Raven Flight

Raven Flight

by Juliet Marillier

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Overview

Neryn has finally found the rebel group at Shadowfell, and now her task is to seek out the elusive Guardians, vital to her training as a Caller. These four powerful beings have been increasingly at odds with human kind, and Neryn must prove her worth to them. She desperately needs their help to use her gift without compromising herself or the cause of overthrowing the evil King Keldec.

Neryn must journey with the tough and steadfast Tali, who looks on Neryn's love for the double agent Flint as a needless vulnerability. And perhaps it is. What Flint learns from the king will change the battlefield entirely—but in whose favor, no one knows. 

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780375871979
Publisher: Random House Children's Books
Publication date: 07/08/2014
Series: Shadowfell Series , #2
Pages: 416
Sales rank: 222,367
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.10(h) x 1.00(d)
Age Range: 12 Years

About the Author

JULIET MARILLIER is the author of several highly popular fantasy novels for adults, including the Sevenwaters Trilogy and the Bridei Chronicles. She is also the author of the teen novels Wildwood Dancing and Cybele's Secret.

Read an Excerpt

As the lone traveler approached, the five Enforcers spread out in a line across his path. They waited in silence, a team of dark-cloaked warriors in full combat gear, astride their tall black horses. The fellow was roughly dressed—hooded cloak of gray felt, woolen leggings, battered old boots—and carried only a small pack and a staff. His gait was steady, though his head was bowed. He looked as if he’d been on the road awhile.

“Halt!” called Rohan Death-Blade when the traveler had come within ten paces and showed no sign of stopping. “State your name and your business in these parts!”

The man raised his head. The lower part of his face was covered by a cloth, like a crude imitation of the mask Enforcers wore on duty to conceal their identity. Above this concealment a pair of clear gray eyes gazed calmly at the interrogator. The man straightened his shoulders. “Have I been gone so long that you’ve forgotten me, Rohan?” Though harsh with exhaustion, the voice was unmistakable. They knew him before he peeled off the makeshift mask.

“Owen! By all that’s holy!” Rohan removed his own mask, swung down from his mount, and strode forward to greet their long-absent commander. The others followed, gathering around Owen Swift-Sword. “Where’s the rest of Boar Troop? We expected you long ago. When will they be here?”

“Not today.” A long pause, as if the speaker must dig deep for the strength to say more. “I must speak to the king. Straightaway. Have you a spare mount?”

“Take Fleet,” said Rohan Death-Blade. “I’ll go up behind Tallis. You’d best get yourself cleaned up before you see the king; you stink like a midden. Don’t tell me you walked all the way from Summerfort.”

“I have . . . ill news. Grave news. Keldec must hear it first.”

Something in his face and in his voice halted further questioning. They knew that look; they understood the sort of news that rendered a man thus grim and taciturn.

The king’s men mounted their horses and turned for Winterfort. Their troop leader rode with them. Nobody spoke a word.

“Up, girls!” The sharp command from the doorway was familiar now. No matter how early we woke, Tali was always up before us. She stood waiting as the four of us struggled into our clothes, tied back our hair, and straightened our bedding. When folk lived at such close quarters over a long winter, keeping everything in order became second nature.

“Hurry up, Neryn.” Regan’s second-in-command leaned against the doorframe, her tattooed arms folded, observing me as if I were a tardy recruit. “I planned to put you on the Ladder later this morning, but two young fellows have turned up at the door—Black Crow only knows how they got here through the snow—and I’ll have to test them today. So you’ll be training before breakfast. It’s the only time I can fit it in.”

My heart sank. When I’d first reached the rebel base at Shadowfell, I’d been weak. Three years on the road, living rough, moving from one place of hiding to the next, had left me undernourished, sick, and slow to trust. When I was on the run, I had not understood why the king’s men were pursuing me, only that my canny gift was more curse than blessing. Indeed, I had hardly known what that gift was. It had taken a long journey and many strange meetings before I’d learned that I was a Caller, and that my gift might be key to ending King Keldec’s rule.

