I have to admit, the first time I picked up this book, I didnx27;t finish it. Dart-Thorntonx27;s writing could be called over-descriptive and long-winded, if you are not in the frame of mind to appreciate it. However, on the second reading it became clear that she is an extremely intelligent writer, and though there are a lot of words to plough through, the rewards are well worth it. Her use of rich detail brings her world to life, when you read it in a receptive frame of mind. "The Ill-Made Mute" is no straightforward, bog-standard fairy tale or fantasy novel, instead it gives a tantalising glimpse into the Perilous Realm of the Fair Folk. It is not an easy read, but once drawn into the world, like the world of the Faeran, you wonx27;t want to leave. Comparisons with Tolkien are inaccurate, however, as this is one of the few really good fantasy writers with a mind and a style of their own.