Review, Novella: “Cast in Moonlight,” Michelle Sagara

Pros: Finally! A look at where and how Kaylin started with the Hawks
Rating: 5 out of 5

Cast in Moonlight (The Chronicles of Elantra) is a novella set several years before the events of the rest of the Chronicles of Elantra. In it, Kaylin finds herself taken in by the Hawklord, who despite her age of thirteen years gives her a place in the Halls of Law attached to his Hawks–those who patrol the city and investigate crimes. She works her way into most people’s hearts without intending to. She’s (awkwardly) trying to learn the ropes of city life, and due to her unusual magical talent she ends up being a lot of help to those trying to investigate the murder of several children.

We finally get to see more of Caitlin, the sort-of den mother for the Hawks, as she gets Kaylin settled into her new life. An attempt on Kaylin’s life while in the presence of Caitlin marks her importance even further. We also see the first stirrings of Kaylin’s desire to learn the languages of the city, and we see her ability to heal others’ injuries. She hasn’t yet developed her relationships with the Foundling Halls and the Midwives’ Guild–actually, it would be lovely to read another novella that covered that part of her life. We also meet Teela, Tain, and Clint, and see how it is they came to consider Kaylin part of their lives.

Since this entry into the series is set much earlier than the others, Kaylin doesn’t yet have enough knowledge of magic or of her mysterious markings for the story to get quite so windingly philosophical as it does in later volumes. Instead this entry is a bit more action-oriented and tension-filled. It was a nice interlude while reading the series.

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