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Brightwing is the story of Lucy Brightwing, the last living member of the Tequesta tribe, and her life-changing run-in with infamous brothers Edgar and Mallory Battle. Lucy is a hardworking, nature-loving, beautiful young woman. Edgar is my favorite kind of criminal- one with a personal moral code, like Captain Jack Sparrow. He's recently escaped from prison, and on the run with his younger brother Mallory. Mallory is an absolute sociopath. More on this later.
Lucy is given the opportunity to steal some uncut jewels, and her cut of the deal would be enough for her to purchase some land to start her own tribe. She experiences car trouble on her way home after the theft, and Edgar and Mallory see her on the side of the road and decide to use her as a hostage. Little do they know, she is not an average woman, and she could easily escape from them or kill them- at the risk of losing her jewels. She also knows that she must stay alive at all costs, to keep the Tequesta blood alive. Together the three evade the law and must decide how to resolve their individual problems.
Brightwing is extremely well-written- the language is beautiful, the editing is well-done, and the action and dialogue flow comfortably. Lucy is a cool, very likable character. She is resourceful and powerful, and her love of the land brings back memories of Disney's Pocahontas. Edgar is also likeable, although as the author pointed out in her interview with this blog, his character is not that of the traditional male hero. Lucy really is more powerful than him, and he experiences tons of personal conflict in the story regarding his brother and his desire for freedom. I absolutely hated Mallory. Mallory reminded me of Lennie from Of Mice and Men- IF Lennie was a psychopath, IF Lennie did not recognize other beings as having life, and IF Lennie found personal pleasure in cruel, unspeakable acts. However, Mallory's character is part of what made this story unique- he is presented as sympathetic from some angles, which was an interesting perspective that stretched my thinking.
My favorite part of the story is the end. The last 100 or 200 pages on my iPhone were really fun and exciting, with cool twists. I also enjoyed reading about how Lucy transferred power from the men to herself gradually. If I could change anything about the story, it would be to take away a little bit of the swamp descriptions- I've never liked setting descriptions in books, and although the descriptions are eloquent and the settings intricate, I prefer more action and dialogue. I would also make certain scenes less graphic. I can't watch CSI or anything like that because graphic violence, particularly of a sexual nature freaks me out.
I would recommend this book to adults who enjoy stories of survival, action, and nature. The Floridian swamp setting is almost a character in this book, it plays such a big part, and nature lovers might really enjoy that aspect.
Thanks to the generous author, I am giving away two e-copies of this book. Please fill out the form below. Ages 13+ only. This giveaway will end in one week, on September 3 at midnight.
**Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.**