Leofric of Longridge

A Windflower Saga Novella

Fiction - Short Story/Novela
142 Pages
Reviewed on 08/02/2018
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Author Biography

Aleksandra Layland is a retired civil engineer and federal civil servant who worked primarily for the United States Air Force as a senior installation engineering manager responsible for buildings, airfields, infrastructure, fire protection, and emergency preparedness. She also served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in the Western Caroline Islands where she helped build school classrooms and cafeterias, low income housing, and simple village water distribution systems.

    Book Review

Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers' Favorite

Leofric of Longridge is a medieval fantasy-styled novella that forms part of the Windflower Saga series, written by author Aleksandra Layland. Closely connected to the second volume, The Art of War. The Path of Peace, in this novella we get a glimpse of our hero Leofric when he was a young lad of fourteen. Aimed at both adult and young adult readers, the story introduces a simple orphan boy with no perceived future, but one whom we know will rise to incredible feats of war, leadership and a magnificent future as a hero for all time. As our story begins in Leofric’s monasterial home, we learn of the terrible trials that he faced in his formative years, understanding more and more what it takes to become a fearless leader of tomorrow.

Having read and reviewed several volumes of the Windflower Saga before, it was a delight to return to Aleksandra Layland’s ever-improving style. I’m delighted by the latest instalment, Leofric of Longridge, because the emotional connection with the character is the strongest it has ever been, and this access to backstory really cements the world together in a way that no prior volume has. That said, you can definitely also enjoy Leofric of Longridge on its own as a novella, a gateway to Layland’s complex fantasy world of kingdom politics and brutal wars. There’s plenty of tragedy and story within this novella, and I recommend it as the best addition yet to this lifelike and immersive epic fantasy saga.

Christian Sia

Leofric of Longridge: A Windflower Saga Novella by Aleksandra Layland is a unique spin on fantasy for young and adult readers. Slim as it is, this book is a gorgeous treat for fans of short stories and novellas. Meet the orphan, Leofric, the man who will have great influence and power in Kimbria. Readers are introduced to his life as a young man, a fourteen-year-old growing up in the monastery under the tutelage of brother Ermen and the other monks. What does the future hold for this young man who goes off on his birthday and leaves everyone worried?

This novella provides fans of the Windflower Saga trilogy with great backstory on one of the characters they will love. The author presents this character in an exciting way, featuring a beautiful monastic setting and focusing on relationships. Readers will enjoy the insights about the monastery, the religious atmosphere in which the young Leofric grows up, and the dynamics built around friendship, love, and duty.

Leofric of Longridge: A Windflower Saga Novella is well-written and the characters are beautifully imagined. There is a sweetness in the well-spun prose which features great descriptions. The paragraphs are well-broken down for great readability and the dramatic scenes are carefully spread out to keep the reader excited about the story. Aleksandra Layland has carefully crafted a whole universe with a unique culture around the characters, who are related to the land of fantasy called Kimbria, and this novella is another beautiful gem from that world.

Rabia Tanveer

Leofric of Longridge: A Windflower Saga Novella by Aleksandra Layland is the back story of the beloved Lord Leofric, who marries Lady Keridwen, the rightful Queen of Ansgar. Set in a time long before we meet him as a feared ruthless warlord, Leofric Longsword is just a 14-year-old young boy who aspires to be a teacher and hopes to be a monk. He has no idea what the future has planned for him, he only knows the comfort and peace of the Longridge Monastery. Orphaned and very intelligent, Leofric is looking for that inner peace that Brother Ermen and everyone else in the monastery has.

Lonely and with no one to call his own, Leofric is living his life one day at a time, along with his adopted family at this monastery. However, his respite from the dangers and the sorrows of the world is short lived and he is snatched away from peace. How will he fight the outside forces, the unknown? How will he become Lord Leofric, the most feared warlord in Ansgar if he is destined to be a monk?

I have become a fan of Aleksandra Layland. She has a way with words that just draws you right into the story and makes you one with the characters. I was breathing the same air with each breath that Leofric took and saw everything that he did. I felt his pain and his confusion. It was really entertaining reading Leofric's back story of how he became a warrior and what he was before he married Keridwen. I loved Leofric when I first met him in Of Wisdom and Valor, and I love him even more now. Brilliant! Another job well done!