'Writing for me is not about speeling, grammar or punctuation – that’s why we have editors.... No, writing for me is the ability to capture a story and put it in words.' - Fantasy Muse

Thursday, 15 June 2017

Soldiers' Redemption

Soldiers' Redemption (First Cohort Book 1) by M. R. Anthony.

Front Cover




Synopsis


Captain Tyrus Charing and the men of the First Cohort have fought on the wrong side for as long as they can remember. They have travelled from one battle to the next at the bidding of the cruel Duke Warmont, fighting endlessly for a man they despise. 
Now they want something different. They want to fight for the right people and for a deserving cause. There is hope for Captain Charing and his men – a saviour has come and she needs good, loyal soldiers in order to overthrow the Duke.
As the First Cohort try to pay for the sins of their past, they discover they’ve taken on far more than they could have imagined. They are unbeaten in battle, but the Duke does not care how many die, so long as he stays in power. 
Amongst his generals are sorcerers of great power, and an inhuman brute of callous evil, all of whom are eager to face Charing’s men. 
Soldiers’ Redemption is a brutal and gritty fantasy epic, about strength, bravery and an unwavering determination to beat the odds.

My Review


I like tales of redemption and characters finding hope after despair, and so this book instantly drew me in.

The story follows Captain Tyrus as he commands a group of 500 odd soldiers. They are called the First Cohort and are famed and feared in equal measures. They serve a tyrant called Duke Warmont, and after so long tire, from the endless killing, but they find redemption in the most unlikeliest of circumstances - a young woman, who becomes their saviour.

I found the book very well written and the words flowed nicely. The author did a great job capturing the description, particularly the fighting scenes, which often reminded me of Roman military but thankfully less convoluted. 

Captain Tyrus was a fascinating character, and shrouded in a little bit of mystery. The book was told from his point of view and you got a real sense of the conflict swirling in his mind and the sense of shame and regret of his past, but also the hope to be a better man.
I admired the rapport he had with his men, it was natural and infused with leadership, and I couldn't help but like the character.

As for the storyline I don't want to spoil it by revealing too much, other than to say, I was absolutely riveted by the book until I reached roughly 2/3 of the way in. For me the story just seemed to stall and near the end, it did seem to drag, which I thought was a shame as this book has a lot of potential.]
I was also initially confused with the start of the novel as the story seemed to be told midway through and a good chunk of information missed, eventually after reading a few chapters, I did manage to put the pieces together to form a more clearer picture.


Conclusion


For those who like a tale of redemption and a main character who is not simplistic but more profound in personality, will enjoy this book. 

Overall - even though the book fizzles out slightly near the end - I thought this book holds a lot of promise and I will be reading the sequel. 


Out of 10 Stars:


7 Stars


Buy it here:


Sunday, 14 May 2017

Wild Wastes

Wild Wastes by Randi Darren.

Front Cover




Synopsis


Before world war two could reach its conclusion, the world suffered what could only be defined as a cataclysm.
Legend has it that an experiment failed. Catastrophically so. And when it failed, the center of the United States, from the Sierra Nevada to the Mississippi river became "The Waste", where everything changed.
In The Waste, every fantasy creature, fairy tale demon, or mythological monster exists. From Orcs, to Neriads, Ogres, Trolls, Wratihs, Elves, Harpies, and even Beastmen. They all exist, and all despise humankind.
In the ruins of the west and east coasts new governments have arisen. With new jobs.
Vince is a Ranger, a profession whose sole job duty is surviving in the waste, and taking missions from the Ranger Guild. Be it courier services, escorts, or simply exploring tombs and cities.
Taking up an escort mission, Vince encounters a situation that will shape his life forever onward.
As well as the lives of everyone in North America.

My Review


I wasn't really sure what to expect after reading the blurb. The premise of the book was different, in that it mixes a modern world with fantasy, all in a post-apocalyptic setting. The centre of America has been transformed into a waste which has sprouted fantasy creatures such as elves, dwarfs, orcs etc.
Our main character is Vince who is a ranger, and as the story starts he encounters a female orc who attacks him. After defeating the orc, instead of killing her, he saves her.

The story then follows Vince as he befriends other supernatural creatures (mostly all female) whilst trying to prevent two kingdoms from breaking into an all out war.

I liked Vince as a main character, he wasn't an idiot or weak and made good decisions. There was an added mystery surrounding Vince's past which did leave me intrigued.

I do have to warn potential readers that this book has a heavy dose sex and some violence.

Conclusion


Overall the book is a bit dungeon and dragons, which I enjoyed but I was looking for a quick entertaining read, and not anything substantial. I would say this book is more catered towards young men, but beyond the sex there is an intriguing story at play which kept me interested throughout.

Out of 10 Stars:


7 Stars


Buy it here: