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The Battle Sylph (Sylph Series)

The Battle Sylph (Sylph Series) [Kindle Edition]

L. J. McDonald
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Product Description

Product Description

Solie finds herself kidnapped as a sacrifice for a dangerous battle sylph named Heyou, but she fights back and takes on control of him, an immensely powerful shape-shifter. Solie & Heyou flee death to seek sanctuary, and Heyou begins to fill Solie with desires that threaten to change the world.

About the Author

Leanna Renee Hieber graduated with a BFA in Theatre, a focus in the Victorian Era and a scholarship to study in London. She has adapted works of 19th Century literature for the stage and her one-act plays have been produced around the country. Her novella Dark Nest won the 2009 Prism Award for excellence in Futuristic, Fantasy or Paranormal Romance. The Strangely Beautiful Tale of Miss Percy Parker won double 2010 Prism Awards for Best Fantasy and Best First Book, the 2010 Orange County Book Buyer's Best Award (Young Adult category) and the rights have been sold for adaptation into a Broadway musical theatre production currently in development. A member of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, Romance Writers of America and International Thriller Writers, she’s thrilled to have been named RWA NYC’s 2010 Author of the Year. A member of actors unions AEA, SAG and AFTRA, Leanna works often in film and television. A devotee of ghost stories and Goth clubs, she resides in New York City with her real-life hero and beloved rescued lab rabbit Persebunny.

L.J. McDonald is a fresh new voice in Fantasy Romance. Her first book, The Battle Sylph, was published by Dorchester in 2008. It was quickly followed by its sequels: The Shattered Sylph and Queen of the Sylphs.

Helen Scott Taylor is a former American Title winner whose fantasy romances The Magic Knot and The Phoenix Charm have been called “wonderfully creative” and “lusciously sexy” by The Chicago Tribune.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 472 KB
  • Print Length: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Montlake Romance; Reprint edition (23 Feb 2010)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S. r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00390BE30
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #203,006 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars
4.0 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Kind of dorky 13 Jun 2010
By humanitysdarkerside VINE VOICE
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
I'm not really sure why I think this book is really silly. It has everything it takes to make it an excellent book: magic creatures, dark magic, accidental friendships and romance.

The book is about a young woman, Solie, who is captured and intended as a sacrifice. This sacrifice is supposed to lure a battle sylph over to Solie's world and bind him to a man. Of course, fate intervenes and the battle sylph is bound to our heroine and helps her escape.

This king tries to destroy Solie, blaming her for the death of his heir. Heyyou (the name Solie gave the battle sylph) does his best to protect her. There are harrowing adventures, or at least they are supposed to be. Somehow the suspense doesn't quite get off the ground.

I still gave it a 3. The 3 is because the book was readable and had its moments. I'm certain that fans of this specific genre would disagree with my review.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars "The Sylph" series book 1 29 Sep 2013
By Book Addict TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Kindle Edition
LJM has created a fantastic new fantasy world in which humans control Sylphs. These Sylphs are called (or coerced) into the human world and bound to a male master. The elemental sylphs who utilise fire, earth, air and water are commonplace; however the most coveted and rare are the Battlers; Sylphs created for war and destruction.

When the King's son undertakes the ritual to call a battle sylph, things do not go as planned. He is supposed to kill the girl bound in front of him to bind the Battler to him, but he is weak and ineffectual, whilst the selected sacrifice is determined to fight for her life. As a result something happens that has never occurred before. The intended sacrifice Solie not only survives the ritual, she names and binds the Battler; becoming the first woman to not only become a sylph master, she has the most powerful type at her command.

Of course the King cannot sit idly by and see his kingdom threatened by a slip of a girl with a Battler, and sends out his own men with their own Battlers to kill Solie which would sever her Battler's ties to the human world.

As Solie gets to know her Battler whom she accidentally names Heyou, he is unbound by the normal restrictions placed on Battlers and begins to reveal what his kind want. The additional Battlers that track him and Solie offer further insight into the Sylph mentality and soon the reader is empathising with the Battlers; no matter how brutal they may be.

