Synopsis: (from Goodreads)
At the untimely death of her guardian, fifteen-year old Vera finds herself alone in the dark world of Cruine where an unstoppable tyrant seeks to enslave all mankind. While fleeing from the dreaded hunter, Dane, she encounters secretive Lachlain Tu`Sual, a young Mystic of the Northlands. This union begets a whirlwind adventure when the pair embark on a quest to recover the mystical Aca`r and the seven guardians who will restore balance to Cruine. Unraveling riddles imparted to Lachlain in a mysterious journal, they are met with ferocious beasts, deadly traps and vicious demons at every turn on their journey to bring an end to the evil king’s reign.
There is a LOT going on in this book.
The preface reveals the first stage of a prophecy coming to fruition (“The illustrious bloom from the Eccles plant with entrancing blue petals would mean the time of oppression was drawing to an end.”) The story jumps to Vera – a girl we learn is the Guardian of one of the Aca’r. After the death of the woman who watched over her, Vera leaves the safety of her small, hidden vale. From the moment she steps foot upon her new path, she is hunted by a dark, evil force intent on claiming the Aca’r that dangles from her neck. She is saved just in time by the amvicus Sobek who then leads her to Lachlain (a seer). The three begin a quest to seek the remaining 6 Aca’r – for once all 7 have been found and the Guardians have been identified, the shadow reign of Neyta, the Demon King, will come to an end. However, for each Aca’r, the companions must decipher rhyming riddles bestowed upon Laclain in his visions which always lead them to difficult trials they need to conquer.
The reader is introduced to a whole slew of characters such as the Demon King Neyta, his right-hand man Dane, Vera, Lachlain, Edana, and many others (just to name a FEW). The story also includes sentinals, which as far as I could discern were some sort of magical creature specific to each region. These included the amvicus Sobek (a creature resembling a hare), the sorie Narea and Ailesh (great birds of the south), the rayak Onika (deer-like creature of The’ach), and, MY personal favorite – the Kattai-Li Sharrai (mighty black horses with flaming hooves, eyes and manes and smokey/firey breath who can see into the soul of the one who seeks their aid and judge whether the motives are evil or true.) There’s also an assortment of demons, like the venatores, and other dark and evil characters, like the Me’Lun. All of these aspects as well as the story as a whole are why this book gets 3.5 from me.
Now…as I said before, there is a LOT going on in this book. The plot develops quickly and the action moves swiftly. There are many parts that could have used more detail and development, which gave the tale a very simple, straight-forward feel. The lack of details didn’t take too much away from the story – however, for fantasy novels set in fantastical worlds, I prefer a little more meat. (If you’ve read my other reviews, then you already know this!) Similar to this is the ease with which the characters overcome obstacles and hardships. There weren’t any shocking moments, nor were there many twists. Like I said, very straight forward. Although, the author does dangle a little carrot at the end in preparation for the sequel.
The overall theme of the story seems to be about companionship, trusting in one’s fellow man, discovering oneself, and coming together to defeat an overwhelming evil despite all odds.
Overall rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars.
Appropriate for ages 14 & up.
For more information about Anna Bowman, check out her Goodreads Page.
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I received a free copy of The Scripts of Cruine from the author through Goodreads-Making Connections in exchange for an honest review.