ISBN: 0373802137 $13.95 551 pp.
Elphame's Choice by P.C. Cast is a wonderful follow-up to Cast's first novel, Goddess by Mistake. Elphame's Choice is set in the same world, Partholon about 125 years after the events in Goddess by Mistake.
Elphame, the great-granddaughter of Rhiannon and the daughter of Etain, the current Goddess Incarnate is struggling to find her way. Born part-human and part-centaur, she is worshiped by the people of Partholon and she hates it. Elphame is a woman--not a goddess. Epona, the Goddess, has never directly spoken to Elphame. As a matter of fact, Elphame has never experienced anything magical except her hybrid looks.
MacCallan Castle, according to Goddess by Mistake was the site of a terrible atrocity. The Fomorians, vampire-like demons attacked the castle, murdered all the men and used the woman as incubators for their children. Fomorians had lost the ability to reproduce and had discovered that human woman could be used for children. These women died a horrible death at the birth of these Fomorian off-spring. With the help of Rhiannon and Epona, the Fomorians were defeated and driven into the Wastelands. MacCallan Castle was destroyed when it was used a funeral pyre for the dead.
Elphame has decided MacCallan Castle should be rebuilt. She hopes those who join her endeavor will accept her just as a woman and not a goddess. To assist her in rebuilding the castle are her brother, Cuchulainn, Danann, Stonemaster and centaur, Brighid, a Huntress and centaur, Brenna, a Healer, and many others. This band of young people are hopeful that MacCallan Castle will be a place for them to start over and have a better way of life.
The Fomorians are not done with Partholon. While the original Fomorians have long since died off of a plague, their children have survived. Epona, in her infinite wisdom, allowed some of the mothers to survive. These mothers loved their children, even though they where fathered by Fomorians. These hybrid children raised by loving mothers fight a constant battle to retain their humanity. Lochlan, their leader, believes in a prophecy told to him by his mother--the hybrid Fomorians will gain salvation from madness with the blood of a dying Goddess. Lochlan believes this to be Elphame--who is also his lifemate.
P.C. Cast has created a wonderful and rich mythology for Elphame's Choice. The intricate characterizations make the book very interesting to read. This is not just as standard romantic fantasy. There are no buxom heroines in distress. Elphame is strong in both character and body. While some parts of the story are traditional romance, most is not. The storyline has a few twists that are not anticipated. The fantasy element of the book is what dominates the storyline. The ending will even surprise most. It is not your typical 'happy ever after.' I enjoyed reading this book.
P.C. Cast is a professional teacher and speaker. Her first book, Goddess by Mistake won the Holt Medallion in the category of best paranormal romance, The Prism Award, and the Laurel Wreath Award for Excellence in Published Romance Fiction. Goddess by Mistake will be re-released by Luna entitled Partholon by Mistake in the fall of 2005. Her other works include Goddess of Spring, Goddess of the Sea, and Goddess of Light. For more information, please visit her website at http://www.pccast.net/.
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|Article Type:||Book Review|
|Date:||Mar 1, 2005|
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