September Sylph Series: Heyou!


No, not you. Heyou, the battle sylph.

It’s a silly name, I know, but it’s the perfect example of L.J. McDonald’s quirky humor. To find out how Heyou got his ridiculous name, read on, as we continue our celebration of Queen of the Sylph‘s release with a weekly sylph profile!

Sylph (n): a mythological creature composed of the elements. The term, which originated in Paracelsus, commonly describes sylphs as invisible beings of air or “faeries of the air.” L.J. McDonald’s sylphs are either fire sylphs, air sylphs, water sylphs, earth sylphs, or battle sylphs. Battle sylphs are unique to L.J.’s original fantasy world; they are creatures of magic, unrelentingly male, who were traditionally bound to a male master in a sacrificial ritual. In L.J.’s debut, The Battle Sylph, everything changes when this dark ritual goes awry and a battle sylph is bound to a woman instead.

Name: Heyou

A concept sketch of Heyou (right) courtesy of Anne Cain, artist of the Sylph series covers.

A concept sketch of Heyou (right) courtesy of Anne Cain, artist of the Sylph series covers.

Namesake: The first word a master speaks to his/her battler becomes his name. The first thing Solie says to her sylph is “heyou.” Here’s an excerpt from their first meeting: “The battler landed on the altar, bracing itself atop her, a beast formed of smoke and lightening, staring downward. She felt its emotions, its interest and its curiosity. Its eyes stared into hers, and she blushed as it slowly looked down the length of her body and then back up again. It purred, bent its head, and licked her from her navel up across her breasts and along her neck…What had the king said? Name it. ‘Hey, you,’ she managed, barely able to speak at all, she was so frightened. She swallowed, trying to get her tongue untied enough to ask its name, and it breathed warm air on her. Heyou it repeated softly, the sound echoing in her mind. Had she just named it?”

Species: Battle Sylph

A rendering of Heyou in his human form.

A rendering of Heyou in his human form.

Form: Battle sylphs can generally transform into any shape they wish. A battle sylph’s natural form is incorporeal and looks something like a cloud of smoke and lightning. In the human form Heyou originally takes (unknowingly modifying himself after all the men he had seen over time) Solie thinks to herself that “she’d never liked hair that short, and he was really rather skinny, his features rather plain and unremarkable. For someone who could change his shape, he’d certainly picked a boring one.” Once Solie tells him this, she helps mold him into a more likeable male. From then on, Heyou dons long, brown, straight hair, has a strong, broad muscular build, long legs, an angular and symmetrical face, and a height just a little taller than herself. Solie remarks “he became a stunning young man…the kind she was sure even her aunt would sneak a look at in the streets.”

First appears in: The Battle Sylph, which is mainly his story. He also plays a role in The Shattered Sylph and Queen of the Sylphs.

Personality: As far as sylphs go, Heyou is a young one, so the defining element of his personality is his youthful sense of humor. He’s also playful, likeable, and incredibly loyal to and flirtatious with Solie. There’s a lot of growth in his character throughout the series but he never loses these core elements of his being.

Master: Solie, a young, beautiful woman initially intended as a sacrifice to lure a battler to a male master, but she ends up being bonded to the battler instead. In the process, Solie becomes the first female to be mated to a battle sylph and eventually the Queen of the sylphs.

Heyou highlights: The last paragraph on page 95 of Queen of the Sylphs (I don’t want to give anything away by quoting). I think this whole sub-plot in Queen is absolutely hilarious.

Check in next Thursday for a sylph profile on Claw!

If you were given a battler, what would you want its human form to look like? Leave a comment below and let us know what your preference is. We’ll be choosing one lucky commenter to win the entire series in trade after the last sylph profile (09/29)!


17 Responses to September Sylph Series: Heyou!

  1. If I were give a battler… I would love to have him to look like either Oded Fehr or Paul Walker. 😉

  2. Yvonne B. says:

    Hmmm…….If I were given a battler, then I’d have to go with Clive Owen’s looks.

  3. Laurie Wood says:

    If I were given a battler, I’d like Charlie Hunnan. 😉

  4. drey says:

    I’m on a Daniel Craig high right now. Too much re-watching of his Bond movies, I guess. But there you have it. Daniel Craig.

  5. Estella says:

    If I were given a battler, I would want him to look like John Wayne—-have I dated myself?

  6. My battler would look like Shemar Moore 😉

  7. Azzell says:

    If I were lucky enough to have a battler, I would let him do his own choosing on his form. Just so it wasn’t frightening! However, I might nudge him a little when it comes to any human form; not too young or old, and the hair could be short or long, but he’d definitely have to be cute!

  8. kanch says:

    My battler would have Gerard Butler’s look from the movie “300” (but perhaps w/o that beard!)

  9. Insane Hussein says:

    Human form: Ryan Reynolds with Alan Rickman’s voice. RAWR!

  10. I’d like my battle sylph to look like actor Mark Frankel.

  11. MelanieCDuncan says:

    I’d like my battler to look like Anne Cain created him. Her artwork/covers are amazing!

  12. Sandra Harlow says:

    Hand pick my own– well, well, well.
    Just off the top of my head with no forethought whatsoever (ahem) backside of Jason momoa (aka Conan ) front side of clay Matthews III ( green bay packers check out this months cover of muscle & fitness ladies) face: strong jaw, full- lips, eyes/ eyebrows cross between Sean Connery & Colin Farrell. Height of the 6’4″ guy tossing the caber at the Scottish festival. 🙂


      Hi Sandra,

      Congratulations! You’ve been randomly selected as the winner of our September Sylph Series! Please check your email and reply with your address to claim your prize.

      I hope you enjoy these wonderful books and hope to see you back at to Dorchester Community Blog soon!


  13. Kaya H says:

    Oh well put me as Joe Manganiello! that would be my Sylph body 😉

    I read the first book, and it was amazing. I would love to read more!

  14. Teri C says:

    I heard about this series online and was very interested. The concept of the Sylphs and their history sounds like it is filled with great characters and fabulous world building. I cannot wait to read it.

    If I had a body to choose put me in as Vincent Regan. 300 and Sylphs?! Yes.

  15. I’d love my Sylph to look like Oded Fehr or Geoffrey Rush. Both are devastatingly handsome in each his own way!


    Greetings sylphinians! (or sylphites? sylphalones? Who knows)

    I just wanted to extend a thank you to all you lovely readers for participating in our September Sylph Series! Commenter Sandra Harlow was randomly selected as our prize winner, but I hope that won’t deter you all from delving into these fantastical fantasy romance books!

    Also, be sure to read Sunday’s interview with L. J. McDonald, the author of the Sylph series:

    Thanks again for tuning in!


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