Review of ENCHANTED NO MORE by Robin D. Owens
Luna, December 2010
Jenni Weaver has no use for the fae. Thanks to them, her entire family, with the exception of herself and her wounded brother, are now dead. She has even less use for her former lover, Aric Paramon. If she hadn't dallied with Aric, she would have been there when the darkfolk attacked, she would have been able to fight. Instead, she'd arrived in time only to see her family destroyed--and then have her brother throw salt and silver at her, disowning her from any relationship. Maybe the lightfolk need her, but she doesn't need them--not even if they promise to make her a princess, accepting her in ways no halfling has been accepted before.
Although Jenni is immune to their offers of acceptance, Jenni's brother, Rothly, is not. When he accepts their offer and is lost in the mists, Jenni is honor-bound to rescue him and to complete the mission he accepted on behalf of the family he no longer admits she is a member of. Together with Aric, she risks the dangers of the shadleeches and ultimately the assaults of the lords of the darkfolk--both to save Rothly and to ensure that the magic bubbles welling up from within the earth are used for good rather than evil.
Author Robin Owens pushes hard on Jenni's anger--ultimately making her less sympathetic than I would have hoped for. She's quick to forgive her brother, who hurt her more than anyone, while slow to forgive the man she loved (and hasn't truly stopped loving) or the elves who had no reason to anticipate danger to Jenni's family and who suffered grievous harm of their own in the attack. I also found Jenni too good at everything. A minute in the elf workshop and she's suggesting changes in the work environment that will make elf programmers more productive. Although she hasn't worked magic for years, she's able to control the powers of near-immortal darkfolk and the strongest of the lightfolk lords. Of course, Aric wants only her forgiveness and to be with her--although, as she was the one who cut him off, it should be her who looks for forgiveness rather than giving it.
I enjoyed Owens' magical world, her concepts of mixing human technology with fae magic, and ultimately the battle between light and dark as the third bubble emerges from the ocean. Not being able to like the protagonist, however, made this a hard story for me to love as much as I'd hoped.
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