The Pearl (Elearah Chronicles #1)


FANTASY:  “The Pearl” by Sandra Martinez is a fantasy tale set against the background of ancient China. Vampires, mermaids, dragons, gods and goddesses all populate this fictional world. The tale is a road saga, with the group traveling to the Spirit Mountains.  Elearnah, the central character, has the essence of a new goddess inside of her. Balian is Elearah’s father and fellow traveler Mika rounds out the group as the guide.

An immediate attraction develops between Elearnah and Mika as they travel toward the sanctuary of the Spirit Mountains. Mika is aware that the daughter and father he’s escorting may be more than they let on. Many adventures and dangers await them as the attraction between Mika and Elearnah increases with each step.


“The Pearl” feels familiar in some ways with mythical creatures more common to Greek myths and fairy tales. The road saga is reminiscent of J.R.R. Tolkien tales. The originality comes from taking these elements and setting the tale in ancient China. The story, while inventive, is at times confusing with the multitude of characters and the separate entities living inside some of those characters. Often it is hard to know who is speaking. Ms. Martinez' novel would read like a middle-grade book, if it were not for the sensual nature of the relationship between Mike and Elearnah. 


Overall, it is an entertaining tale, but the use of tenses and word choice kept the reader from truly experiencing the action.


Morgan Stamm