called 'Legends of Voluspa', which she believes to be a work of fiction. After she starts reading the book she begins to have dreams that she is in the world of Voluspa. When she can't wake herself from her dream she soon realizes that Voluspa is a very real place and she has somehow transported herself there. Soon she meets Drake, a shape shifter, and find the friends and acceptance she has always longed for all while finding out more about herself and her family's connection to the magical world of Voluspa.
It's been awhile since I've read a straight fantasy book, so it was quite refreshing to read this. I loved the mythical creatures and magic that are in Voluspa and I want a pet Typhon. The authors do an amazing job of painting the picture of what the world of Voluspa is like it was very easy to get lost in the story.
I enjoyed watching the growth of Amy as a character throughout the story and how she goes from a shy outcast to a confident heroine. Drake was a great character, he is kind, loyal, confident, and a little bull-headed sometime but most guys are. Jacek is a bit of an enigma and I hope to find out more about him in the next. Amilio and Sonja are more of minor character but still serve their purpose and loyal friends and key members of their group.
The relationship between Amy and Drake is definitely interesting, there is a lot of chemistry there but not the instant love thing that I'm not a fan of more of an instant attraction and easy friendship. It was nice to watch how their relationship developed in the story.
Voluspa is a great fantasy read for anyone looking to escape into a magical world for a few hours and I can't wait for the sequel to be released.