Next Author: Tamora Pierce
Previous Author: Adrian Phoenix

Meredith Ann Pierce

Meredith Ann Pierce(1958- )
Meredith Ann Pierce received both a B.A. and an M.A. from the University of Florida and an M.L.S. from Florida State University, and spends her days as a librarian. By night, she writes. Her hobbies include composing music and playing the harp. She lives in the woods south of Micanopy, Florida, in a house powered by solar energy. The Darkangel was nominated for a Mythopoeic Award for adult fantasy literature. Learn more at Meredith Ann Pierce’s website.

The Darkangel: An Incredible Tale

The Darkangel by Meredith Ann Pierce

I picked up The Darkangel the first time at my school library when I was 13 and I stayed up past three in the morning trying to finish it; It was that captivating. It has all the components of a fairytale, and yet is worked into a fantasy novel that includes vampires, gargoyles and other strange and macabre creatures.

Don't be put off by the word 'vampire' though; this book isn't yet another vampire book of that most over-used genre, but an incredible story with a huge scope and scale that stretches from a small village, to the vampire's forbidden castle, to a seemingly endless desert.

It begins when a young Aerial's mistress is kidnapped upon the hills by a dark angel, or a vampire. Taking it upon herself to rescue her, she sets off on a wonderful journey that includes characters you've only ever seen in myths and legends. With her bravery, kindness an... Read More

A Gathering of Gargoyles: A Lost Masterpiece

A Gathering of Gargoyles by Meredith Ann Pierce

A Gathering of Gargoyles is the second of Meredith Ann Pierce's Darkangel trilogy, beginning with The Dark Angel and culminating in The Pearl of the Soul of the World, which together create one of the most beautifully crafted and presented stories that I have ever come across. As told in The Darkangel, the story is of Aerial, a simple slave in a wealthy household whose mistress Eoduin was captured by one of the dreaded winged vampyres, who drink the blood and steals the souls of women. Aerial followed her mistress, becoming a servant in the Irrylath's house, and to her horror, eventually being chosen to be his last bride. But with the help of the dwarf-like duarough Talb and a magical drought, she restored the dark... Read More

The Pearl of the Soul of the World: Had a lot to live up to

The Pearl of the Soul of the World by Meredith Ann Pierce

As the last installment of the Darkangel trilogy, The Pearl of the Soul of the World had a lot to live up to, as well as a lot to wrap up. In the first book The Darkangel, slavegirl Aerial saved the darkangel Irrylath from the misery of his own existence under the power of the White Witch and returned him to his mother's house. In A Gathering of Gargoyles she undertook another task, in searching for the lost lons to fight against the White Witch in the coming battle and in doing so discovered her own extraordinary heritage. Now the various countries of Aerial's world have gathered together in a great army to march against the witch, with her husband Irrylath at its head.

But the story begins in the most unexpected way. As the story o... Read More

The Woman Who Loved Reindeer: A must-read

The Woman Who Loved Reindeer by Meredith Ann Pierce

Set in a prehistoric fantasy setting of ice and snow, The Woman Who Loved Reindeer refers to its two main characters: the young Caribou and the child she names Reindeer. As someone who experiences prophetic dreams, Caribou lives alone until her sister-in-law brings to her a golden-haired child. Claiming that it is not her husband Visjna's child (Caribou's brother), Branja begs her to take in the child before Visjna returns from the season-long hunt and so that the child's true father cannot come to claim him.

Caribou is initially disdainful of such a request, but the tiny infant soon warms her heart. Due to his love of the reindeer herds, she names him after them, and goes about raising him to the best of his ability. But soon it becomes clear that he is no ordinary child. After a terrifying run-in with a golden reindeer that results in her brother's dea... Read More

Birth of the Firebringer: You haven’t read this before

Birth of the Firebringer by Meredith Ann Pierce

Meredith Ann Pierce is best known for her wonderful Darkangel trilogy, which sadly is not as renowned as it deserves to be. Even lesser known is Pierce's Firebringer trilogy, based on stories she wrote and dreams she experienced as a young child, which chronicle the lives and adventures of a tribe of unicorns exiled from their home.

