Google+ Reading Teen: Brightly Woven by Alexandra Bracken Review: MUST READ!!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Brightly Woven by Alexandra Bracken Review: MUST READ!!

*I'm making this picture extra-large because that's how much I liked this book!  :)

I just can't describe to you how much I loved Brightly Woven!  When I finished reading it, I closed it and just smiled and sighed.  That's when you know you've just read a phenomenal book.  

Debut author, Alexandra Bracken, is an amazing writer, who, according to her Web site, wrote this book during her college years!  Incredible!  I have to admit that when I saw that the book was about a weaver, I wasn't sure that it would be very interesting.  But I was so wrong!  The story of Sydelle Mirabel and Wayland North (I love those names) had me hooked from the start.

"The day the rains finally came was like any other, with blistering air coating the canyon in a heavy stillness."  Clifton, the town that Sydelle Mirabel has lived in her whole life, is suffering from a drought that has lasted over ten years.  But that all changes the day that Wayland North comes to town, bringing with him the long-awaited storm.  As thanks for this miracle, North is promised anything he wants, and when Sydelle is mysteriously able to mend his wizard's cloaks, he chooses to take her.  Sydelle has wanted to leave the dusty, small town for as long as she can remember, but this is not the adventure she had planned.  She resents her parents for letting her go so easily, and she resents North for taking her against her will.  But as she travels with this mysterious wizard, and learns more about who he is and what he has planned, she finds herself caring for him, and believing he cares about her as well.

North is determined to stop a war that seems imminent between Auster (their home) and Saldorra, and he tells Syd that she can help him in this task.  As the two of them race to Auster's capital, they are plagued by a series of bizarre catastrophes, including an earthquake and an enormous snowstorm.  The weather, however, is the least of their worries.  They are also being followed by a rogue wizard bent on killing North and taking Sydelle as his own.  As Sydelle ponders why this wizard has taken such an interest in her, it also makes her question North's motives for keeping her close.  And when she begins to understand the full extent of her power, she is forced to face the truth about herself, her history, and her relationship with the man she's falling for.  "She will either be a savior, weaving together the frayed bonds between Saldorra and Auster, or the disastrous force that destroys both kingdoms forever."

Ms. Bracken has woven together a beautiful story full of mystery, intrigue, fantasy, romance and plot twists that keep you wanting to read into the night.  The writing is amazing, and the setting, a completely fantastical world, is described perfectly, with just enough detail to help you see it, but not so much that you started drifting off to sleep (complete with a fictional map of the region).

Sydelle is such a strong, independent, and fiercely loyal and loving person.   Even before she realizes that she has any power, she is determined to hold her own and save the people that she loves.  And North....ah, North....even though he was a moody character (who was in desperate need of a bath), was gallant and brave and had such integrity and devotion that I just loved him.  The relationship that developed between Sydelle and North was so intense, but at the same time, their playful banter was just fun to read.  And the most amazing part was that even though this was one of the best romances I've read, it was completely void of sexual content and vulgar language.  Amazing!  THANK YOU, Ms. Bracken!  I don't know if this was intentional, but it is appreciated!  Proof that it can be done and done beautifully!  I don't know if there's going to be a sequel, but I deeply hope that there is!!

Brightly Woven has joined The Dead-Tossed Waves, Graceling, and The Hunger Games as one of my all-time most loved books!  I highly recommend it!

Read Chapter 1 of Brightly Woven.


Parents should know:  Brightly Woven is a very clean read with no sexual content, and only a few minor kissing scenes.  There is no cussing other than some "by the gods", and "what in the name of the seven hells" types of comments.  There is a fair amount of violence, with some details.  To find out more about the content go to Brightly Woven on Parental Book Reviews.


  1. Gorgeous cover! Will have to look for it. ^^

    It's on my list, tks again!!!
    Gorgeous cover indeed!! =)

  3. The ending concludes well but leaves the possibility for a sequel. Whether Bracken writes more about Sydelle and North or tries her hand at a new set of characters, she is firmly on my "Authors to Watch" list.
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