2 Reviews: “The Prophecy of the Stones” by Flavia Bujor

For the love of books

Two reviews of the same book: personal and impersonal outtakes.

Review #1

… ‘Wherever there’s life … wherever there are men, there is also evil.’

~ excerpt from “Chapter 15: Fairytale” in The Prophecy of the Stones, a translation by Linda Coverdale of La prophétie des pierres by Flavia Bujor

Flavia Bujor’s debut novel can be divided into two parts.  The epic war in a magical, parallel dimension between good and evil forces and the just inhabitants’ physical as well as mental rebellion against a corrupted government are given the most attention by the author.  However, the second part of that struggle is set in modern-day Paris and enacted in an actual patient’s desperate survival through her overwhelming illness.

Joa is a fourteen year-old girl who is fatally sick.  In addition to the loss of her parents in an accident, Joa’s former life of luxury and success has been torn away from her, and she finally understands that her life is hopeless.  All she has left is a fantastic dream—a vision of three unusual girls who could not be more diverse.  They are forced to join their powers together in order to fulfill a resilient prophecy that must come to pass.  Jade, Amber, and Opal discover on the evening of their fourteenth birthdays that they were not named after three stones by accident.  They are the three Stones, magical beings each born with a respective stone and a shared Gift.  The world they live in is dominated by the ruthless Council of Twelve, a dictatorial government posing as a communistic peacemaker.  Minds are controlled telepathically by the Council of Twelve, leaving not even freedom of thought or expression.  The only part of this semi-realistic dimension which is barely untouched by this power is Fairytale, a land where “nothing is impossible.”  The three companions manage to overcome their opposition to each other’s temperament and station in life; they boldly decide to undertake the path outlined for them and try to achieve their destinies, where death, love, and hope await amid threatening evil.

The Prophecy of the Stones is very profound, and the storyline itself is complex enough to justify that the novel is for readers older than children.  Jade, Amber, and Opal share many traits with Joa’s character, a clear sign of the author’s efforts to demonstrate the parallelism of Joa’s narrative and the three Stones’ story.  Redemption, friendship, and the power of hope are the story’s prevalent themes.

king who must lead the ultimate battle against the Darkness.  His character can be compared to Christ’s in some ways, although Elyador is scorned and despised for different reasons.  On one hand, Elyador’s past history makes him a hated figure throughout Fairytale; on the other hand, it is his amnesia and lack of identity that have given him the chance to start anew and fight for the Light, earning Fairytale’s admiration and respect for his noble deeds.

Flavia Bujor’s innovative magical creatures, magical beings, and the settings themselves contribute to the mystery and depth of the prophecy, which is so crucial to the outcomes of the story and the main characters.  The girls’ different personalities add life and color to the tale, just as the impending war, incomplete prophecy, and the uncertain futures of all characters create suspense and action.  The wisdom in The Prophecy of the Stones is very thought-provoking, while the romance between several of the main characters is not banal and concentrates on love and hatred, two opposite emotions that radiate from the novel.  Fear, anger, vengeance, and despair clash with hope and forgiveness, thoroughly describing human weakness, virtue, and the fact that every person must face his/her own dual nature of good and evil.  However, the author emphasizes throughout that human life and society will never exist without the presence of both good and evil, a resounding truth.  Reality and fantasy may intertwine in Bujor’s work of fiction, but Bujor still encourages the reader to never give up hope like Joa.  After experiencing The Prophecy of the Stones, one may be convinced to believe in the impossible.

Original review: Part 1: The battle between good and evil is dramatically fought in ‘The Prophecy of the Stones’; Part 2: The battle between good and evil is dramatically fought in ‘The Prophecy of the Stones’, Examiner.com

Review #2

Back in 2004, a small fantasy novel called The Prophecy of the Stones reached American bookshelves.  One of its main attractions for me was that the original French version, entitled La Prophétie des Pierres, was written by a fourteen year-old girl named Flavia Bujor.  The first part of the novel is the epic war in a magical, parallel dimension between good and evil forces and the just inhabitants’ physical as well as mental rebellion against a corrupted government.  However, the second part of that struggle is set in modern-day Paris and enacted in an actual patient’s desperate survival through her overwhelming illness.

I noticed right away that The Prophecy of the Stones is very profound and similar to The Lord of the Rings and the Harry Potter series, the storyline complex enough to justify that the novel is for readers older than children.  Jade, Amber, and Opal share many traits with Joa’s character, a clear sign of the author’s efforts to demonstrate the parallelism of Joa’s narrative and the three Stones’ story.  Redemption, friendship, and the power of hope are the story’s prevalent themes.  For example, Elyador, the Chosen One, is a man who underwent evil trials in his life.  He has turned away from the Darkness and faced the Light again, but all his memories have been erased as a strange punishment for his desertion from evil.  This strange twist of fate helps Elyador reach his destiny—to be the temporary king of the Realm and the warrior-king who must lead the ultimate battle against the Darkness.  His character can be compared to Christ’s in some ways, although Elyador is scorned and despised for different reasons.  On one hand, Elyador’s past history makes him a hated figure throughout Fairytale (the land where “nothing is impossible”); on the other hand, it is his amnesia and lack of identity that have given him the chance to start anew and fight for the Light, earning Fairytale’s admiration and respect for his noble deeds.

The author’s innovative magical creatures, magical beings, and the settings themselves contribute to the mystery and depth of the prophecy, which is so crucial to the outcomes of the story and the main characters.  The three girls’ different personalities add life and color to the tale, just as the impending war, incomplete prophecy, and the uncertain futures of all characters create suspense and action.  The wisdom in The Prophecy of the Stones is very thought-provoking, while the romance between several of the main characters is not banal and concentrates on love and hatred, two opposite emotions that radiate from the novel.  Fear, anger, vengeance, and despair clash with hope and forgiveness, thoroughly describing human weakness, virtue, and the fact that every person must face his/her own dual nature of good and evil.  However, the author emphasizes throughout that human life and society will never exist without the presence of both good and evil, a resounding truth.  Reality and fantasy may intertwine in Bujor’s work of fiction, but she still encourages the reader to never give up hope like Joa.  I only know that I never gave up hope on The Prophecy of the Stones, because this is simply a splendid read worth making time for.

Original review: Review of “The Prophecy of the Stones”, Equus4ever.wordpress.com

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