Misfortune of Song (Druid’s Brooch #5)


HISTORICAL:  Set in twelfth century Ireland, Orlagh, the sheltered, naïve, slightly spoilt, but fiery granddaughter of Chief Maelan, becomes infatuated with a traveling bard and very nearly loses her innocence in the process. This serves as a wake -up call for her grandfather, who must admit he’s coddled her for too long, and that it is time for Orlagh to marry. However, the arrangement he makes on her behalf sends the impulsive, headstrong Orlagh, running away with her charismatic bard. As Maelan searches for Orlagh, he finds himself negotiating with the Fae. This development makes things trickier, and more complicated. It also reveals Orlagh’s own magical talents, which sets the stage for an epic showdown, packed with intrigue, action and adventure. 

The fierce love Maelan has for Orlagh is the undercurrent that propels this story forward. The adventures Maelan encounters in his attempts to rescue Orlagh are fascinating and imaginative. The genuine Gaelic language sprinkled throughout the story solidifies the atmosphere, and the impressive history of the locale adds a nice touch of authenticity.  The inclusion of the Fae adds a compelling side drama to the story, giving readers an interesting challenge to puzzle through. One might feel some mixed emotions about the outcome of Maelan’s interference, and Orlagh’s attitude. A bittersweet, slightly melancholy tone permeates on the road to emotional growth, which is a little disappointing.  Otherwise, this is a compelling story that expertly blends familial love with Celtic history and high fantasy.     

Julie Whiteley