Tuesday, January 3, 2012

The Leaves of Dusk

New book giveaway here! http://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/show/18880-the-leaves-of-dusk
Also, check out the latest reviews of my books! http://www.goodreads.com/review/show/252371029

Review by goodreads.com user jD:

Leaves of Dusk is the conclusion to Exiled Son. The two part series doesn’t have a name but neither book is a stand-alone.
There are so many great things about this dark fantasy that I struggle to find the right words. So I will break it down by what impressed me most.

A war is coming and the odds are not in favor of the good guys. The impossible struggle these characters faced to save their world is epic in and of itself. A dark force has risen to settle a score between long dead and forgotten gods. There is corruption in the land and the heart of the ruling class. The people suffer in fear rather free or surviving enslavement. There is a prophecy that the Exiled Son will be the key to saving the world while wielding a magical sword.

An epic journey requires epic world-building. The trick is doing it like the master pieces – Lord of the Rings and Game of Thrones. Suffice to say, Exiled Son and Leaves of Dusk holds its own. I was awed by each forest, desert, cave, city, and stream. The people and creatures that lived beside them were so distinctive and original. I especially found Leaves of Dusk to be the stronger of the two as far as world-building based on the fact that the main characters spilt up thus expanding the scenes.

The main hero is Tallic Shawen if you look at it from the perspective of the first book and the prophecy. At least I did until Leaves of Dusk. In this final installment, the supporting cast of characters expanded with new heroes and gave much more dimension to those already introduced. A few must be mentioned such as Santeris, VonWhitager, Pestileras, and Iolore. There were a couple of non-human heros that won my respect as well – Steedwing and Spiritlit were flying reptiles/small dragons called Atrecans that saved the day more times than I can count. The Meagers were a race of short men that that spoke like pirates and had fingers that were just as sticky. They grew on me and I found their part in the journey gave me some needed comedy relief. I am just mentioning a few to provide a sense of the size of the cast and emphasis the need for many heroes to battle the SagreLin, an enemy I wouldn’t wish on any world. The SagreLin were pure evil and damn near indestructible.

I am very happy with myself for sticking with this series and reading Leaves of Dusk. I was going to skip it because I didn’t know it was already published. I was worried I would not remember all the characters from Exiled Son. I was also worried that I would not receive any reward after over 1000 or more pages. I wanted my payoff in an HEA. Well, I got the payoff and as I expected, the price was very high and was paid in ways I would never have foreseen. Going forward, this series will become part of the template I use to frame my definition of great fantasy. I feel absolutely comfortable putting this one on the same shelf as Lord of the Rings, Chronicles of the Necromancer, and the Warded Man. I recommend this series to lovers of epic fantasy who enjoy a large cast of characters, changing perspectives, and plenty of bloodshed. It’s not a pretty war when the time comes and it’s not a quick chapter trip in and out but it’s well worth every painful moment. I could give this no less than 5 stars because it was exceptional in every way that counts.

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