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Moondance at Stonewylde (Stonewylde Book 2) by Kit Berry Review

Hey ForeverBookers, 

How are you all? I hope you’re great!

I’ve just finished “Moondance at Stonewylde” by Kit Berry, and I really, really loved it! It’s the second book in the "Stonewyldeseries. The books have to be read in order so please read Magus of Stonewylde” (book 1) first. Here’s my review of it:

“Moondance of Stonewylde” continues the events of “Magus at Stonewylde”, where our main characters Yul and Sylvie are trying to find ways to be together, without getting in trouble with Magus or Sylvie’s mother, Miranda. Added to this, Sylvie’s Moondancing is far more prominent in this novel, as the title and cover suggests.

Sylvie and Yul start to develop deeper feelings for each other, which only incenses Magus and makes him more determined to keep them apart, no matter what the cost, even the lives of them. Magus’s brother, Clip plays a bigger role here, too. He actually helps Magus torture Sylvie to get her energy a number of times throughout the novel, without knowing what he’s doing. Does Magus succeed in silencing Yul, Sylvie and Mother Heggy from telling anyone about how tortuous and evil he actually is or do they start to plan a way to destroy him, once and for all? You’ll need to read to find out!  

“Moondance at Stonewylde” starts in late Spring and goes forward into Autumn so we have a lot of seasonal descriptions.

“October had come to Stonewylde and the leaves were changing colour.” is one of these descriptions, where in the second half of the book the season changes from Summer to Autumn.

There is violence, talk of sex, as well as rape, and persuasion in “Moondance At Stonewylde”, so I wouldn’t recommend this to anyone younger than 17 years old, as it might be triggering. 

I was reading “Moondance of Stonewylde” for a few readathons again: 🙂. 

• For Reading Rivalry, I read it for a book with a season represented on the cover because there are trees, a rabbit as well as a full moon on it. This gives me the feels of Spring, Summer and Autumn, which all take place in the book.

• For the Popsugar year long challenge, I read the book for “A book about or involving a sport” because the characters have a cricket match. There is some rivalry here between the male characters, although the cricket game isn’t a main plot point in the book. 

• For the Book Bingo for June on Facebook, the prompt I read it for was to read a book that’s set in the summer, as it goes from Spring through to Autumn, as I’ve said above. 

• For the Fae Readathon, hosted by a Facebook friend, I again read it for the magical creatures prompt because Sylvie is magical. When I say “again”, I actually started the challenge in May because I thought that’s when it started. I read the first book for this challenge last month, so it wasn’t hard to read this book for it this month. 

There are a lot of abusive elements as well as some more mature themes in “Moondance Of Stonewylde” but if you can handle abuse in books I highly suggest picking it up, as it’s a magical, brilliant story.

Spoilers Below...

“Yesterday, the summer solstice should have been a day of glory. Instead – ruined.”

is what Magus thinks about the summer solstice, when Yul took his power. This is what starts the novel, the summer solstice having happened in “Magus at Stonewylde,” book 1. Magus wanted power, which he didn’t get because Yul took it away from him. Magus is still an evil character throughout the events of “Moondance of Stonewylde.” He’s actually even worse, if that’s possible. I hated him throughout. He’s the worst villain I think I’ve ever read about, even. I think that’s because he’s so normal and ordinary sometimes but then so not good at other times. This makes this series so good, though. I love a good villain. 

“It seemed the village brat had stolen his earth magic this Solstice; Magus didn’t intend to let him steal Sylvie as well.”

This is significant because Yul, the village brat from Magus’s perspective won’t let Magus “steal” or be with Sylvie, the damsel in distress in this series, in any way. Yul has already taken Magus’s magic, he can’t have Sylvie as well, in Magus’s eyes. Throughout though as I wrote above, Sol and Sylvie still want each other, even more in “Moondance of Stonewylde,” than they did in “Solstice At Stonewylde.” This point again shows how truly evil Magus is. It also demonstrates how creepy Magus is, as does, 

“Sylvie you really are the most beautiful girl at Stonewylde.” thinking that Sylvie could one day be his. Especially as Sylvie’s mother, Miranda is pregnant with his baby. 

“And still no sign of your period?”
She looked up at him quickly.
“No, I’m never usually late. I really think I am pregnant.” 

Magus asks the question pertaining to Miranda’s cycle because he wants her to be dependant on him, and not in a good way. He wants to keep an eye on Sylvie so he suggests that Miranda and Sylvie move up to the Halls, where the Hallfolk, the people that Magus truly wants at Stonewylde, reside so that he watch them more easily. Of course Miranda, jumps at the chance to live closer to Magus, so both her and Sylvie move from their cottage, much to both Yul and Sylvie’s displeasure. 

“Now come back inside and dance with me again, my beautiful princess. I think we make a rather striking couple together, don’t you?” 

Again, this shows how manipulative Magus is. He wants a child to be with him, sexually, which is sickening, although he has already impregnated Rowan, a sixteen year old in book 1, which is legal in Stonewylde.

All Yul wants is to protect Sylvie at all costs. “He loved Sylvie but how would they ever find a chance to be together...” shows this. When Yul sees Magus treating Sylvie, like she’s nothing it gets him angry. 

“Yul was sickened by the way magus spoke as if she were nothing, just a commodity to be used.”

These quotes show Yul’s devotion to Sylvie as well, and not to other girls at Stonewylde, like Holly, who hates her because she doesn’t think she doesn’t acts like Hallfolk should. Add to this that Holly now wants Yul because Sylvie loves him and that Holly doesn’t intend to back down getting him and you have a very bitter rivalry. “...believe me, you will partner me at our Rite Of Adulthood.” is what Holly says to Yul when she realises she may not get Magus for her Rite. The italics just display how conniving Holly truly is. If she doesn’t get her way then the whole of Stonewylde hears about it, literally. Yul is planning to be with Sylvie for her Rite, as she’s younger than him. Every child has their Rite when they’re 16, in the world of Stonewylde. Sylvie is younger than Yul so he wants to remain untouched until she’s ready.

