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Reviews of books in a series, with a focus on urban fantasy.
Other genres include mystery, paranormal romance, and crime thrillers.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

A Darkness Forged in Fire: Book One of the Iron Elves by Chris Evans

I've had this up in my Currently Reading section for a long time. The reason is that I kept putting it down. It was very hard to get into. And at times, very hard to stay with. There was too much war, too much military, not enough interesting stuff happening. And a lot of politics, but the politics weren't entertaining, they were just aggravating.

The worldbuilding is okay. Not bad, but not great. The characters are interesting but really could have been better formed. The plot didn't really do anything for me. The dialogue was well done in some places and forced in others. And all of the military stuff made my eyes want to glaze over.

And the book does not tie things up nicely. It's Part One of a longer story, not the first book in a series. Huge difference.

Here is the blurb:

We do not fear the flame, though it burns us,
We do not fear the fire, though it consumes us,
And we do not fear its light,
Though it reveals the darkness of our souls,
For therein lies our power.
-- Blood Oath of the Iron Elves

First in a stunning debut series, A Darkness Forged in Fire introduces an unforgiving world of musket and cannon...bow and arrow...magic, diplomacy, and oaths -- each wielding terrible power in an Empire teetering on the brink of war.

In this world, Konowa Swift Dragon, former commander of the Empire's elite Iron Elves, is looked upon as anything but ordinary. He's murdered a Viceroy, been court-martialed, seen his beloved regiment disbanded, and finally been banished in disgrace to the one place he despises the most -- the forest.

Now, all he wants is to be left alone with his misery...but for Konowa, nothing is ever that simple. The mysterious and alluring Visyna Tekoy, the highborn daughter of an elfkynan governor, seeks him out in the dangerous wild with a royal decree that he resume his commission as an officer in Her Majesty's Imperial Army, effective immediately.

For in the east, a falling Red Star heralds the return of a magic long vanished from the earth. Rebellion grows within the Empire as a frantic race to reach the Star unfolds. It is a chance for Konowa to redeem himself -- even if the entire affair appears doomed to be a suicide mission...

and that the soldiers recruited for the task are not at all what he expects. And worse, his key adversary in the perilous race for the Star is the dreaded Shadow Monarch -- a legendary elf-witch whose machinations for absolute domination spread deeper than Konowa could ever imagine....

I hope the second book has less military strategy and positioning, less idiotic politics, and more story.

1. A Darkness Forged in Fire
2. The Light of Burning Shadows

1 comment:

  1. Ah, that's too bad. I can't stand when politics are the forefront and the story lacks because of it.

    Beautiful covers though. :)