This is an exciting and unique fantasy romance which doesn't read like a teen romance despite Solie only being 17. I did find her somewhat immature at times but she certainly grows throughout the story line.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Tricky one this .... 28 April 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Overall I liked this book and will probably buy the rest in the series as well, however, there are a few issues I think people should know if they want to buy this; the main couple in this book while fairly developed and engaging are very young (teen-aged), and as such I found it not difficult but odd to connect with them. (I'm not much older myself but it still felt weird.) The world the books are set in is good and this book sets the scene well for the ones later in the series, I want particularly to read the story of a secondary character(Ril).

I found this book a good read and I enjoyed it but if you're looking for a story with strong male characters then it probably won't do it for you. However, the story flows well and is very entertaining, overall I would recommend the book.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A really great read! 15 Jun 2010
By Helen Hancox TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Mass Market Paperback
The back cover of my copy of 'the Battle Sylph' likens the book to the Tairen Soul series by C L Wilson. That's a good recommendation as I very much enjoyed those books and, having read 'The Battle Sylph', think that it's a valid comparison.

'The Battle Sylph' takes place in a world where a few people have 'sylphs', entities that have affiliation with various elements (earth, fire, air) and serve particular humans that they are bound to. There is also a special sylph type, a Battle Sylph, that is a fearsome fighter but is known for its rage against its master.

When the story starts it's clear that the heroine, Solie, is in danger. She is trying to avoid a marriage and sets off to visit a relative, but on the way is kidnapped by the king's men who need a virgin to sacrifice in order to bring another Battle Sylph through the portal. But Solie isn't entirely helpless and it all goes rather badly wrong - she ends up as the master of the battle sylph and they flee. They find relative safety in a community of outcasts, but how can they keep themselves safe against the Battle Sylphs of the king and other dangers.

This story is told from several different points of view. Initially I wasn't sure that I liked this method of narration but it served to allow the different plot threads to develop well and by the end I thought it worked excellently. There was a wide variety of characters whom I liked and the focus on different lead characters worked well.

What also worked excellently was the way in which the author gradually unfolded the world of the sylphs and why they behave the way they do, and particularly why battle sylphs are full of hate for their masters.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.3 out of 5 stars  55 reviews
55 of 58 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Battle Sylph 18 Feb 2010
By Kellie Chang - Published on
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Briefly, this is the first time I've written a review for a product sold by Amazon. I am not in the book industry (I still keep up a weekly romance newsletter I started while at the bookstore) though I spent a little over 21 years working for a major national bookstore chain, and during that time I was a District Romance Expert. I have been fortunate to see the Romance book genre evolve and take on new branches like Erotic Romance and Paranormal Romance (the latter sprouting the Urban Fantasy sub-genre). I've seen authors come and go and stay. All my experience in the bookselling world tells me L. J. McDonald is here to stay, so keep an eye on her, for she is an author that will not only stay but will soar.

I loved reading her debut book THE BATTLE SYLPH. The setting of the story is on an Earth-like planet inhabited by humans. There is another dimension parallel to this where the Sylphs, elemental creatures, live. There is a doorway between the two dimensions called gates. The humans have found a way to open the gates and entice a Sylph through, who then becomes a slave to the human. When a Sylph crosses the gate, it is bonded with a man--only men are allowed to bond with a Sylph, for those in power feel a woman is too weak to handle a Sylph. There are several types of Sylphs: Battle Sylphs or "warriors", Fire Sylphs, Water Sylphs, Air Sylphs and Earth Sylphs. As their name describes, they are used to fight, warm and produce light, manipulate water, air and earth. Battle Sylphs are all male. In their elemental world they are the protectors of communities called "hives" and a mate for the queens of each hive. They are naturally predisposed to hate all other males of any species, and this hatred and their supernatural strength and abilities are what are attractive to the humans.

