This book will be available in October 2009.
Albia has grown up with no knowledge of her mother or her father, the powerful Macbeth. Instead, she knows the dark lure of the Wychelm Wood and the moors, where she's been raised by three strange sisters. It's only when the ambitious Macbeth seeks out the sisters to foretell his fate that Albia's life becomes tangled with the man who leaves nothing but bloodshed in his wake. She even falls in love with Fleance, Macbeth's rival for the throne. Yet when Albia learns that she has the second sight, she must decide whether to ignore the terrible future she foresees--or to change it. Will she be able to save the man she loves from her murderous father? And can she forgive her parents their wrongs, or must she destroy them to save Scotland from tyranny?
Character Development: 10/10
Overall Enjoyment: 9/10
Cussing: Not really.
Alcohol, Drugs, etc: Yes, drinking, and some poisons and things.
Sexual Content: For one character, the purpose of her life is to bear children for her husband, so yes, there is talk and scenes and things. For the other characters, it is in dialogue and some narration, but there is never anything too graphic or unnecessary for the plot. Mentions of rape.
Disturbing Images/Violence: Some very disturbing murders of adults and children alike that are graphic, bloody, and creepy. Some child neglect and sort-of abuse. Frequent small things that are thrown into the narration that are slightly nightmarish...
Fraught with danger and magic, this quick-paced historical fantasy from an author of renowned writing prowess was a beautiful read. Lisa Klein ingrains Albia into the plot of Macbeth flawlessly--and as I am not extremely familiar with the play, I wonder how it could possibly be that she was Klein's invention!
I will always remember Lisa Klein for her skills in manipulating voice. In her previous two books, she also blew me away. Her other narrators, Ophelia, Lizzie, and Rosanna, are all so different in personality and perspective, and even time period. Albia and Grelach join the ranks of these unique women and live up to their standards. Their individual voices are just as differing, personal and powerful, and conveyed along with the storyline a deeper-than-words sense of the setting--11th century Scotland. Phenomenal.
Through Klein's archaic prose, we come to understand the grief and suffering of Macbeth's lady, and see on an intimate level the progression from ambition to madness of the king himself. And, of course, there was their daughter. Fiery, spirited, impassioned. She was a captivating character that I would have liked to know. Her emotions were real and her actions decisive. Her struggles with everything--from love to murder--are heartfelt. Klein again attempted to portray an extremely volatile cast of characters, and the result was this fascinating book that has joined the ranks of my favorite historical fiction alongside, naturally, Ophelia and Two Girls of Gettysburg.