First I’m going to share a little story. I don’t remember when it was for sure but a few years back I stumbled upon a paperback copy of “The Fairy Godmother” by Mercedes Lackey. Even though I’ve been an avid reader of fantasy fiction since even before reading “Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets” in the late 1990’s I hadn’t read of Mercedes Lackey. But I read “The Fairy Godmother”, absolutely loved it, and made that I got my hands on the rest of the Tales of the 500 Kingdom books that have published so far.
This is what that series has taught me to expect of Mercedes Lackey: action, adventure, and kick ass heroines. Three great qualities in books of any genre. So when I was browsing NetGalley and saw the first book of a new series, one that promised to feature even more powerful female characters (what with a series title of One Dozen Daughters) I was intrigued. Then I started the book and I was captivated.
“The House of the Four Winds” starts out in Swansgaard, a small kingdom with too many daughters to afford their dowries. This means that once the girls turn eighteen they are free to venture out on their owns and make their own fortunes. The first book starts with Clarice, an accomplished swordswoman, deciding to take a ship to the New World. There she meets a motley crew of seamen, including the dashing Dominick. But the thing is, Clarice is masquerading as Clarence Swann, a wealthy gentleman.
The plot runs quickly with a normal sea journey turning into a story of mutiny, pirates, treasure, and then romance enters the scene. The characters were lively and well written and the intrigue was great. There was even some humor thrown in!
So, even though I have a feeling that the next novels in the series won’t be following Clarice (I am hoping there will be mentions of marriages, children, etc.) since there are eleven other daughters to follow the lives of, I will still be looking forward to getting my hands on the books.
Recommended for anyone who has read and enjoyed Mercedes Lackey books, likes fantasy and strong female characters.