Ralin is an outsider among outsiders. The dominant Users, who can manipulate their souls to create unique and powerful abilities, shun him for his lack of inborn talent. And even among his fellow exiles, he must hide his past. On the very day that he finds a lasting purpose for his life, everything is turned completely upside down.
Wanted by the government, pursued by monsters and mercenaries, and plagued by strange nightmares, the young man must travel beyond everything he has ever known to discover what is so important about him to cause such powerful people want him as an ally, or want him dead. To survive, Ralin and his allies will be pushed to the limit as they battle rock monsters, traitors, the undead, and even Ralin himself.
This Author did a great job of creating a world that is absolutely all his own. Creatures came to life from his imagination, to the page, and into my mind as I read. It was easy to get sucked in once the world building was set down, giving us a place to run into the adventure. I loved the twists and the ability of the author to keep us guessing. This was not a predictable plot and it was fun to discover along the way. I felt the characters were relate-able and easy to like.
I did find it interesting to discover this darkness in the main character - not in a bad way, but rather in the way that in all stories we know that there is good and bad inside people, and in stories like this - when you expect the character to come into their magic abilities - you expect it to be good. In this story, we are not sure that his abilities will make him good. So there is that question of "do we want him to gain his abilities ... or don't we?" And I love that question. It's so unique.
I do love that the author tied up this stories but left the wider, overall story line open for the next installment of the book. And I am excited to read that next book too. I do recommend this. It is probably more of a YA book - even though it starts tame it does get more detailed for battles & danger and it's not always pretty. But I really liked it!
R.A. Zaugg (1982-still kicking) was born in Ogden, Utah, to long-time Utahan parents as the first of their brood. His childhood was filled with fun, friends, and family values that have made him who he is today. His first novel "Hunt of the Fallen" began on sticky notes as he worked in a gas station, and was the spark that lit the fire of storytelling. With a bachelor's degree in Creative Writing, he is now working on his master's degree. He currently lives in Washington State with his wife and step-son.
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