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Victoria Strauss

Victoria StraussYou can find maps, glossaries, excerpts, and plenty of other information about Victoria Strauss‘ books at her website.

The Arm of the Stone: Mixed opinions

The Arm of the Stone by Victoria Strauss

The world has been torn asunder. Originally held together by disciplines of mind and hand, devotees of the powers of the mind have been pushed aside by the technological innovations of the devotees of hand power. As belief in the power of magic fades, the last enclaves of magic users simply disappear. But they are not actually gone. They have formed a second world, accessible only by a few Gates that bind the two worlds together. This new world is held together by the power of the Stone, a magical artifact that bestows all knowledge upon its possessor. Bron has been raised knowing that his was the last family in the 1000-year history of the world to hold the Stone before it was seized by the evil Percival, who used the Stone to set up a system of oppressive rule enforced by the Guardians. He has been raised on the Tale, a story of his noble lineage that must be kept secret at all costs. It foretells the c... Read More

More fantasy novels by Victoria Strauss

The Burning Land  and The Awakened City — (2004, 2006) Publisher: After long years of oppression, the rightful rulers of Arsace have finally reclaimed the holy city of Baushpar and the First Temple of the God. At last, the desecrated temples can be rebuilt and the people’s suffering redressed. But tensions between the secular and sacred worlds abound, and rumors arise of renegade Shapers — powerful mages who hold no allegiance to either the King or the Brethren, and whose magic knows no restraint. Unbeknownst to the elders of her people, the gifted Axane has dared to dream, to see the outside world beyond the hidden enclave of Refuge — a world the people of Refuge no longer believe exists — that has no tolerance for change and will soon break down the walls of their secret sanctuary. But Axane’s dreaming is forbidden, and to warn Refuge is to doom herself. Chosen to lead an expedition to reclaim the renegade mages, Gyalo, a young Shaper, must journey across the mystic Burning Land in a deadly adventure of danger and temptation, a journey that will force him to face his innermost demons and possibilities both sacred and profane. For Refuge hides a shocking truth about the very nature of the world itself — a secret that will start a war without end.

book reviews Victoria Strauss The Burning Land The Awakened Citybook reviews Victoria Strauss The Burning Land The Awakened City

Passion Blue — (2013-2014) Publisher: When seventeen-year-old Giulia, the orphaned, illegitimate daughter of a Milanese nobleman, learns she’s to be packed off to a life behind convent walls, she begs an astrologer-sorcerer for a talisman that will secure what she’s certain is her heart’s desire: true love and a place where she belongs. But does she really know the compass of her heart? The convent of Santa Marta is full of surprises, including a workshop of nuns who are creating paintings of astonishing beauty using a luminous blue mixed from a secret formula: Passion Blue. As Giulia’s own artistic self is awakened she’s torn: should she follow the young man who promises to help her escape? Or stay and satisfy her growing desire to paint? This richly imagined novel of a girl’s daring journey towards self-discovery transports readers into the fascinating world of Renaissance Italy where love and faith and art inspire passion — of many different hues.

fantasy book reviews science fiction book reviewsfantasy book reviews science fiction book reviews

Stand-alone novels:

Victoria Strauss The Lady of Rhuddesmere reviewThe Lady of Rhuddesmere — (1982) Young adult. Publisher: Geraint, the bastard son of the wealthy and vengeful Baron of Wallestoke, is sent into service at the remote estate of Rhuddesmere. He is warmly received by Rhuddesmere’s Lady and her family, and treated with a respect and kindness he has never known. But Rhuddesmere holds many secrets, and unbeknownst to Geraint, his father has sent him there as a spy. When he stumbles on a forbidden ritual and flees back to Wallestoke, he sets in motion a chain of events that unleashes a terrible fate on Rhuddesmere and all its people.

book review Victoria Strauss WorldstoneWorldstone — (1985) Young adult. Publisher: Sixteen-year-old Alexina has always known she is different. But not until she rescues Taryn, a young traveler from a parallel world, does she realize the extrasensory abilities she possesses. Eagerly she joins Taryn and his companions in their quest to regain a powerful object, stolen by a renegade from their world. The search leads them deep into the wilderness, to an enchanted palace surrounded by thorns. There the thief waits, a being of incalculable strength who calls to Alexina with a power she cannot deny, and a promise she does not understand. In the battle that follows, good and evil become indistinguishable, and Alexina learns that friendship does not always guard against betrayal.

book review Victoria Strauss Guardian of the Hills Guardian of the Hills — (1995) Young adult. Publisher: After her father’s death, the hardships of the Depression compel sixteen-year-old Pamela and her half-Indian mother back to Flat Hills, Arkansas. Tensions mount as Pamela’s wealthy grandfather embarks on an excavation of the pyramid-shaped hills from which the town takes its name — hills the Indians regard as sacred. As men and machinery move into the dig site, accidents and mishaps multiply, and crows begin to gather in the hellish heat — thousands of them, ominous and waiting. Below the hills, something terrible is waking, an ancient evil eager to be free. Pamela must face the choice her mother rejected years ago: to fight the battle to become Guardian of her tribe, or to unleash the spirit of Stern Dreamer upon the world.