My first weeks at Shadowfell had been spent resting, eating what was set before me, and having occasional visits from my fey friends Sage and Red Cap, who were lodged somewhere out on the mountain. I had not been invited to join strategic discussions or to study the various maps and charts Regan kept in the chamber where he did his planning. Everyone at Shadowfell had daily work to do, but I had not been asked to do anything except recover my strength. Regan and his rebel band had treated me as they might a very special weapon—they had concentrated on returning me to top condition as swiftly as possible.

Of recent days I had insisted on helping Fingal in the infirmary, where I could make myself useful preparing salves and tinctures, rolling bandages, and performing additional routine tasks. That freed Shadowfell’s healer for other work. Tali’s tough winter training regime resulted in a steady stream of sprains, cuts, and bruises for her brother to tend to.

And now, at last, I had been declared well enough to begin that training myself. For my canny gift, so valuable to the rebels, was not enough on its own; Regan would not allow me to work for the rebellion unless I had at least basic skills as a fighter. I would never be a warrior like Tali or Andra or the other women who shared the sleeping quarters. My years on the road had made me tough, but I was too small and slight to be much use in a fight. Still, I needed to be able to defend myself until someone could step in to help me. That was what Regan had said.

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Raven Flight 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 27 reviews.
WishEnd More than 1 year ago
I love Juliet Marillier. Her writing and characters are always so well done. The circumstances also feel realistic to me under whatever situations the characters find themselves in. She also does such a great job in her story-book world-building. That's why I continue picking up her books and giving them a try every time. I would say that this series is probably not for readers who don't really like fantasy or who read page-turners. Both of these books are rather slowly paced with some climatic points here and there. There also isn't a lot of romance. The chemistry is there when the two main characters are together, but they take a while to figure things out and when they do, they aren't together very much. I felt in some ways that there was a little more going on in this second book than in the first and it seemed to engage me a little bit more as well. Then at the same time I really wanted a lot more interaction between Neryn and Flint, which we get very little of. Of course, I'm a romantic, so I wanted a little more of that same chemistry from the first book. I still like where this story is going and the characters. I do have to say that I wish Neryn would have been a little stronger and more willing to depend on the Good Folk when she needed to. She doesn't stand up to Tali much when I think she really should have as well. Tali also got on my nerves with all her talk of focusing only on the fight against the king and being rude to Neryn. I just think when life is short, you should live while you can when you can. I also didn't like how little faith she had in the Good Folk when they had already proven themselves so many times. I think Flint was probably the character I liked the most even though he is pretty tortured and we don't see a lot of him. There is a part towards the end that really shocked me. I just didn't think the author would do what she did. There is also a great set-up for the third book. I'm really looking forward to seeing Flint around a lot more in the third book. I think the next book is probably going to be much more intense, if it is the final book in the series. There is a battle to wage and tasks to complete. Fans of Juliet Marrilier should enjoy this book, as well as Fantasy readers who like a slower paced book and not much romance. Here are a couple of excerpts that I liked: "Another man might have taken vengeance in blood and fire, or made an end of himself. Regan is stronger thatn that. There's a light shining in him, moving him forward: the light of freedom. That's what draws all of us to follow, to take risks, to keep on fighting when we see out comrades fall beside us. But there's no light without shadow." "Let there be a time in the future, I prayed, when he laughs with his children, and plays on the shore with them, and spends all his nights in loving arms. Let us have that. To whom I was praying I did not know." Content: Some mild violence and innuendo, but I would consider this clean. Source: Library
Bookwormarts9 More than 1 year ago
I have always love Juliet Marillier's books and I love how this series takes the Fey and has them fight along side the humans instead of playing with the humans like in the Sevenwaters series. The tempo of the book is a little uneven, faster in some places and slower in others, but by doing that the author makes the reader feel the urgency as well as the slow pace at which the characters are forced to go.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Steadiy held my attention. Sevenwaters series has been great thru whold series. Description of nature makes it feel as though im there
