Goldfield Forest

Fiction - Fantasy - General
252 Pages
Reviewed on (not set)
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

Written in a variety of genres, Black’s character driven stories rarely turn out quite the way the reader would expect. The author combines imagination and experience to weave dramatic plots with believable characters in descriptive settings, whether contemporary or supernatural.

Her fascination with the paranormal is often seen in her prose. Even when it isn’t the basis of the plot, it is not unusual to find a touch of the supernatural in the storyline. The author also includes a four-legged character in most of her books, even if it’s just a cameo appearance.

Black lives in the United States with her husband, and two alien creatures disguised as cats. While each of the furry critters is unique, one of them is rumored to be ET’s second cousin. The
rumor, however, has not been confirmed.

    Book Review

Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers' Favorite

Goldfield Forest is a work of fiction penned by author Karen Black in the fantasy, adventure, and historical fiction subgenres. The work is best suited to the general adult reading audience. Readers are introduced to a mystical tale of ancient curses, supernatural wars, and the quest for power. When an archaeologist's life is saved by a mystical clan of lion people in the Amazon jungle, it sets off a series of events that draw Maria, a guardian of the fae, into a supernatural conflict. Lena, a mystical lioness, seeks Maria's help to return home after centuries away. Meanwhile, Bagrim, a warlock, plans to seize control of the jungle by defeating Malacia and the lion people. As Bagrim's army of goblins prepares to attack Goldfield Forest and capture Lena, the fae residents must rally to defend their home. Separated from the dragon king, Malacia, Lena's strength alone is not enough to thwart Bagrim's plans. The fate of the fae hangs in the balance as they face off against dark forces seeking dominion over their world.

Author Karen Black puts every ounce of imagination into crafting a narrative filled with intrigue, suspense, and fantastical creatures, keeping readers eagerly flipping pages through fantastical settings to discover the fate of these highly lovable characters. The dynamic interplay between the characters is palpable right from the start, with strong dialogue development that gives everyone you meet a truly unique voice. This characterization injects so much energy, passion, and emotion into the tale, and it also helps to move the plot along and introduce us to this well-built fantasy concept in a natural fashion. When you add the atmospheric lexical choices, vivid descriptions, and imaginative plot, the result is a truly enchanting journey into a world where ancient prophecies and magical beings collide in a battle for survival and supremacy. Overall, I would not hesitate to recommend Goldfield Forest as a captivating experience immersed in a richly imagined world of magic and fantasy.

Jamie Michele

Karen Black's fantasy epic Goldfield Forest begins with the summoning of an Amazonian lion clan to aid an archaeologist. The aftermath carries through for hundreds of years and is once again brought to the forefront when a cursed lioness by the name of Lena makes a return, fostered by the fae guardian named Maria. As a treasure trove of flora, fauna, fae, and fantastical forces, Goldfield Forest finds itself on the brink of a siege when a goblin army, spearheaded by Bagrim, determines that it is time to take full possession. The lioness Lena, Malacai, and all those who are able have no choice but to stand up in defense of their forest home. A loss to Bagrim is unthinkable, but so too is how many might be lost in the fight to save the fae from complete subjugation.

One aspect of Karen Black's Goldfield Forest that really stands out is the way she writes, tying together all the various plot points in an enormously enjoyable and pleasingly tidy finish. Although I understand that this is just the gateway to the series, I was not left feeling like I was left hanging, which is something I appreciate. The novel is extremely ambitious given the timespan, even though it is parceled incrementally, and the sheer volume of fae incorporated into the story. The amount of different species means that in addition to the full social hierarchy of the forest being meted out, the individual worlds within its biosphere are also developed. My brain kept taking me back to childhood memories of the Diana Young story FernGully, although the conceptual structure that Black creates is a lot more sophisticated. The marriage of fantasy, mythology, and eco-thrills is perfect. Looking forward to where Black takes us next.

Asher Syed

In Goldfield Forest by Karen Black, an elf's plea leads a mystical lion clan in the Amazon to rescue an archaeologist, catalyzing a series of events that pull Maria, a Fae guardian, into a supernatural conflict. Lena, a lioness, is absent from her Amazonian home and is believed by her enemies to remain there under an elven illusion. Hindered by a curse, Lena requires Maria's escort back. After centuries, they unite in Goldfield Forest. Meanwhile, Bagrim aims to seize the jungle, prompting an assault on Goldfield. Vital medicinal plants, exclusive to the Amazon, are essential for supernatural ailments. The jungle, guarded by Malacai and Lena, must be defended. While Goldfield's inhabitants prepare for defense, Bagrim and his forces await battle in the Amazon, a victory granting control over all Fae.

“...for centuries, she has been lost outside of the Amazon. Her inability to return to life in our jungle deprived her of her home and her family...” There is a scene in Goldfield Forest by Karen Black where the Fae clan leaders come together for a meeting to strategize against their common enemy. It is a perfect example of Black's ability to combine the creative use of magical abilities possessed by different beings and move into world-building as they prepare for battle against the goblins. From fairies, pixies, and wood nymphs to gargoyles, elves, and so much more, their ideas and strengths are fantastically described and imagined. I loved Black's portrayal of rainforest settings filled with diverse wildlife. It felt so immersive and opened up a truly lush and vibrant environment with textured, detailed descriptions of the sounds and sights. The writing is comfortable enough for readers who might be new to the genre and substantive enough for those who are more seasoned. Overall, this is an exceptional launchpad for the promised series. Very highly recommended.