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#1: Auralia's Colors: The Red Strand

WaterBrook / 2007 / Paperback

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Product Description

When thieves find an abandoned child lying in a monster's footprint, they have no idea that their wilderness discovery will change the course of history.

Cloaked in mystery, Auralia grows up among criminals outside the walls of House Abascar, where vicious beastmen lurk in shadow. There, she discovers an unsettling-and forbidden-talent for crafting colors that enchant all who behold them, including Abascar's hard-hearted king, an exiled wizard, and a prince who keeps dangerous secrets.

Auralia's gift opens doors from the palace to the dungeons, setting the stage for violent and miraculous change in the great houses of the Expanse.

Product Information

Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 336
Vendor: WaterBrook
Publication Date: 2007
Dimensions: 8.25 X 5.50 (inches)
ISBN: 1400072522
ISBN-13: 9781400072521
Availability: In Stock
Series: Auralia Thread

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Publisher's Description

When thieves find an abandoned child lying in a monster’s footprint, they have no idea that their wilderness discovery will change the course of history.
 
Cloaked in mystery, Auralia grows up among criminals outside the walls of House Abascar, where vicious beastmen lurk in shadow. There, she discovers an unsettling–and forbidden–talent for crafting colors that enchant all who behold them, including Abascar’s hard-hearted king, an exiled wizard, and a prince who keeps dangerous secrets.
 
Auralia’s gift opens doors from the palace to the dungeons, setting the stage for violent and miraculous change in the great houses of the Expanse.
 
Auralia’s Colors weaves literary fantasy together with poetic prose, a suspenseful plot, adrenaline-rush action, and unpredictable characters sure to enthrall ambitious imaginations.

Author Bio

Jeffrey Overstreet lives in two worlds. By day, he writes about movies at LookingCloser.org and in notable publications like Christianity Today, Paste, and Image. His adventures in cinema are chronicled in his book Through a Screen Darkly. By night, he composes new stories found in fictional worlds of his own. Living in Shoreline, Washington, with his wife, Anne, a poet, he is a senior staff writer for Response Magazine at Seattle Pacific University. Auralia’s Colors is his first novel.
.

Endorsements

“Overstreet paints vividly imagined scenes and develops his characters and story with thought-provoking insights into human motivations.” — CBA Retailers+Resources

“[Overstreet weaves] a story filled with an intriguing plot; vivid characters; and, most importantly, imagination.” — Church Libraries

“Overstreet writes gorgeous and gritty fantasy that leaves us wanting more.”—Youth Worker Journal

“If you’re a fan of fantasy such as Lord of the Rings or J.R.R. Tolkien, than you'll love Auralia's Colors, an awesome tale for young and old alike.” — The Midwest Book Review

Publisher's Weekly

Film critic and author Overstreet (Through a Screen Darkly ) offers a powerful myth for his first foray into fiction. The kingdom of Abascar is cloaked in gloom, sentenced to an ongoing "wintering" by a jealous queen, in which colors have been done away with and are only allowed in the royal court. But young Auralia, found as a baby by the river and raised by outcasts, has a talent for finding colors everywhere and bringing them to life in a way no one has ever seen before. The fate of the kingdom rests on what Auralia chooses to do and how the king responds. Overstreet creates a world with not only its own geography but its own vocabulary-it is haunted by beastmen, home to cloudgrasper trees, vawns (something like dinosaurs) and twister fish. There are Christian bones to the story-particularly in the mystery of the beast called the Keeper, who is "always moving about, but he likes to hide just to see who'll come seeking"-which may be too obvious to some and not at all clear to others. Overstreet's writing is precise and beautiful, and the story is masterfully told. Readers will be hungry for the next installment.(Sept.) Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly (Review, 7/16)
Film critic and author Overstreet (Through a Screen Darkly) offers a powerful myth for his first foray into fiction. The kingdom of Abascar is cloaked in gloom, sentenced to an ongoing “wintering” by a jealous queen, in which colors have been done away with and are only allowed in the royal court. But young Auralia, found as a baby by the river and raised by outcasts, has a talent for finding colors everywhere and bringing them to life in a way no one has ever seen before. The fate of the kingdom rests on what Auralia chooses to do and how the king responds. Overstreet creates a world with not only its own geography but its own vocabulary — it is haunted by beastmen, home to cloudgrasper trees, vawns (something like dinosaurs) and twister fish. ... Overstreet’s writing is precise and beautiful, and the story is masterfully told. Readers will be hungry for the next installment.


