A temple maiden haunted by dreams that are not her own, a King not long upon his throne, and the warrior that interweaves their destiny.
When a mysterious visitor comes to the remote island temple of Dawnslight, Alina Sinalae finds herself at the center of an ancient war once thought only to be a myth. Hunted by undead assailants, Alina and her new companion find refuge in the Northern Kingdom of Saphir.
Has the everlasting nightmare which brought the realm to the brink of destruction returned?
The peace of Despina crumbles as Alina desperately seeks to uncover the truth of the past and present, before it finds her first.
When they speak of our realm, Despina, it is a realm without Gods. It is said long ago they left our world, finding their influence too heavy handed, our deaths too many blamed upon their bidding. Before they departed, seven objects, chal’sei, were imbued with their essence and gifted to mortal men believed to be of righteous heart. Yet not all were so virtuous.
Ages past, the wars began. The skies blackened with the ashes of death. The very soil burned. Undying armies fed upon those who dared to stand against them. Life, was on the verge of irradiation.
In the end, just men imbued with the might of the departed Gods rose up and overcame the hungering darkness. With evil all but obliterated, a new area of peace has reigned for almost five thousand years, the revered chal’sei were lost to the world.
That is how the story goes. History after all, is at the mercy of those who write it. How would we know any different?
I believed it too once…until they came for me. Quickly I learned reality is never as pretty as the stories.
The Balance that has keep that ancient war in stalemate for countless centuries, has shifted. Some desperately seek to restore it. Others, seek to finally conclude it. And I…I fear the world will burn anew….and I will be to blame.
Blurb and cover from Goodreads
3 out of 5 stars
I struggled with what I would rate this book. On one hand, it had as many typos and word misuse as my brother’s homework, but at the same time, I really feel the writer is talented! Why do I say that? Because I couldn’t get the story out of my head, I kept wondering “what will happen next?” This story reminds me of why I fell so madly in love with true fantasy to begin with.
One thing I really struggled with is how blurry the line between good and evil is. In the first half, it was really hard to discern who I should be rooting for with all the shifting perspectives. The shifts weren’t distracting, they just showed all sides of the story, which I think was the author’s intent.
Alina, the main character, is alright. She’s not my favorite heroine ever, but she still had some of those little quirks that make you worry about her. There were a few parts where I wanted to slap her and ask her what the $&@#! are you doing?!” but it was because I was worried about her. I particularly don’t understand why she would be silly enough as to incite a one-night stand with a traveling companion and thus create completely unnecessary complications .
Arn, her sort-of love interest, was a mysterious and fascinating character. He was probably my favorite character, mainly because he was so dedicated to honor and to me that is a very endearing trait for characters to have. He also seems to care for Alina a bit more than he lets on, but I think I’ve figured out why he isn’t pursuing her. (YOU will have to read the book, ha-ha!)
Now let’s talk about Liane, the newly-made king who travels with Alina and Arn for most of the latter portion of the book. He’s a creep. And I think I’m being generous. He holds very little/no respect for women in that he uses and loses them like toys, but I could forgive that if it weren’t for him slaughtering the old king’s rightful heir and supporters to claim the throne and then taking the heir’s betrothed into his bed and essentially raping her. There were parts where it was easy to forget Liane’s rather icky background, but he’s more the kind of guy to beat up than hang out with. That sounded mean. I’m sorry, I just…ugh!
Overall, this book did had some redeemable qualities–intrigue, action, mystery, magic, a dash of almost-romance. It was enjoyable and I do want to read the sequel. I hope that the author keeps writing. She’s got talent!