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Healer's Touch by [Howell, Deb E]
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Length: 368 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Product description

Product Description

Llew has a gift. Her body heals itself from any injury - but at a cost to anyone nearby.

In a country fearful of magic, freeing yourself from the hangman's noose by wielding forbidden power brings dangers of its own. After dying and coming back, Llew drops from the gallows into the hands of Jonas: the man carrying the knife with the power to kill her - permanently.

The last of his warrior race, Jonas is haunted by memories of his loved ones. At his side, the cursed knife that took their lives acts as a cruel reminder of his pain. Jonas has learned the hard way that caring for others means their death.

Jealous of his half-brother's celebrated strength and speed, Braph has created the device that gives him the power to perform magic, any magic. But it needs fuel - the blood of a healer...

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1511 KB
  • Print Length: 368 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 190984506X
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Kristell Ink, Grimbold Books (20 June 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Australia Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Screen Reader: Supported
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #167,000 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) (May include reviews from Early Reviewer Rewards Program) 4.2 out of 5 stars 208 reviews
15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Read! 9 April 2013
By Book Lover - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This was a delightful cross genre book, being a mixture of high fantasy, steampunk and horror, with a dash of romance thrown in. Llew is a great character who grows throughout the book. At the start, she doesn't know what she is and finding out is something she finds hard to deal with. Jonas thinks he knows how his life is mapped out and who his enemies are, but he doesn't always get it right. The supporting characters are also interesting in their own right. I like that no one is totally evil, or totally good. Even the bad guy seems to have a place where it is possible for the reader to feel a certain amount of sympathy for him. Nicely done.

The world construction was well thought out will differing flora for different continents. I particularly like the certain tree, but can't elaborate as that would be a spoiler. I had imagined the Wild West aspect of the book would put me off as I do happen to live in cowboy country, but it was not intrusive and very well handled. This is a very unique and original world.

I see there has been threads left unanswered at the end of the book that will lead nicely into the second book of the series. I will be looking forward to reading this.
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars You want an adventure? This book delivers! 18 August 2013
By Amazon Customer - Published on
Verified Purchase
Healer's Touch is the story of Llew, a young pickpocket living on the streets of Cheer. Whilst Llew is already a pretty kickass young woman, she comes with an ability that is more than it seems.

Llew is a healer, but for her to heal, something else dies. Plants and grass are her beginning tools for healing, but as her adventure progresses, so does the need for more powerful sacrifices.

I love the concept of this book, and Llew is the perfect MC to carry it out. Howell has created a fantastic Western fantasy world (complete with awesome name - Aghacia) with amazing mythological elements. Some of the bits I loved most about this book were the explanation and history of this world, the wars that had been fought, the powers that had been abused and the prejudices that had come about.

I liked Jonas, though he sometimes really annoyed me. One of my favourite characters was Anya, because she was the pinnacle of everything that Llew had never known. It was a glimpse into the world of the upper class, and provided a rich setting to contrast the stark wilderness the group travelled through. Cassidy was a favourite also.

I really enjoyed the first third of this book, when Llew is by herself and the rules of her healing are explained. I loved seeing how independent she was and how she lived by herself with no one to defend her. The middle of this book lost me a little, but the end made up for it completely, and I was glued to every page. Some very cool, but very creepy, little inventions come to pass which made for a very good visual in my mind's eye. I loved Llew's inner strength in the last few chapters; it added to her character even more.

The writing was strong, without too much telling without showing and vice versa. It was easy to picture their surroundings, fashions, looks and landscape, which I find I struggle with a lot with some authors.

Needless to say, I'm pretty keen for the sequel, Warrior's Touch. HT left it on a rather forbidding note and I can't wait to see how it progresses.

I'd recommend this for anyone who enjoys strong characters, original inventions, alternate fantasy and beautiful settings.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This Book is Deep - Could Be Discussed in Classrooms 12 February 2014
By Empathy - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Up for discussion, the many metaphors/topics:
The suppression of women
Controlling Monarchs/Powers that Be
The Caste System
The suppression of the poor and disenfranchised
The two class American society (poor vs. the rich)
Gender roles and identity
Violence against the powerless, namely women and children
Kindness and generosity of strangers
Love in a hopeless place
The audacity of hope (to quote someone famous)
The seeming randomness and purposefulness of death
Self care
Self preservation
Vampirism/draining others of life
and many more

I won't spoil it for you, but this book is deep. Before downloading the book, I almost didn't because of the mention of rape in some of the reviews, but looking at the book from a tool to empower others with knowledge, I am grateful for this author's use of creativity. Rape is what villages and societies did back in the day. There was no television, or Internet, to provide a release. There will always be power hungry people. Let's just hope history doesn't repeat itself in the suppression of women. This could be any primitive country today where women are suppressed, countries in the Middle East come to mind, and America during times of slavery when plantation "masters" would impregnate their slaves as a way to control them. I am deeply grateful for this work. I wonder if the author had education and empowerment in mind when she wrote this book. Hm . . . Regardless - this is an amazingly awesome book.

