Lee is a Bridge, someone whose innate magic makes it possible to connect fragmented parts of the world, Ephemera. He is also brother to the most powerful and scary Landscaper Glorianna Belladonna. Landscapers can change the world and Glorianna can change the world with a mere thought. Her great power enabled her to imprison the Eater of the World in a landscape of her making, but at great expense to her soul. Now Lee is conflicted about how he feels about his sister. But when he is attacked out on his rounds by evil wizards bent on finding their way to Belladonna, he doesn’t hesitate. With his magic, he cuts his ties to his sister and sends himself far away to protect her at all costs. Where he ends up is Vision, a city that has no knowledge of evil wizards so it is ripe for corruption by those wizards. Blinded and drugged by the wizards who captured him, he is locked away in an Asylum. There he meets a Shaman and a special girl, Zhahar with an enormous secret. Will Lee be strong enough to help the people at the Asylum as well as the people of Vision or will he be remain blinded to his true calling?
I am a big fan of the Black Jewels series. In my opinion, Ms. Bishop is a masterful storyteller based on that series alone. Somehow, though, I didn’t read Sebastian and Belladonna, the first two books in the Ephemera series. Ms. Bishop’s talent made it possible for this reader to open up Bridge of Dreams and fall right into the story. I can honestly say that it was only a slight problem that I hadn’t read the first two books in the series. Any time that I was confused, the characters made it very easy to figure out what was going on. This is an imaginative world that Ms. Bishop has created. Ephemera is a world torn apart by magic. Bridges and Landscapers are special people who work with the world, are part of the Light. As with the Black Jewels series there is another side to the coin: dark wizards who spread chaos and death wherever they can. There are wonderful messages of acceptance and looking beyond the surface to see what a person is really like. Pacing wise, things moved at a good clip up until about three-fourths of the way through and then seemed to slow down. But I muscled past it and I must say, all in all, I liked my time with Lee, Belladonna, and the rest. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend the Ephemera series to anyone who enjoys unique fantasy books with characters you can admire.
When wizards threaten Glorianna Belladonna and her work to keep Ephemera balanced, her brother Lee sacrifices himself in order to save her-and ends up an asylum inmate in the city of Vision.
But a darkness is spreading through Vision, perplexing the Shamans who protect it. And Lee is the only one who can shed any light on its mysteries...