Every Battle Sylph desires a queen and a hive of their own. The humans take advantage of this by enticing a Battle Sylph through the gate with a virgin sacrifice tied to an alter table where the gate opens. All the Battle Sylph sees is his "queen" and he cannot resist crossing the gate to her. As soon as the Battle Sylph comes through the gate, it is closed and the man who wants to bond with the Battle Sylph kills the woman and the gate closes. The Battle Sylph becomes a slave to the man who kills the girl. The man "names" the Battle Sylph and from then on the Battle Sylph has to obey him. The Battle Sylphs are told what shape to assume, a hawk, a suite of armor, a lion, etc, and they are forbidden to change or speak to anyone, including their masters and other Sylphs. Their hatred for their bonded human, the killer of their queens, is palpable, and is strong enough to physically affect anyone near them.

The king holds a ceremony to entice a Battle Sylph across the gate to bond with his son, but something goes wrong and the virgin sacrifice, a girl named Solie, doesn't get killed. Rather, it's the prince that is killed by the Battle Sylph, and Solie unwittingly names the Battle Sylph when she tries to get his attention by calling to him, "Hey, you". He is now Heyou. Solie and her Battle Sylph are on the run with the King's men and their Battle Sylphs in pursuit. Solie and Heyou find a refuge with a budding community, and life as everyone knows it is on the brink of change.

Paranormal Romance has evolved in the past few years, looking for new branches on the Paranormal tree. First there were vampires and werewolves, then other shifters, then mixtures of different creatures, then Dragons and now demons (rightly so, these guys are hot; just check out Kate Douglas' DEMONFIRE Demonfire: The Demonslayers). McDonald's innovative world in this debut book, the first in a series, is so simple yet it achieves what many authors try to reach--a back story and characters you do not see in other books--and one wonders why no one has thought of it before. Yes, elements of her Sylph world may be seen in other books and even movies, but the way McDonald treats these elements is refreshing. Her prose is fast and though not all of her characters are likable (bad guys are not meant to be liked), each one is completely fleshed out, and the ones that are the "good guys" and even some on the fence are so interesting I wish I could meet them.

Dorchester Publishing categorizes THE BATTLE SYLPH as Fantasy/Romance and RT Book Reviews has its review under Fantasy (website only). There are a few sex scenes but these are more descriptive than literal. Certainly, compared to the heat level that current romances of the day are reaching in General Romance, this book is a light weight. Personally, I'd like to see more romantic interaction between the hero and the heroine, and the sex scenes described a bit more, but that is my personal preference, and McDonald has treated the sex scenes in the book very tastefully and each one is meaningful to the story and the make up of the characters involved.

McDonald has written a solid debut book. As with any debut book there is always room for improvement, but McDonald is way ahead of the norm. Her characters and the worlds in which they live are obviously well thought out. The tantalizing glimpses of future romances and intrigues whet the reader's appetite. With this book she has made me laugh and cry. If you love Paranormal Romance and you are looking for a new branch of the sub-genre to explore, pick up THE BATTLE SYLPH. This is the type of book you dread finishing because you like the characters and their world so much you wish to live in it forever (like Avatar). McDonald with THE BATTLE SYLPH has my highest stamp of approval. I can't wait to read the next story, THE SHATTERED SYLPH (Apr. 2010)The Shattered Sylph, about Lizzie and Ril.
15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars low on romance . . . 21 April 2010
By Dee Smith - Published on
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Well if you like fantasy and women who are the boss for doing nothing but having sex, than this is the book for you. The world building was interesting and the story was different from the norm, but the characters where all so one dimensional. The battle slyph focused on having sex and protecting the "queen" and the girl focused on being boring. It held my interest though due to the world and how it worked. Don't read this for romance, read it for a different story and a different world.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A unique romantic fantasy 22 Feb 2010
By Donna - Published on
Format:Mass Market Paperback
The Battle Sylph was a unique read for me and yet at the same time it wasn't. There were elements that seemed familiar such as the summoning of the battle sylph by luring them from another world with a virginal maiden. Once summoned, the battle sylph is bonded and compelled by these bindings to obey their master's every command. This scenario I have seen several times but what makes it unique are the characters and where the story goes from time you start reading and finish it. The world building was terrific and I never once felt bogged down trying figure out or remember the different elements created.