“Through word, image, and color Jeffrey Overstreet has crafted a work of art. From first to final page this original fantasy is sure to draw readers in. Auralia's Colors sparkles.”
Janet Lee Carey, award-winning author of The Beast of Noor and Dragon's Keep


“Jeffrey Overstreet’s first fantasy, Auralia’s Colors, and its heroine’s cloak of wonders take their power from a vision of art that is auroral, looking to the return of beauty, and that intends to restore spirit and and mystery to the world. The book achieves its ends by the creation of a rich, complex universe and a series of dramatic, explosive events.”
Marly Youmans, author of Ingledove and The Curse of the Raven Mocker


“In Auralia’s Colors, Overstreet masterfully extends the borders of imagination. Whereas so many writers sacrifice characterization for plot or substitute weirdness for substance, Overstreet does neither. His characters are richly crafted but still recognizably human, and therefore, inhabitable. This story is wild and intricate tale, a high-octane full-throttle fantasy. Fasten your seat belts.”
Gina Ochsner, author of The Necessary Grace to Fall and People I Wanted to Be


“The late John Gardner said that a good story should unfold like a vivid and continuous dream. With Auralia's Colors, Jeffrey Overstreet has crafted just such a story, one that will leave readers ready to dream with him again.”
John Wilson, Editor, Books & Culture


“Jeffrey Overstreet weaves myth and reality, hope and loss into his tapestry, and he ties off The Red Strand with a cataclysmic flourish.”
Kathy Tyers, author of the Firebird trilogy and Shivering World


“Welcome to the land of the fangbear, the muckmoth, and the Midnight Swindler. To a story brimming with lovely literary rewards and a cast of characters by turn loathsome and hilarious, winsome and mysterious. It’s not often one gets to be present at the birth of a classic, but Auralia’s Colors is that kind of storytelling. A true delight on so many levels.”
Clint Kelly, author of the Sensations Series: Scent, Echo, and Delicacy


“In this new fantasy novel Auralia’s Colors, Jeff Overstreet weaves together a wide cast of compelling characters and an intriguing story in the setting of a world both imaginative and arresting–a world phantastic in both old and new meanings of that word.  Readers will care what happens both to the characters of the tale (all of them) as well as to the realm of Abascar itself, and will not want to put this book down.”   
Matthew Dickerson, co-author of From Homer to Harry Potter: a Handbook of Myth and Fantasy and Ents, Elves, and Eriador: the Environmental Vision of J.R.R.Tolkien

Product Reviews

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  1. 2 Stars Out Of 5
    Okay...
    March 15, 2016
    ainnirbard
    Quality: 4
    Value: 4
    Meets Expectations: 4
    Review from my blog on this book:

    Auralia's Colors is written by Jeffrey Overstreet and is the first in the series. The story is about an orphaned girl who has the gift of colors (this really confused me since everyone else could see colors). There is also the story line for the prince of the kingdom and another kingdom is mentioned. A lot of the story is hung up on the prince's mother. I'm still confused over parts of it and frustrated by some of it. I'm not sure the whole story makes sense and I don't really want to spend money on the second book for more unanswered questions. It's not that I don't mind unanswered questions in a series, but the books need to make sense and move along. This one was just difficult to get through - and I like fantasy!
  2. 3 Stars Out Of 5
    Good Writer - Boring/Confusing Plot
    April 29, 2015
    HeavenWard
    Quality: 0
    Value: 0
    Meets Expectations: 0
    This book was a little too "artsy" for my tastes. It's clear that Mr. Overstreet is a good author, as the writing itself has good dialogue and descriptions (although be warned that there are a lot of made up phrases and creature names...which I think is just fine in a fantasy setting). However, the story/plot itself was boring and confusing. Since I could tell that the author was good with words/dialogue, I kept waiting for a real story to evolve (not just a thing with colors), but it was not to be. I confess that I only made it through 75% of the book, but if it didn't keep my interest by that point, it was not worth finishing (for me, at least).

    On another note, the story did not really have anything to do with Christianity (at least, not explicitly), but on the same token, I saw nothing morally wrong in the book, either.

    Also, I think another problem I had is that I could not relate to any of the characters and really root for anyone. Overall, I will consider reading other material from this author, but I will definitely pass on anything further in this series.
  3. Hayward, CA
    Age: 45-54
    Gender: female
    1 Stars Out Of 5
    Not a good choice
    February 5, 2013
    dazfused
    Hayward, CA
    Age: 45-54
    Gender: female
    Quality: 1
    Value: 1
    Meets Expectations: 1
    My firiend bought this book. I started this book and was not impressed. If it is suppose to be a christian based book where the bible references. I told my friend don't read it she should send it back to you and complain. Not a good book or a good show on christianity like in other books I have bought from CBD.....
  4. Highland, New York
    Age: 45-54
    Gender: male
    4 Stars Out Of 5
    January 27, 2010
    the man with a plan
    Highland, New York
    Age: 45-54
    Gender: male
    This was the most interesting fantasy that I have ever read. It was as if the writer's pen was a paint brush, and was painting the book; as if the world was black and white. And when it got to the end the world was filled with colors. This is a very colorful book. I do recommend it to all fantasy readers.
  5. 4 Stars Out Of 5
    June 29, 2009
    Fantasy lover
    Auralia's Colors is a bit different of a fantasy than I am used to. It was somewhat darker than the stories I usually read. I found it in our local library and decided to try it out. the story was well written but I found the descriptions of the villains in the last chaper quite disgusting (kids may not want to read that chapter)and I definitely don't like it when a character I have come to like dies (I won't say who). But I hope that the later books in this series have a bit lighter a tone than this one. such books as this can depress me at time and afterward I must find a lighter book to read. But it is good to fight boredom or read on a rainy day.Try it. Who knows. you might like it more than I do. I just get tired of the dark tones in the movies, books, or just life in particular sometimes. I read as an escape. I preferr to escape into something wonderful and exciting. This book just didn't quite fit the bill for me.
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