Buzz, the bully from Book 1, is still trying his damnedest to be with Sylvie. When she says “Leave me alone, Buzz! I don’t like your attitude or your values,” she means it. He’s  
in trouble with Magus, his father for being promiscuous with Sylvie and some other girls, Yul’s sister, Rosie, for example. “He’s a madman. You should banish him not me.” is Buzz’s attempt at trying to stay at Stonewylde. He’s saying that Yul is the one Magus should exclude, not him. Does he get to stay and cause even more trouble for Yul and Sylvie? You’ll have to read to find out. 

Sylvie meets Professor Siskin, a Stonewylder who lives in the outside world. “Everyone here is inter-related and Raven must have had a great deal of relations, one of whom was undoubtably your father,” is what Siskin says when Sylvie and him get chatting about Sol (the current Magus) and Clip’s mother. Raven was Sol and Clip’s mother, meaning that Sylvie is somehow related to Magus. Mother Heggy can remember Raven, as we learnt in Book 1. She stops Alwyn, Yul’s father’s abuse from book 1 by basically putting him into a coma that he won’t get out of near the beginning of “Moondance Of Stonewylde”. Alwyn severely abused Yul in book 1, and Magus tells him that although he’s now free of his father, he’s still going to be watching him and making sure he behaves. “You may be free of Alwyn now, but you’re not free of me.”

Mother Heggy has a bigger role to play in “Moondance of Stonewylde,” as she tries to stop Magus from using Sylvie to get her Moon Magic. “He’ll destroy her if you don’t stop him,” is what Mother Heggy says to Yul when he goes to see her. All Yul wants, is to stop Magus and Clip, Sol’s brother from stealing Sylvie’s power and using it for their own gain. 

Mother Heggy sees that both Sylvie and Miranda have been spellbound by Magus and Clip, when you speaks to Yul in one of their clandestine moments. “Mother and daughter both spellbound by that evil pair of half-brothers.” She sees that this isn’t fair.

“You love to dance at Mooncliffe for Magus. You want to give him your magic up on that stone. Isn’t that right, Sylvie?”

is how Clip spellbounds or hypnotises Sylvie into thinking she wants to give her power to greedy Magus. Clip is a shaman, so has special abilities. Sylvie really wants to dance for Yul at Moonrise, however she’s being told to say that she wants to dance for Magus, instead. Magus even goes so far as to get Sylvie to charge eggs that hold her power for him so that he can stay euphoric throughout the month, as Moonrise only happens once a month. She says that she enjoys it, not really knowing what she’s doing.  All of this makes her sick, though. This again demonstrates how evil and in control Magus is, in that he forces her to be at Mooncliffe, enchanting the Stone Circle as well as the eggs for him. 

Yul watches Sylvie a couple of times at Mooncliffe doing this for Magus. He’s so furious, watching the one he loves more than anything else in the world, in the thrall to an immoral man. 

“You must watch but you must be hidden,” is what Mother Heggy tells Yul before he goes to watch Magus take Sylvie’s energy. 

“He’d had to endure watching Sylvie being abused by Magus, used for the man’s own gratification, and then laughed at in her weakness.” This clearly angers Yul, as Magus is again being so evil in getting Sylvie to do any of this, just for him.

There are literally so many twists and turns in this book that I didn’t see coming (I first read this over 10 years ago, so I’d forgotten them). For example, there’s one moment to do with Maizie, Yul’s mother’s, past that completely twists the events of the story. I don’t want to mention anything more, but if you want a shocker, then please read this series! There are plenty of them!  

Can Yul and Mother Heggy stop Magus from taking Sylvie’s energy? Does Miranda really love Magus, as she says? Does Holly get to be with Yul after her threats? What happened to Maizie in the past? You’ll have to read the Stonewylde series to find out...

What did I like about “Moondance of Stonewylde”?

• I loved seeing Yul and Sylvie grow as characters and as a couple, even though their relationship is forbidden. I love the forbidden love trope so whenever I read it, I’m happy but I think the author did a great job of writing it here, especially. 

I loved ALL of the twists and turns the story took. When I felt the story was going in one direction, it suddenly changed ways and went in another. It kept surprising me throughout just like any good book should. 

• I liked how there is a clear villain in this series, or at least in the first three books. Magus is one of the most evil and manipulative villains I’ve read about, as I typed above. I just love to hate him. 

• I liked how the settings continued to be described in detail. In book 1 I noticed this also and it continues here. 

• I liked how slightly more characters got a main role in “Moondance of Stonewylde”. Our main 4 are still Yul, Sylvie, Magus and Miranda but Clip has more of a role here, as do Buzz and Holly, as well as Professor Siskin and some of Holly’s friends. 

• I liked learning more about the world of Stonewylde. The settings are very well described, as is the magic.

What didn’t I like about "Moondance of Stonewylde”?

• Just a few moments were a little slow. As this was a reread, I knew events at the end would get me interested again.

• This didn’t bother me but for some people, I think that some of the abusive scenes carried out by Magus might be too much them, as there are a lot of them, to multiple characters and they’re quite nasty. This goes for book 1 as well, though. 

Overall then, I absolutely LOVED rereading this book! It had everything I love from a sweet but forbidden romance, to an interesting setting, to an evil villain out to hurt anyone who gets in his way! 

Stand by for my next review coming soon...


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