Today I am taking part in a Blog Tour organised by Rachel’s Random Resources for The Torcian Chronicles by P J Reed. When I received the invite to get involved, I dived in straight away!
Mesham sits dejectedly in a tiny garret above an inn, as the lands of Torcia fall to the magically-enhanced army of the infamous Mivirian Horde. One of the last surviving ancient warlocks of Torcia, Mesham knows he is marked for death.
The Torcian king knocks on Mesham’s door later that evening and offers him the chance of rejuvenation in return for a seemingly impossible mission into the heart of Mivir. Mesham reluctantly agrees, only to realise the evil of Mivir has spread to the very top of the Torcian government.
As Mesham undertakes his quest to complete the mission, he finds himself hunted by his king, by the mighty Torcian warbands, and by the Horde.
But he cannot fail, for the fate of Mesham’s beloved Torcia rests in his hands.
I wanted to love this book – I really did.
When given the opportunity to take part I jumped in immediately, as I felt this would be a book right up my street. Theoretically, it is – fantasy is my favourite genre after all!
There are so many great books to choose from, making competition in the genre fierce. There were elements of the book that reminded me of other writers; the adventure undertaken by Mesham and Shadral struck me as rather Tolkien-esque, as the they stumble from pitfall to pothole and fight their way out of every danger lurking around the corner.
This wasn’t the review I had hoped to be writing; I had high expectations for this book, but unfortunately it just didn’t work for me. The plot has promise and I enjoyed the tale, but I struggled most with the way in which it was written.
The biggest make-or-break factor for me is the narration… and I have no qualms in admitting that I am very particular about it too. Some parts were written really well, but there were several I struggled with too. There are places in which the descriptions are repetitive and would benefit from being more concise. I appreciate fantasy requires world-building, but I feel some paraphrasing of descriptions could have achieved that better.
You may think I am pernickety in mentioning this, but whilst reading the book I picked up on a number of inconsistencies and contradictions in the text. I am really sorry to say it, but this is a pet hate of mine. If I read conflicting information to that I’ve been told already, I’m going to go back and check, and that ultimately breaks the reading flow. That makes reading take longer and it feels less of an enjoyable pastime and more of an exercise in concentration.
I think this has promise to be part of a good series that I am sure many others will love, but it turns out this first instalment just wasn’t my cup of tea.
P.J. Reed – Writer of warlocks and other magical creatures.
P.J. Reed is a writer and poet from England. She holds a BAEd from Canterbury Christ Church University and an MA from Bradford University. She has been widely published in anthologies and collections.
P.J. Reed currently lives in Devon, with a handful of teenagers, one feral cat and a dog called Fizz.
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