Published by Seventh Star Press on Feb 7, 2012
Format: eBook from Publisher
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The dwarven saga begins...
Roskin, heir to the throne of a remote, peaceful kingdom of dwarves, craves excitement and adventure. Outside his own kingdom, in search of fortune and glory, he finds a much different world, one divided by racial strife and overrun by war. The orcs to the south want to conquer all dwarves and sell them as slaves. The humans to the east want to control the world's resources.
Caught in the middle, Roskin finds himself chased by slave traders and soldiers alike as he discovers that friendship is the best fortune of all. Just when he thinks he has triumphed, an act of betrayal sends him into bondage. His only hope of escape is the faltering courage of a disgraced warrior whose best days are behind him...
I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
This was a fun fantasy story that focused mostly on dwarves, and specifically on Roskin. He is on a year long adventure in the outside world prior to taking on his role as the next ruler of the Kiredurk nation. He has decided to set himself a goal to obtain a lost dwarven piece of art called the brotherhood of dwarves, thinking it will bring him recognition and adventure. But the journey isn’t easy, and he encounters many setbacks along the way.
While I enjoyed the premise of the story, I found the execution a little rough in the beginning. The story starts with an encyclopedia-like description of dwarves, and the various dwarf nations and histories. It then had an overview of Roskin and his life and only really became a true story after Roskin left his home. Prior to that, and even at points after, it felt like I was being told about the story instead of experiencing it first hand.
I found the story picked up the further into it I got, especially the ending scenes. I felt those scenes and wished the rest of the book had the same level of reader involvement and interaction.
While Roskin was the main character, I felt that Crushaw was a much stronger, well-developed character. He stood out as flawed and realistic, and his story was quite touching. By comparison, Roskin felt wishy-washy and under developed. When I look back over the descriptions from the beginning of the story to his actions at the end, it doesn’t feel like the same character, and not just in a growth sort of way, it’s more a fundmental change.
Overall, this was a quick pure fantasy, quest-style story that is worth reading, once you get past the info dump in the beginning. I would guess that based on the quality of the story in the later part of the book that subsequent volumes in the series will be better executed than this one, and will make reading this one worth it.