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
One of the best so far
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It was so cold. The wind shook and screamed as Tali and I screamed for help. We were stranded on a skerry and nothing was avaliable. I went into a coughing fit much like the one i had last autumn. "Neryn, try to go to sleep." Tali said. She eyed my growing stomach. "You better pray that the wee thing is a girl and not a boy or else Keldec will kill you all." I thought of the horror and sorrow Flint and i had felt when the Hag of the Isles guessed i was with child. The small spark of joy in me was that i was carrying a part of my man in me but mainly horror because even though we were careful that night we spent in each others arms apparently the needy moments of passion that we had restrained had escaped to create a joy that could be used as a weapon. I swayed on my feet against the wind and from hunger. "Neryn! Tali!" A faint voice rose through the howling wind. Unfamiliar fire sparked in my heart along with hope and clashed together. It was Flint. A figure came at me and sheilded me from the wind. "I thought i was going to lose you." His gruff yet kind voice raised my spirits . My world spun as another fit of coughing came on and i fell to my knees. "Neryn! Oh gods, will she be okay?" Tali cried. "We all will be as soon as she gets off here." Flint helped me to my feet and let me lean on him and Tali to support me between them. I felt myself being carried and everything went black. I woke to worried voices. "She shouldn't have to carry this burden it's one she can't get rid of. An innocent child turned against it's own parents would break her. Especially if it dies. And it was my fault." Flint said. "Well, glad to see your awake. We almost lost you to the gods." A cheery voice said. A plain but kindly looking older woman hovered with a warm cloth. "I'd say she might have two weeks left before the wee one arrives. Awfully early though. Can't have more than three months on her." The woman called over her shoulder. Flint looked up and some color returned to his face. "Best if you all stayed until she goes." "I'm Callista by the way deary." She said. One look at Flint's face said it all. Callista and Tali went out. He took my face in his hands and kissed me carefully. Tears ran down my face. "I don't want to lose it. I can't." I sobbed. "It's a boy." Flint said shakily. "Callista knows me and knows your story. I trust her." He said. "She wants to try to force early labor for you." "She doesn't want me inside you though. She needs her dog to do that." As if on cue a small dog trotted in. I pulled up the hem of my nightgown and spread my legs. Flint held my hand. With the other i took the dog and fit his wet point in me. I pushed him further into me until a sharp pain overcame me. I pushed the dog off the bed. "Neryn, it's time." Callista called. Flint went out. Within 2 hours a sharp wail cut through the heavy silence. Callista placed a small strong squalling baby boy in my arms. I touched my nose to his nose and sobbed. Tali rushed in. "Neryn. He will survive." She said. Then Flint stood by me and lifted the child from my arms to hold him in the sunlight. "He is strong, a warrior. The name Owen will suit him dear one." He said softly. I managed a smile through my tears. We left at dawn. Flint and Tali both insisted on bringing a farm horse for me to ride with Owen. We encountered trouble soon after we left. We were questioned by a few Enforcers.
SmalltownSR More than 1 year ago
Another fantastic Marillier story.  I loved it.  
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Okay. Have fun.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I posted it... o.o Look under my most recent stuff. My names means Warrior Princess/Assassin. o.o l kelllll buuggieessss. And food. ^~^ Num. What does thy bae say about me?
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It's okay.. l guess... and, no.. Probably never again..
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Why? D:
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I'm tired. G'night. :)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
You already mated with me!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
As an actual review, I post that this a great read that really draws you into the plot
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
*He walks in then turns and starts walking out*
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
<>
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Eh..
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
*she appears on Scarlet's back.* Oj.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Lay there eyes not even open
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Meh?
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Leaves sadly
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Please come back!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Pads in. Looks around.