While reading I experienced feel-good moments, a bit of humor, a lot of excitement and some sad, heart rendering scenes. This is definitely a story that gets to you on an emotional level as you follow not just fiery Solie and her randy, battle sylph Heyou but other engaging characters, whose journeys end up entwined with each other. I also like that this story was told from the different characters' point of views throughout. This story leans more towards romantic fantasy but the story surrounds the romance and the romance isn't always the main focus throughout it.

There is one little thing that kept niggling me, it was the dialogue. The story's setting is in time that was obviously long ago but the dialogue had some modern day speak in it. I'm not saying this a bad thing but while I was reading along, every now and again, a phrase would pop up and it kind of threw my rhythm in the story. It gave the story a bit of a an odd edge but didn't take away from my enjoyment.

I think The Battle Sylph was a great beginning to the Sylph trilogy. It was a fast paced, imaginative story that ended on a satisfying note but hints of things to come and few side stories that I would love to see closure on.
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars The plot had such potential... 24 Jun 2010
By Kissifur - Published on
Format:Mass Market Paperback
If you want every line of this book to be a surprise, don't read this review.

I really wanted to enjoy this book. I loved the premise - various ethereal creatures called Slyphs are called from the otherworld to serve humans with their extraordinary talents and magic. Terrifying and powerful Battle Slyphs are reserved only for those chosen by the King and require the sacrifice of a virgin to draw it through a portal so it can be bound to their new master. Unfortunately, Solie happens to be bumbling down the road after running away from home and she's kidnapped for this purpose. All hell breaks loose during the ritual and the Battle Slyth binds itself to her.

Rather than wax on and on about how retarded Solie and Heyou (the Battleslyth) are, I'm just going to wax on and on about how I'd change the story.

* Solie is running away from home because she is faced with an arranged marriage with a successful grocer whose only faults are being "old and fat". He also has the nerve to notice the gorgeous redheaded girl in town. Heavens to Betsy! While I'm all about a heroines holding out for Their One True Love, it would have gone a lot farther in making Solie less of a shallow, empty headed idiot if the guy had been like...a brutal, lecherous drunk whose pretty young wife died mysteriously 3 years before. So instead of sympathizing with her situation, I couldn't help but eye roll a bit.

* It's even harder to take the story seriously when Solie, in the midst of being sacrificed, looks up at the battleslyth about to emerge from the portal and says, "Hey you!" which he then takes as his name. Heyou. I'm not joking. Everytime I'm forced to read his name I cringe. Some authors might have been able to pull this off in a playful, tongue in cheek sort of way, but this one can't. Frankly, there's already too much silliness for it to be endearing. Heyou? God almighty.

* Solie and her constant "wailing" and "Um's", combined with her brazen silliness makes me wonder if this author is even a woman. How could a fellow XX create a heroine so vapid and worthless? She lacks any redeeming characteristic. If the author wanted to make her character more of an "every girl" than a "chosen one" at least write her as being overly serious, or shy...or fiesty and strong! Someone women can relate to! And that brings up another point - there's pretty graphic sex in here, so I'm assuming this book was intended for adult women, not 13 year olds. While I was reading this I really could not tell what kind of audience this book was meant for.

* The character development was exceptionally weak. Readers have no idea what is driving and motivating the actions of the people in the story. Far too often the author relied on people doing things just because they're nice, or just because they're evil.

Sorry, but I guess I expected more. I can't even endorse this as Fun Fluff to read by the pool. Ms. McDonald has great ideas, but the execution is absurd at best.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Decent not great. 3 Jun 2010
By Joseph Miller - Published on
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
The book starts out good and falls on its face. There is so much more than could have been done here. I felt like I was in bee class learning what bees do in the hive. Thats all this book is about. The sylphs are basically elemental yet the only ones worthy of fighting are battle slyphs?? Really? Only males can be battle sylphs the rest air/fire/water/healer are women? This book had such good potential but turned into some teen orgy then a older man young teen orgy with Mace.

Sorry but this was just not that great a book.
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