Hello friends! Another review day for a fantasy gem I haven’t seen many people talking about. Kingdoms of Elfin is published by Handheld Press, founded by Kate Macdonald. It’s one of the green publishers out there with recyclable and renewable packaging. From time to time, I like discovering small publishers and books that surprise me getting out of all the hype and books we always see around. Here is one of them. I also need to mention I really like the covers of all Handheld Press books. They are designed by Nadja Gucci, which I must say I find very sophisticated and well reflective of the stories.
So, what’s this book about?
Elfindom is an aristocratic society, jealous of its privileges. The ruling classes engage in such pursuits as patronizing the arts or hunting with the Royal Pack of Werewolves, while the lower orders take pleasure in conducting brutal raiding parties into the world to torment mortals.
The Kingdoms of Elfin are more diverse and widely scattered than is often thought; from the Welsh Elfins who, though constitutionally incapable of faith, remove mountains, and the elegant and witty French Court of Brocéliande where castration almost becomes a vogue, to the Kingdom of Zuy in the Low Countries, trafficking suppositories and religious pictures.
This book is a collection of 16 enchanting stories set in Elfin Kingdoms. They are centered around Elfin aristocracy, but there’s a parade of many other characters that make the stories richer, like common elfins, werewolves, humans, etc.
The stories are loosely linked. A character would appear in another story randomly, or the settings might be the same for some stories.
But, this is quite different than our usual fantasy worlds in how she created the vibe of her characters. The fairies are not immortal; but they live for centuries and have no souls. They have wings but can’t use them. Only servants can fly. They are sometimes cruel to the humans and may abduct them. I don’t know if this will make sense, but Warner’s creatures are quite cold and careless. They don’t care much about each other’s feelings, or mortal’s feelings or anythings that happens because of them. I found this an interesting approach.
The writing is definitely very unique, very impressive. I could recommend this even only for the writing. It’s witty and wicked at the same time. There’s fantasy, imagination, fun, surprises all together. I loved her characters and this world of Elfins.
If you like fairy books, retellings, folklore, fantasy, I’d definitely recommend to check this out.
So, that’s all from me today. As always, I’d love to hear from you in comments. Thanks so much for stopping by and happy reading!
My thanks to Handheld Press for sending this copy, opinions are my own.