Brightly Woven

Brightly Woven

Book rating: 04 Hardback

By (author) Alexandra Bracken

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Paperback $8.28
  • Publisher: Egmont USA
  • Format: Hardback | 354 pages
  • Dimensions: 144mm x 212mm x 34mm | 481g
  • Publication date: 23 March 2010
  • Publication City/Country: New York, NY
  • ISBN 10: 160684038X
  • ISBN 13: 9781606840382
  • Sales rank: 124,056

Product description

When Wayland North brings rain to a region that's been dry for over ten years, he's promised anything he'd like as a reward. He chooses the village elder's daughter, sixteen-year-old Sydelle Mirabel, who is a skilled weaver and has an unusual knack for repairing his magical cloaks. Though Sydelle has dreamt of escaping her home, she's hurt that her parents relinquish her so freely and finds herself awed and afraid of the slightly ragtag wizard who is unlike any of the men of magic in the tales she's heard. Still, she is drawn to this mysterious man who is fiercely protective of her and so reluctant to share his own past. The pair rushes toward the capital, intent to stop an imminent war, pursued by Reuel Dorwan (a dark wizard who has taken a keen interest in Sydelle) and plagued by unusually wild weather. But the sudden earthquakes and freak snowstorms may not be a coincidence. As Sydelle discovers North's dark secret and the reason for his interest in her and learns to master her own mysterious power, it becomes increasingly clear that the fate of the kingdom rests in her fingertips. She will either be a savior, weaving together the frayed bonds between Saldorra and Auster, or the disastrous force that destroys both kingdoms forever.

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Author information

Alexandra Bracken has wanted to be a writer since third grade, and has always wanted to write for children and young adults. She began Brightly Woven as a birthday present for a friend, and the novel grew over a year of wild weather. A May '09 graduate of the College of William & Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia, Brightly Woven is her first novel. You can visit her online at www.alexandrabracken.com.

Customer reviews

By Beth 03 Jun 2011 4

Originally published at A little sun shy.

Brightly Woven is just my kind of thing. Impending war, epic journey, magic that is not understood by all, main character has interesting talent (weaving, folks, weaving!), and main character's love interest is not all they seem. In fact, the words, dark, brooding, and misunderstood come to mind descriptively - what's not to like about that?

Sydelle Mirabil is an engaging female lead, although I did get slightly confused at the beginning by her rapidly veering emotions. But then, she's 16 years old - and I do remember being 16 (it wasn't that long ago!), and allowing for that the emotional rollercoaster makes much more sense. Wayland North, rogue wizard with more to him than at first seems possible, seems much older than 18 - and I kept imagining him as such, then getting thrown utterly whenever his youth was mentioned. The secondary characters, notably Owain (who I wish there was a book about!), were fantastically fleshed out. I really have no complaints with the characters!

Recommendation: If you've read Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine and enjoyed the quiet feistiness and ingenuity of Ella, you'll get on with Sydelle just fine! And Wayland North has all the qualities of a great (and literary-crush-worthy!) male character, with his secrets upon secrets that hide his motives. Peel away his layers with Sydelle and enjoy the ride. I truly hope that Brightly Woven's world is revisited with further novels in the (near) future!

By Jean Thomas 07 May 2011 5

Ever had that feeling that a book gives you-where you know for sure that you're totally in love with it, yet your head is so jumbled with its brilliance that even the day after you've finished reading it, you still can't pinpoint the exact thing that made you love it? I feel like I can't do it justice, even if I tried.

First, the main character. Completely awesome gal. Seriously. Worthy of a country girl. She must be from Kentucky. (Except this is a fantasy book, so she'll have to settle from being from somewhere like Kentucky.) She's a fighter and a kick-ass mother figure. She's not only fiery and fierce, but kind and gentle. The way she worries over North is endearing and I can totally relate to her. She does have a few girly-girl moments, but please, don't we all? This is a character I can get behind, a girl I can cheer for 100%. Always helps that she's freaking hilarious.


"Syd, Syd, Syd," he said, shaking his head.

"What?" I asked flatly. "Can we go up to our rooms yet?"

"Rooms!" He laughed. "What makes you think I got more than one? I'm not a money bag, you know."

I sucked in a sharp breath. "That is completely inappropriate! It's-It's not proper, but apparently you wouldn't know that. You wouldn't know a moral if it slapped you in the face."


You see the perfect blend of smart ass and chaste mother figure? And she carries this same attitude all throughout the book. I love her consistency, her believability, and cleverness. Sydelle has joined the ranks of my favorite heroines.

As for Mr. North. He could really be a scuzball sometimes but he's really very sweet and the jerk-factor only makes for a more believable character. And the wizard thing is sexy. ;)

Overall, I loved the romance (even though the love triangle was a little too weakly represented for the impact it had on Sydelle). It wasn't done too quickly, which is always an important aspect to me. (I really hate it when romances advance too quickly. It makes it harder to believe.) Alexandra Bracken handled it perfectly, not stretching it out too far (almost-the suspense was killing me) and not launching into it too quickly.

But let's talk about the writing: It was fantastic. Can't put it any other way. Well, I could go on and on about how awesome it was, how it was so simple and elegant that it painted perfect little scenes in my head. It wasn't hard to understand and it wasn't so over saturated with fluffiness that it was distracting.

In combination with the characters, the romance and the writing, it made for an excellent plot. It was engaging and exciting. I was watching for the cliché parts that are pitfalls for authors but I didn't find any. It wasn't overly cliché (always a plus) and Alexandra Bracken didn't spare her characters any of life's heartaches.

It really sucks that there isn't a sequel, though. :( I just know that I'm going out to buy this book first chance I get. I need a copy of this stash of awesomeness for my bookshelf.

In conclusion, Alexandra Bracken has not only become one my favorite authors, but her characters have become a favorite as well. If you like authors like Cinda Williams Chima, Maria V. Snyder, or Kristin Cashore, you'll love to add Alexandra Bracken to your list.

-Amelia
The Authoress
www.theauthoress.com

By TeensReadToo 20 Sep 2010 5

One moment, Sydelle and her friend, Henry, are hanging out on the rocks and then next, it's raining. Their village hasn't seen rain in ten years. Shortly after, they spot a wizard. They all head into the village, not knowing just how much their future is about to change.

Wayland North, the wizard, takes the credit for bringing the rain. The chief, Sydelle's father, offers him a reward. He's stunned when he finds out the wizard wants his daughter.

Wayland believes he can stop the upcoming war with Sydelle's help. Together, they set out across the country to deliver their information.

Sydelle can't help hating the wizard who took her away from her friends and family. In time, she grows to understand him more and appreciates him. They must overcome obstacles: rogue wizard attacks, a new queen trying to find her place, and two country leaders determined to go to war for all the wrong reasons.

Sydelle wants to help stop the war so they can get on with their lives, but then she overhears Wayland talking about her and she can't believe her ears. Suddenly, her world's turned upside down and she doesn't know who to trust or what to do next.

This is an awesome debut and a great way to explode onto the YA scene. I love the high fantasy romance with tensions between countries and a probable war on the horizon.