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4.2 out of 5 stars41
4.2 out of 5 stars
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Format: PaperbackVine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
I picked this after all the students at school telling me the first in the series, Lament, was so good. It's taken me a while to get round to it though.

Unfortunately it's just not for me. I'm not keen on the genre and feel this type of thing is much more suited to the young adult reader. The pace just isn't fast enough for adult readers and I just found myself getting a little bored.

I think you definitely need to read this series in order so it makes sense. Sorry kids - I didn't enjoy this (but I enjoyed it more than Twilight!)
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on 15 July 2011
I read this book in under 7 hours and finished in the very early morning today.. I did really enjoy the novel and I really hope the next book will be much better and maybe how about including more with Luke in it! I did really like how Maggie have Dee and James write txts to each about how they feel each other I think that what I like best of the book! Can't wait for the next book to come hopefully!
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon 4 May 2011
Format: PaperbackVine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
Ballad continues the story from Lament, with James and Dee; however Dee is a secondary character now, and James, along with a new fae character Nuala, is the central character. Although I have read Lament, I think Ballad would be accessible as a stand-alone novel.

Both are now attending Thornking-Ash Academy, where some of the students are hearing the song of Cernunnos, king of the dead, and once again we meet Eleanor, the new queen of fairy, drawn to Dee, the cloverhand. Nuala feeds from the life force of artistic geniuses, which leads to their premature death, but in their short lives acts as a muse to them; it is an irony that she herself cannot (literally) play any form of music, write, or create any other form of art. She is drawn to James, the piper, as the most gifted musician at the Academy. However, James is still in love with Dee, who is troubled by her confused feelings for James and the fae Luke she met in Lament. Needless to say, Eleanor has plans for these three that aren't to their liking, and brings out the inherent conflict in their relationships in a climactic meeting at Halloween.

There's a lot of teenage angst, some mild kissing, and one attempted sexual assault, although handled very delicately. As with Lament, the fae are dark, as they should be, and the writing is very poetic at times. We feel sympathy for James and Nuala, and somewhat alienated by Dee. I greatly enjoyed Ballad, as I did Lament; however, I was bored by Shiver/Linger (too droopy), which were published later. If you liked any of Stiefvater's other novels, this should appeal; and if you haven't met her before, this is an excellent place to start.
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on 15 February 2014
aaaaahh frustration, ok I'll be honest I really didn't care whether that character lived or died near the end!!! need I say more. LOL i just didn't relate at all.

Overall I love Maggie Stiefvater stories and Ballad did not disappoint.
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on 16 August 2011
My daughter has read this and thought it was great she couldn't put it down, she has read the twilight books but these are as good but shorter so easier to read. Her other books are great too, I've them as well. (linger, forever and shiver)
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on 7 September 2012
I purchased this book for my 13yr old Granddaughter as it was part of a series she really enjoyed. I'm not sure how good the standard of writing is but the book was read along with the others in the same series.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 17 May 2011
Format: PaperbackVine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
I liked this a lot better than Lament (the first book in Maggie Stiefvater's faeries series). I feel that through Lament and this book, you can see Maggie's writing get better and better. I think Shiver and Linger are much better than this book, but as a stallwort fan of her work, I enjoyed this read nevertheless.

I really liked seeing James as the hero in this book - his rather snarky attitude was a joy to read! Nuala, the faerie who seeks to inspire and tempt him, also handed out her share of tongue lashings... great!

I have a number of minor issues though - firstly, Dee (the central character from Lament) morphed into an annoying and whiny girl who I really didn't want to hear from her at all. Luckily that was the case, but I felt it was a shame to treat her like that after she had been so enjoyable to read in Lament. I also wanted to know more about what happened to Luke, but sadly he drifted off into the ether and was only mentioned in my final grievance - the stupid text message pages. I really didn't like those simply because the text messages were in text speak. I HATE TEXT SPEAK!! By the end, it made sense to include those pages, but until then it was just irksome.

Having said all that, the actual story was great and I really enjoyed it. I guess what I wasn't a fan of was how the book linked to Lament - so if you haven't read Lament, which is not strictly necessary to understand what is going on here, then you would enjoy it more that I've made out.

The final thing I'd like to say is that Shiver and Linger by Maggie Stiefvater are just some of the most entertaining and heartfelt books I've ever read, so from that point of view, I've loved seeing how Maggie honed her craft through the early books.
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on 8 April 2014
Great read, interesting story. Kept teenager engaged for a few hours. Will be picking up further books by this author in the future.
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on 26 September 2011
Excellent book, love this Author, after finishing the first one could not wait to start this one, hopefully another will follow.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Format: PaperbackVine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
because it works unlike some sequels which just don't gel. I don't believe this is a stand alone book though so if you are interested then I would suggest buying Lament first.

We are back at Thornking Ash Music School with James the Piper, his old friend and 'love' Dee and now a Leanan Sidhe called Nuala. She has developed a deadly interest in James and if he accepts her gift of music then he must pay the price with his life. The Leanan Sidhe although Faerie are more human so Nuala finds herself falling in love with James and then cannot go through with taking his life. Dee meanwhile is still lamenting the loss of Luke and attempting to make it right by cosying up to James............big mistake.

The end of the story culminates in a battle once more this time involving Cernunnos the Celtic Deity of the Dead and the Faerie........each has the same take over and rule humankind. The race is on to save us all from obliteration to also save Nuala from her terrible and cruel fate and once again for James to come to Dee's aid.

Good writing although a bit slow to get really warmed up.
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