Tianiichan's Rec of the Week: 4/25 - 5/1

April 25, 2011

Maledictum Magae by bexi21
Review by Tianiichan

Rating: M
Genre: Mystery/Angst
Characters: Edward/Bella

Summary: The curse happened in 1692.For over 300 years, Isabella Swan has lived alone, afraid to be close to anyone again.But when she finally meets someone who captures her heart, the unthinkable happens, leaving her in a kind of danger she never thought possible

Maledictum Magae is a story that I've seen mentioned a few times by various people throughout various days, and it is that reason I pulled the story up and prepared to read. I didn't though, for the longest time, and if you were to ask me why I didn't read it then and there. . .well, I wouldn't be able to tell you. Or, at least, I wouldn't be able to give you a good reason. The moment that I finally did sit down to read it. . .I was hooked. The reasons why are many and probably more than I could tell you here. I'll try, though.

The story itself is original to a fault, gripping to no end, and beautifully told. The prologue delivers questions riddled with an eerie sense of foreboding. It is the readers first glimpse of Bella as she's searching for something. . .digging, clawing her way to find it. However, when she does, it takes her by complete surprise.

Chapter one jumps back in time, 1692 to be exact, right into Salem Village – during the public hanging of a group of witches. It should be mentioned that the title of the story itself roughly translates to “The Witches Curse,” so it is safe to assume that perhaps Bella might be involved with a witch. . .cursed by a witch. . .or that perhaps. . .she is a witch, herself.

It is in this chapter that we meet our first Cullen, Dr. Carlisle Cullen. However, Isabella, as she was known in that day and time, doesn't seem very fond of him or his knowing, golden eyes. This chapter is also both our “hello” and “goodbye” to a certain raven-haired, petite beauty named Alice. For it is revealed here that Mary Alice Brandon met her death that day, in the form of hangman's noose. Don't let yourself be fooled, however – Alice is never to be ignored, alive or dead.

The next chapter moves back to 2004 and we find Bella enrolled as a student at Washington State University. She's made friends, found a job to keep herself busy, and, of course, an amber-eyed, cinnamon-haired young man to ogle. Edward seems to pop up in front of her, seemingly out of thin air, and Bella is fascinated by him. That she finds him more than attractive is only a part of the draw she feels to him, but, luckily for our her, she doesn't have to wait long for him to make his move. . .right into her favorite chair in the library.

Then there are Bella's memories that come to her in the form of nightmares.

There's a house in the distance. Its crooked windows and broken stairs make her scream inside. She knew this house when it was alive. Now it only resembled death. She sees the reflection of fog behind her. Its thick surging smoke chases after her, wanting to claim her for its own – a specter of the night.

She turns. There's a figure nearby. Its black mass darts in and out of the woods, hiding behind the obsidian trees. Its too fast and she has no where to go.

Heart pounding, the whispers grow louder. She sees the black shapeless form pass before her eyes once more.

A ghost.

A demon.

The figure comes forward, no longer a mere shadow. It stares back at her – eyes the color of blood, hair the texture of crows wings, sharp teeth dripping with clear liquid.

A vampire.

And Edward's eyes that remind her of a life she doesn't want to remember. To top it all off, there's the murder of two hikers in nearby Forks, Washington. . .of which Bella decides to investigate for herself. And then, as if all of that weren't enough. . .there's Tuesday.

Bella stood by her door, watching him leave and feeling a deep ache within her gut with each step he took away from her. When she closed the door, she let her body lean up against it, her mind running back through everything that had just happened.

Today was Tuesday. It was the day that vampires had re-entered her life.

The story is remarkable. Bexi21 weaves an intricate tale and leaves you wanting more each and every chapter. The writing is crisp, precise, and during the flashbacks, the dialogue is true to the age in which it was set. Period piece, present day piece, alternate universe and supernatural all wrapped into one – very coolly titled – package. Trust me when I say, this isn't a story to be passed over.


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