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Reviewed by Ankita Shukla for Readers' Favorite
In The Strangest Woman: The Past and Passed By, written by Lydia R. Outland, Kyana avoided humans like the plague. Hiding in the deepest forests, she hunted animals for food and reminisced over the old times. One fateful day, unknowingly she saved the life of the king of Neira kingdom. During this fight, she got a deep gash on the side of her stomach. The grateful king, Damian Lystad, took her to Castle Lyist to cure her wound. The moment she gained consciousness, she wanted to leave the castle and go back to the safety of the deep forests. This, however, was not meant to be. Days went by and she made connections with the knights, handmaidens, and the king himself. Eventually, they became an important part of her life. Nevertheless, she could not stay there forever. So, as soon as she regained her strength, she left the castle. Destiny intervened once again when Kyana saw an infamous "Faithful" leading an attack on Castle Lyist. Despite her logical brain begging her to stay out of it, she surrendered to her heart and paid a heavy price.
The Strangest Woman begins with a king comforting his young prince in the midst of a heavy storm. He recollects the past when dragons filled the grounds and the skies. Magic resided in these dragons. Many people devoted their lives to caring for them. These were curious people, interested in magic and devoted to a particular dragon or a specific family of dragons. They were called Faithfuls. What followed was a horrifying tale of fear and slaughter. Faithful is not the only concept that Lydia R. Outland has introduced. In fact, the terminologies spanned from faithful, hirelings to fictional historical events like the First War and the First Peace. This is a clever trick of building the authenticity of the plot. Instead of bombarding readers with names, events, and terms, Lydia R. Outland planted the seed of curiosity in readers slowly by mentioning one significant piece of information at a time. This way, the audience not only comprehended the plot better but also remembered the backstory more easily. The author has also created believable side characters. In fact, dare I say, some of the side characters, like Ira, were unforgettable. With a hint of romance, a gripping storyline, and edge-of-the-seat action, The Strangest Woman by Lydia R. Outland has all the right ingredients to be a bestseller.