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Summary

Elfland is an intimate, sensual novel of people—both human and Aetherial—caught between duty and desire. It is a story of families, and of Rose Fox, a woman born to magic but tormented by her place in her adopted world. Led by Auberon Fox, a group of Aetherials—call them the Fair Folk, if you will—live among us, indistinguishable from humans.

Every seven years, on the Night of the Summer Stars, Lawrence Wilder, the Gatekeeper, throws open all gates to the Other World. But this time, something has gone wrong. Wilder has sealed the gates, warning of a great danger lurking in the realm beyond them. The Aetherial community is outraged. What will become of them, deprived of the home realm from which their essential life force flows?

Rose Fox and Sam Wilder are drawn to the lands beyond the gates, even as their families feud over Lawrence’s refusal to do his duty. Struggling with their own too-human urges, they discover hidden truths that draw them together in a forbidden alliance. Only by breaching the dreaded gates and daring the danger beyond can they confront that which they fear most— their otherness—and claim their birthright.

©2009 Freda Warrington (P)2014 Audible Ltd

Critic reviews

"This dreamlike, nuanced and sensual novel is reminiscent of the best of early Charles de Lint and is compulsively readable. Rose is a memorable, unique and wholly sympathetic protagonist, and the supporting cast is equally well drawn. The story of Rose and Sam is compelling, enchanting and utterly enthralling. This is simply one of the best fantasy novels of the year." (RT Book Reviews)
"Elfland... is an exhilarating, wondrous read. The scope of the imagination is breathtaking, as is Ms. Warrington’s evocative writing... a fabulous, remarkable, literary modern fairy tale. Absolutely recommended..." (Book Smugglers)
"... a distinctive spin on human/nonhuman relations in this sensuous, relationship-driven story... Solid wordplay, great pacing and a thrilling conclusion will definitely earn Warrington some new American fans." (Publishers Weekly)
"[I was] swept away in the beauty and magic of Elfland and may have shed a few tears over the wonderful, not quite fairytale ending." (Bibliosanctum)

What members say

Average customer ratings

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Good book

If you could sum up Elfland in three words, what would they be?

Must listen too

What was one of the most memorable moments of Elfland?

It was set in Leicester where I live

What three words best describe Matthew Lloyd Davies’s performance?

A bit confusing

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes but it was too long

Any additional comments?

Enjoyed the book well written but it was sometimes difficult to understand who was saying what.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

One third of a fine fantasy

For the first two thirds of the book it reads like a banal melodrama dressed up as fantasy. The gate keeper locked the gate to the other world because a great menace lurks on the other side. Everyone lives their banal little lives. the last third of the book is pretty good romantic fantasy but you do have to suffer through the first two thirds.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Robin
  • 26-05-16

Miscommunication is an obnoxious plot device

The narrator is such a talent that I dearly want to give this book 5 stars. Yet, this whole story hinges on people not talking to each other. Be it fear, anxiety, lack of maturity, or stubborn pride... characters keeping unnecessary secrets is what made this story 20 hours long. Perhaps some readers can relate enough to have patience for it. I just don't want to know what happens next.

I purchased all 3 Aetherial Tales for Matthew's narrating. I'm returning the next two.

The world building is fantastic. The way the realms fit into one another is intriguing. The lore is well done and sets up a wholly believable fantasy world.

Character development happens quickly but with enough foreshadowing to keep it from feeling too abrupt.

I want to say more good things about this, but it aggravated me more than entertained.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Angelic Beaver
  • 06-07-17

Kind of an icky story

Is there anything you would change about this book?

Reduced misery.

Any additional comments?

Pretty well written. I'm just not into stories that drag you through so much muck to get to the resolution. I was satisfied with the conclusion (and it wraps up well enough that you needn't continue), but I dread the next story, wondering what terrible things might befall the characters. There just wasn't a good balance of positive to negative, in my opinion. If you like grimy reality in your stories, it may be your cup of tea, but it isn't mine.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Sueyq
  • 04-01-15

Not what I expected but very good!

An adult read! if you are expecting a world filled with magic this is not that story. It does have hints of it though out the story but it is the underlining current. It is more about the relationships of two families who struggle with being elfin or aetherial living on the other side of a vail far from Elfland. It is a love story and a mystery with danger and excitement.

Hints of the other world but in pieces and small parts. It's a story about two families who histories are interwoven in the past and the present, who have issues with infidelity, being misunderstood and drugs. Interesting story really.

More of a modern day fairytale with in a soap opera storyline. it does suck you in with the landscape and the rich characters development and the hints of the other world of Elfland.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Anne-Lene
  • 25-12-14

Very, very good!

This is a Love Story on very many levels. I'm over 50 years old, and I can't remember any book, film or tv show, that was more exciting than this!

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Oneirae
  • 06-08-18

Fresh take on fantasy

I absolutely loved the interplay between traditional fantasy motifs and completely original concepts. This book was beautiful and magical!

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • 01-05-17

I didn't care for this book at all.

I can't get involved with the characters. they are boring. keep waiting to get interesting.