STORYLINE: A mysterious disease attacks flying horses (oh yes!) in a Welsh town, where the economy depends on the activities surrounding these magnificent beasts. Relocate to a new settlement with hope for a bright future, or stay in a place where the prospect might be bleak; that’s the decision the folks in the town of Tremeirchson have to make.
Emma: A young rider who is torn between responsibility to her family and her attraction to two brothers from a competing barn.
Davyd: The brother who longs for Emma’s attention, but the one least likely to win her.
Evan: The rider in his family and likely successor, as head of the family barn.
I LIKED: the concept of flying horses. Call me limited in the reading department, but apart from the legend of Pegasus, I haven’t read any work of fiction recently that contains these creatures. The writer did a nice job of putting me in the Welsh village she created and giving flight to these horses.
Though the main characters are young, they display a level of maturity that is in keeping with the timeframe of the novel.
I COULD HAVE LIVED WITHOUT: the pain and despair that came with the losses. The story was poignant in parts because of the death of the horses, the passing of one family member and the town that had to be left behind. The writer does well in conveying the emotions of the characters and putting the reader inside their situation.
COVER NOTE: I think a picture of the Welsh countryside described in the book, along with an actual picture of a horse (wings and all) would do this book a LOT more justice.
OVERALL COMMENTS: I’m a girl who has both feet firmly planted on the ground when it comes to reading material, so flying horses are way out there in terms of a storyline.
However, Linda Ulleseit does well in painting a beautiful setting, along with an interesting and varied cast of characters. At times, I had to consciously separate grooms/riders/stewards in my mind, however, the main players are always distinct.
The writer also pays keen attention to the setting, ensuring that the technology, food and living conditions are in keeping with the era. I like the addition of Welsh terms, which adds to the authenticity of the story.
The mystery was well played and the truth convincing when it unfolded. It left me with the thought that many times, people do things with one aim in mind, but the consequences explode beyond expectation.
SOURCE: I received On a Wing and a Dare from the author in exchange for a review.