Over the summer, I was lucky enough to snag a review copy of Bishop O’Connell’s book, The Stolen. I was excited about it from the moment I saw that it was set partly in Tír na nÓg.
Of course, life happened, and I didn’t get around to reading it right away. But when I did? I couldn’t get it out of my head.
I was thrown off a bit by the beginning, as the story opens with a bit of back story about Brendan, who’s on his way to meet Áine, the girl he loves. The blurb, though, focuses on Caitlin and the main plot of the book:
Tonight, for the first time in over a century, a mortal child will be kidnapped by faeries.
When her daughter Fiona is snatched from her bed, Caitlin’s entire world crumbles. Once certain that faeries were only a fantasy, Caitlin must now accept that these supernatural creatures do exist—and that they have traded in their ancient swords and horses for modern guns and sports cars. Hopelessly outmatched, she accepts help from a trio of unlikely heroes: Eddy, a psychiatrist and novice wizard; Brendan, an outcast Fian warrior; and Dante, a Magister of the fae’s Rogue Court. Moving from the busy streets of Boston’s suburbs to the shadowy land of Tír na nÓg, Caitlin and her allies will risk everything to save Fiona. But can this disparate quartet conquer their own inner demons and outwit the dark faeries before it’s too late?
The story itself was well-written and I loved all the Welsh and Irish words and phrases that were scattered throughout (though a punctuation key in the glossary at the end of the book would have been helpful because I am a language geek and like knowing how to pronounce things correctly). I did see one bit coming (though I’m not saying which – you’ll have to read the book yourself and ask me later), but it rather heightened my curiosity instead of diminishing it. I had to know if I was right, after all. 🙂
I actually had more trouble picturing suburban Boston than the mystical land of Tír na nÓg, but I put that down to the fact that rural areas are more familiar to me than the bustling metropolises of the East Coast. The characters were just as vividly painted as the places they inhabited, and a couple of them even reminded me of people I’ve known.
There were a few things that weren’t resolved to my satisfaction, but since this is the first book in a series, I expect the answers I seek will be revealed in later books. And I can’t wait for those books to be available!
In the meantime, if you’d like to pick up your own copy of The Stolen, you can get it at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and many other fine retailers. To find out more about Mr. O’Connell, check out his website. And finally, a big thank you to A.F.E. Smith, without whom I might not have heard of this wonderful book!
(c) 2014. All rights reserved.