Saturday, October 25, 2014

Tori Review: "You Are Mine" by Janeal Falor

Title: You Are Mine
Author: Janeal Falor
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
Publication: May 6, 2013
Pages: 370


Serena knows a few simple things. She will always be owned by a warlock. She will never have freedom. She will always do what her warlock wishes, regardless of how inane, frivolous, or cruel it is. And if she doesn’t follow the rules, she will be tarnished. Spelled to be bald, inked, and barren for the rest of her life—worth less than the shadow she casts.

Then her ownership is won by a barbarian from another country. With the uncertainty that comes from belonging to a new warlock, Serena questions if being tarnished is really worse than being owned by a barbarian, and tempts fate by breaking the rules. When he looks the other way instead of punishing her, she discovers a new world. The more she ventures into the forbidden, the more she learns of love and a freedom just out of reach. Serena longs for both. But in a society where women are only ever property, hoping for more could be deadly.

I found myself a little thrown off when I first began You Are Mine. I am quite the independent little thing and it was hard to place myself in the middle of such a story. Serena is from a world where women are breeders and nothing more.  Women are owned. A girl belongs to her father until her blood is tested for its magic components. Based upon the results, warlocks (men of the society) bid for said girl. The highest bidder now owns her and she has NO choice but to comply and marry this man.

It is then her job to produce heirs of the male variety, as females are only worth as much as what magic they possess in their blood. Only warlocks practice magic and they use it and their fists to continuously punish their women. Anything from a hair being out of place to looking a man in the eye for too long can result in a beating of the physical or magical sort.

You see now why I was a bit on the shaky side with this book. Even the writing felt rigid and just too constrained at first. I felt like I wanted to just breathe some fight back into these women or place myself in the crosshairs to protect them. In Serena’s world, that would have meant either my death or my tarnishment – a type of banishment that consists of being spelled to be inked, bald, and worthless. 

When Serena’s blood shows large concentrations of magic, she is sold to a man that you would never want anywhere near any female you care about. He is a disgusting and revolting character.  A “barbarian” named Zade from a distant country then “wins” her in a tournament and Serena finds herself belonging to a man who is nothing like any warlock she has ever known.

About halfway through the book I stopped because sleep inevitably beckoned and I was still so unsettled with how I felt about the book. I think something just made up my mind for me overnight. Dreams or what have you, I woke and was anxious to find out what was to become of Serena and Zade.

3.5 quills to You Are Mine. It is the kind of book that just sneaks up on you a little, slowly reeling you in until it firmly has your attention. I couldn’t quite give it 4 quills, as I was looking for a little something more.  However, it did strike my fancy enough that I am about to settle in and read the second installment of the Mine series, Mine to Spell.

Until next time!

  Tori is a  24 year old tiny oddball of a woman who ardently loves rainy days and festive repartee. A college graduate, she holds a degree in communications with an emphasis on writing for media. Tori is currently an Assistant librarian working towards getting her Master's in Library Science. You will not find it surprising that this Auggie-Talk Co-Blogger is a passionate devotee of impulsive bookstore perusing and reading far past the point of exhaustion.

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