Just a brief note: British English is used, well New Zealand English is used, not American English.
4.0 out of 5 stars Intriguing plot 29 December 2014
By Amazon Customer - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I am reading this book for the second time.

Is the writing perfect? No it's not. There are some grammar mistakes (not counting dialogue, just in the regular writing) and a couple of typos. It's not so horribly awful that I'm jarred out of the story.

I like the story a lot. The protagonist is an orphaned young woman who does what she needs to do to to make it through, but she's not a b****, which is a mistake that a lot of people make when trying to write a strong female protagonist. She is a very likeable person, doesn't make stupid mistakes that leave me tearing my hair out, and I find myself sucked into the story and worrying about her.

The romance between Jonas and Llew isn't really all that great - they hate each other and then the next thing you know they are sleeping together. The transition isn't very smooth, but I like how the two of them are together.

My only complaint for this novel is that it's not complete in itself - there's a sequel coming (I assume) to finish the story, or it just leaves at a cliffhanger. Having this book be longer wouldn't be a tragedy at all.

And just a trigger warning, there is sexual and physical violence toward women in this novel. The author handled it tastefully, in my opinion, but some people might want to know it's there.

Worth reading more than once, and waiting for the next installment.
4.0 out of 5 stars Fantasy and Steampunk, they meld together in this one. 7 March 2014
By K. L. Phan - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
[ TL;DR - I'd pay to read the other books, worth a read if you like fantasy, medieval type setting, a little dabble into Steam punk technology, and a damsel who would rather be a boy than a girl. ]

For a freebie book (got it while it was free), I hadn't expected much. I've been through several freebie books with promising summaries only to realize they're first person. Having grown up on Anne McCaffrey, I can say I really don't like first person. Much less first person, present tense in some cases these days. However Healer's Touch, by Deb Howell, delivers a wonderful story in the traditional third person, past tense, story book style of writing. The POV is done from three main characters.

We start out learning about Llewella, a girl who was forced to dress like a boy because she reminded her father too much of her mother and he wanted a boy, not a girl, since he was the blacksmith. She learned about smithy practices rather than skills most girls her age are taught. When he disappears one day, she's forced to live on her own in a world where women aren't permitted property rights. The smithy is taken away from her, she abandons her home because of people giving her the wrong sort of attention now that she's a girl on her own, and becomes a little thief on the streets.

She's not necessary an innocent by the time we find her in the book; she's lived on the streets for some time and has sacrificed her virtue for safety. Her relationship with men is caustic, thinking men will only offer something they have for what's between her legs. Llew, easier to pass by as "Lou", finds herself in one unfortunate event after another at the beginning of the book. The author's way of introducing her power of healing to the reader. Llew can siphon energy from all living things into her body to heal damage done to her. However she's not skilled enough to stop herself and ends up killing an old man who tried to rape her. She's later reported to the Farry (town guard) that she killed someone (the wrong person) by a "friend", Kynas, who was trying to save his own skin.

The book harps on the fact women are subjects and it's rare to see a female criminal. She's dressed in a skirt and blouse, then hung, only to resurrect herself off the energy of flies, carrion birds, and other such lifeforms that tried to consume her dead body. Unfortunately, the process happened in the middle of a very public area and caused a scene. People were terrified of her as she ran through them, shucking off clothes to don over sized male clothes to make it easier to get away.

We're introduced to the party she'll travel with shortly after this adventure and learn she's not just an Aneuk, but a Syaneuk - a powerful, rare type of healer that no one would stop to possess for various reasons.

It's a very interesting book with flashes of steam punk contraptions in the way of spiderbots siphoning blood to convert them into power gems and metal bracelets used to harness these gems to throw bolts of electricity. Less emphasis on the steam punk contraptions though in comparison to knives, arrows, and swordplay. This IS a fantasy book with traces of steam punk, just not as much as I'll expect to see in the following books.

The reader is coaxed along with bits of vital information about what a Syaneuk is, why the Immortals were divided into two races, and why her mother is held captive in another city: she's also a Syaneuk.

There are a few problems in the book where the author sort of trudges along and skips over some vital clues to give the reader a sense of "what the heck is going on". A few times I was distracted by the overuse of a misspelled word and occasional run on sentence. With a little more editing, this book could be polished if attention was directed towards proper subject focus and sentence arrangement. There are several instances where Howell chances her POV from Jonas to Omniscient Narrator and then back. That said, she does it far less often than most freebie books I've seen.

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