Legend tells of how the unicorns were driven out from their Hallow Hills by the serpentine wyverns, who by trickery, superior numbers and mastery of fire, forced the Princess Halla to remove her people from their ancestral home and find new feeding grounds in the Vale. But all is not well; the unicorns pine for their true homelands, especially the Mirror of the Moon, to which a dangerous pilgrimage is done ever... Read More

Dark Moon: Middle book

Dark Moon by Meredith Ann Pierce

Ever notice how the second parts of trilogies are often the weakest? This is not always the case, but it often happens in both books and movies, and it definitely occurs here. Dark Moon is the second part of The Firebringer trilogy, which began with the fascinating Birth of the Firebringer and ending with the explosive The Son of Summer Stars. But smack dab in the middle is Dark Moon, and though it is far from being a bad book, it is unfavorably compared to the volumes either side of it.

In the preceding novel we are introduced to the young Prince Alijan, whose name means 'dark moon', and who is the subject of a prophecy that describes the one who will eventually win back the Hallow Hills for the unicorns. Taken over by the poisonou... Read More

The Son of Summer Stars: Unicorns get back their dignity

The Son of Summer Stars by Meredith Ann Pierce

In the last book in the Firebringer trilogy, we finally come to the event that the two previous books have been steadily building toward: the retaking of the unicorns' ancestral home from the treacherous wyverns. As the prophesied 'Firebringer', Prince Alijan is looked to as the means of regaining their Hallow Hills and Jan is certainly up to the challenge. Having finally made peace with the marauding gryphons, and finding happiness in his beloved Tek and their twin children, Jan has readied his tribe to march out to their homelands and do battle.

But there is one matter of business not yet dealt with — that of Korr, the mad once-king of the unicorns. Knowing his father to hold a terrible secret, Jan vows its discovery and leaves the herd under the power of Tek whilst he chases his father across plains and deserts. It ... Read More

The FIREBIRDS Anthologies: Excellent short fiction for young adults

The FIREBIRDS anthologies edited by Sharyn November

Firebirds is the first of the three FIREBIRD anthologies edited by Sharyn November. Some people don’t like short stories, especially in anthologies where you are reading several different authors. I, however, almost always have a volume of short stories on my bedside table. Even if I manage to get no other reading done during a hectic day, it is a way for me to finish a whole story in 15-20 minutes. In an age where many authors seem incapable of writing anything other than multi-novel epics, it is a treasure to be able to enjoy a whole tale in one sitting.

Many collections of fantasy short stories are a compilation of hit or miss attempts to match a loosely defined theme for the volume. The Firebird Anthologies far exceed the industry standard. They are edited by Shar... Read More

More fantasy by Meredith Ann Pierce

fantasy book reviews science fiction book reviewsTreasure at the Heart of the Tanglewood — (2001) Young adult. Publisher: First she is Brown Hannah, a drab healer living in the enchanted Tanglewood. Then, when she challenges the magician who holds her captive, she becomes Green Hannah. Next, she is Golden Hannah traveling through the land, with talking animals and birds by her side. And, finally, Russet Hannah, when she makes the long journey back to where she first grew, and learns her true story. This eagerly anticipated novel, Meredith Ann Pierce’s first in five years, is well worth the wait.

fantasy book reviews science fiction book reviewsWaters Luminous and Deep — (2004) Publisher: Meredith Ann Pierce’s acclaimed novels are the proof of a remarkable imagination. Here is more proof — eight shorter works of fiction, from fragment to retold fairy tale to novella, each with a strong heroine, a tangibly imagined world, and unforgettable imagery. Waters Luminous and Deep encapsulates the evolution of one writer’s unmistakable style, and has all of the power of her longer work.