The Stolen series, Book 1

Young Adult - Mythology/Fairy Tale
260 Pages
Reviewed on 07/27/2023
Buy on Amazon

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    Book Review

Reviewed by Rosie Malezer for Readers' Favorite

Stolen is the first book in The Stolen series by Marlena Frank. Shaleigh Mallet is a 16-year-old who loves to investigate old abandoned buildings with her best friend, Kaeja. Shaleigh's father is an emotionally unstable man frequently mocked by others. While visiting a tree house, Shaleigh is knocked unconscious and wakes up in a different realm, all due to a scar that appeared on her skin. Many creatures have lost their lives through a recent war in this new land, but when Shaleigh meets a giant stone lion named Mawr of Aife, he becomes her best friend and helps her in any way he can. Mawr takes Shaleigh to the next city, where she meets Madam Cloom and Teagan, the high elf. Shaleigh's scar suggests she is the reincarnation of the previous ruler of the land, Master Cathal, and she is thrust into a duel for her life. Shaleigh's survival will prove she is the new ruler. However, she only wants to return home to her father. When Talek - Teagan's former lover - appears and promises to send her home, Shaleigh is overjoyed until she learns she has not been sent to her home but to another realm yet again, this time with Teagan at her side.

I was taken by Marlena Frank's unique tale, which thrusts Shaleigh Mallet into a land of the truly bizarre. Although Stolen is the first in the series, it was quite easy to be pulled into the story and almost see the creatures take form. The writing style is so unique and gripping that the reader will quickly lose track of time while being immersed in the complexities of this enchanting new world. I loved the friendships made but found some of the laws of the land almost akin to those where I live, along with the prejudices shown to those of lesser occupations. Some people were humiliated and intimidated for no other reason but to give the abuser self-worth. This hit quite close to home for me, as a Deaf reader, but it did not make me want to stop reading. I very much enjoyed Stolen and recommend it be read by fans of fantasy tales over the age of 12 years. I look forward to the second book in The Stolen series and the adventure that awaits.