Title: Lord of the Fading Lands
Author: CL Wilson (Read by Stephanie Riggio)
Series: Tairen Soul #1
Genre: Romantic Fantasy
Publisher: Audio Realms, Inc. 2010
Once he had scorched the world.
Once he had driven back overwhelming darkness.
Once he had loved with such passion, his name was legend...
Now a thousand years later, a new threat calls him from the Fading Lands, back into the world that had cost him so dearly. Now an ancient, familiar evil is regaining its strength, and a new voice beckons him--more compelling, more seductive, more maddening than any before.
As the power of his most bitter enemy grows and ancient alliances crumble, the wildness in his blood will not be denied. The tairen must claim his truemate and embrace the destiny woven for him in the mists of time.
My Thoughts: This book/series has come highly recommended by multiple people over the years and when I saw that my library had it on digital audio I thought I'd take the chance with it.
The Good Stuff: Wilson's world building, I believe, is first class in this book. I never felt bombarded with a giant info dump issue because she incorporated it so well into the story that it felt natural. The romance, although relying on a take on the "Fated Mate" trope, was well played out and has an Urban Fantasy feel to it as this is only the beginning of the H/h's story. Their love should develop nicely over the course of several books and we weren't completely whammied by insta-love.
The Good stuff about Listening vs. Reading: Being more of a Fantasy than I'm used to, I liked the fact that someone else was reading the potentially difficult names of the characters and places. I know for sure I'd have stumbled and bumbled my way through them and it would have pulled me out of the story continuously.
The Bad Stuff: No conclusions. Absolutely nothing was concluded. Everything from their courtship to who is trying to harm Ellie is left dangling at the end of the book. To be truthful, the ending felt so abrupt I double checked my kindle to see if I missed downloading one of the audio files. But nope, it really does end with no closure on anything. Another thing that was a bit of a downer was that after finishing the book, I'm still am not sure what a Tairen Soul looks like. It's some sort of shapeshifter and as near as I can tell it's a huge animal with a cat like head, deadly snake venom, giant bat wings with a sharp claw at the joint of the wings, and a long dragon like spiked tail. At least that is what I think it said.
The Bad Stuff about the Audio: Although Stephanie Riggio did an adequate job, I hated her voice for Ellysetta. She sounded like a whiny child and I had a hard time accepting her as a love interest for a Fey King who is well over a millennia old.
In a Nutshell: I would rate the book itself a 4 but the unfortunate voice of Ellie on audio brought the rating down to 3. My library has the next book in audio also but read by a different narrator so I'm going to pick it up soon because I have issues with all those dangly bits mocking me.