July 23, 2018
The Language Thieves is an exciting young adult fantasy novel written by Marc Remus.
Daniel Sullivan’s father just found a new job. So, Daniel, his father, and his mother who has been sick and unresponsive for a while leave Arizona and travel to a small Scottish island of Inverdee.
On their way, Daniel encounters the Cerebrals, an elusive tribe that drains languages from people’s minds, and who are somehow responsible for his mother’s sickness. Daniel is a bilingual who speaks English and Irish Gaelic. If discovered, he is likely to be attacked by the tribe and his language, or both, stolen.
Together with his friends Connor and Jenny, Daniel sets out to the Cerebrals’ village hoping to get her mother’s languages back. What they found out leads them to a far more sinister discovery.
This is an exciting and suspenseful fantasy book. It’s about family and friends, and what we are willing to do for them. It’s a combination of legends and modern technology and depicts preservation of traditions as well as embracing innovation. It has a set of delightfully charming characters like the stubborn and determined Daniel, skeptic but supportive Connor, smart and brave Jenny and the sweet and elusive Emily.
Scenes and settings are vividly described while dialogues between characters sound natural making the book an easy read that can be finished in one sitting. Needless to say, this is one very enjoyable book. However, the ending felt a little rushed and less conclusive than I hope it is.
Still, I love this book and I recommend it to fans of young adult fiction and fantasy books.
July 3, 2018
The Witchstone is a romantic dark fantasy written by Victoria Randall.
Fenrulf is an orphan turned wizard planning on exacting revenge from the town that caused him too much pain. For years, and with the help of his loyal servant, he gathers the ingredients for the most powerful spell of destruction except for the last one that belongs to an exceptionally beautiful witch, the Witchstone of Sibele.
This is a dark, chilling and suspenseful book about power, revenge, vanity, loyalty, love and self-redemption. Though the book lacks the conversational tone of the author’s most recent books, it is still an easy read. Scenes and sceneries are vividly described while the dialogues between the male and female protagonists, though traditional, sound charming and sweet.
The author created well-developed and quite relatable characters and it has been difficult for me to choose my favorite between the loyal dwarf Orog and the reclusive wizard Fenrulf. While the former is ultimately faithful and loyal to his master which is indeed an admirable quality, I found the latter’s unyielding determination laudable and his seeming indifference endearing. Finally, though I prefer a more conclusive denouement, I found the ending of the book not at all surprising.
While the best part of the story, for me, is the depiction of self-redemption, what I like most about the book is the unpredictability. It yields that frustrating feeling one gets from failing to guess what would happen next.
This is a great book and I enjoyed it immensely. However, I found some loose ends and unanswered questions which left a, somehow, nagging feeling.