July 18, 2024

“This is no ordinary fairy-tale, but I shall start it just the same… Once upon a time, eleven years ago to be precise, in a land, oh, just around the corner, lived a young girl called Faedra.” -From “The Amulet”

That is how my favorite book series begins. I do not want to spoil too much of the series, but there are spoilers ahead so you can understand the reason I am so drawn to this series and why my life revolves around it. I will also include the prices of each book as a NOOK book, as that was how I first encountered them.

The Amulet (free on all platforms) is the first book in this series. We watch as Faedra grieves her mother’s death, and we see her adopt her dog, Faen. As Faedra approaches her 18th birthday, she notices a strange occurrence in her hands: when she is angry, they burn. On her birthday, she is greeted with a handwritten and wax-sealed letter from her mother, explaining that Faedra is Custodian of an ancient amulet, the Amulet of Azran, and that she is descended from a fae line. After her birthday, something terrible happens to all the fauna in all realms, and Faedra, Faen and Jocelyn – Faen’s younger sister – go on a quest to retrieve the Book of Anohs, which is missing and thus responsible for the sudden change. The three friends find that Princess Vivianna, the daughter of the fae king, took the book.

The Emerald Staff is the second book in the series. Henry has a new girlfriend for the first time in 12 years named Anna. At a Halloween party, Faedra learns that “Anna” is actually Vivianna. In a fit of rage at the party, Vivianna used The Ruby Staff, a mythical object that was supposedly destroyed, to kidnap Henry after forcing him to tell Faedra that he was not actually her father. Faedra tells Faen to go away as she goes home to process everything, and finds out what a term that she was called by Vivianna meant.

Once Faedra learns that the term means half-breed, she goes to Azran to speak with the king, who tells her that she is his daughter. Faen agrees to take her to see Draconis, king of the dragons, to see if they can borrow the Emerald Staff to find the Ruby Staff. Draconis agrees, but only if Faedra can return his egg, which is hidden somewhere in the World of Men. She agrees to do so, and races back to her world with Faen to search for the egg. The egg is found and Faedra is allowed to borrow the Emerald Staff. She and Faen use it to go to the Ruby Staff, inside Azran castle, where Vivianna and Savu – Draconis’ twin brother – are arguing with the king while Henry is held at knife-point. Eventually, Savu and Vivianna are defeated when Faedra absorbs Savu’s powers, and life force, and must be sent to the arctic circle to cool down. The Fae king finds out about Faedra and Faen’s relationship and blesses it.

The Cipher Wheel is the third book in the series, and one of the shortest ones, too. Faedra is learning to control Savu’s power, but is afraid that his evil will overtake her will. She agrees to take part in Falcon Chase – a scavenger hunt – with her friends when it comes to her town, and is kidnapped at the end. The four – Faedra, Jocelyn, Faen and Etyran (an old friend of Faen’s) – wind up in Drofoz, the realm of the druids and ovates. There, they are asked to help defeat Arawn, an evil sorceror who has taken over the realm, to which they agree. After escaping from the prison with two ovates related to a friend of theirs, Faen proposes to Faedra. She accepts, and they return to the hidden location of the other ovates. In the final fight against Arawn, Faen is killed and Faedra cannot control her anger, which causes the entire castle to fall. Faedra managed to bring Faen back, and the friends leave Drofoz to return to the World of Men.

The Ice Diamond Cuff is the fourth and final book in the series. Faedra and Faen plan their wedding to be before a version of the Olympics, involving all seven realms. After the games, Faedra and Faen have another wedding in the World of Men with Faedra’s human friends and family present, but the wedding is cut short when messengers arrive to tell her that Azran is under attack and that the king is in her room at her home because he is injured.

Faedra and Faen leave the ceremony quickly to return to the Bennets’ home and the king dies. Faedra tries to bring him back to life, but fails and her powers are sucked into a beautiful bracelet that was a wedding gift from the realm of ice. Everyone decides to jump to action and attempt to rescue Azran, where Faedra is now queen, and Faedra goes to retrieve the Book of Anohs once again. She and Etyran are confronted by the representative from the realm of ice where he attempts to use his powers against them. Faedra, however, manages to block the incoming ice with powers, and upon her return to the World of Men, asks if her powers are returning. She is told they are not, but is also informed that she is with child and that the bracelet did not prevent against the child’s powers out of “sheer dumb luck.” The members of all realms help to save Azran, and Vivianna dies a noble death while protecting Faedra from another onslaught of Zaven’s ice.

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