Review by LeighBee -- We are Voulhire: The Ascension of ...

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LeighBee
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Review by LeighBee -- We are Voulhire: The Ascension of ...

Post by LeighBee »

[Following is a volunteer review of "We are Voulhire: The Ascension of Akistry" by Matthew Tysz.]
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4 out of 4 stars
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We are Voulhire: The Ascension of Akistry, by Matthew Tysz, is the fifth book in a fantasy series about two parallel worlds. One world is the physical world called Cosmos; the other is the world of magic called Caromentis.

Like the previous books in the series, this book continues to focus on the main character, Galen. It also includes the perspectives of many of the other supporting characters in different cities across the kingdom of Voulhire. While circumstances in the previous novel separate Galen from his companions, the three are united throughout most of this novel. Because of a message from the Emperor of Whispers, Galen feels that Meldorath must be defeated. Galen’s frustration with his friend Demetrius, the monk, clouds his vision as he compels his friend to lead him through the Dire Jungle. Galen is sure he will find the solution he needs in the mysteries of this perilous, sentient forest. As in the other novels of this series, however, it is not clear if the characters are entirely good or entirely evil. The profit Akistry challenges Galen to face his past in order to act with clarity. Galen and his companions must act on their instincts and hope that they choose the correct path.

Tysz effectively furthers the overarching plot with each novel in the series. In this novel, the majority of the central conflicts converge as the series moves towards the climax. Characters that seem diametrically opposed in previous novels find common ground. Previous allies lose each other’s confidence and even turn against each other. Tysz continues to use concise descriptions to create vivid imagery as readers experience settings through the characters’ viewpoints. I thought it was clever that Tyze uses the two perspectives of a character walking the jungle’s floor and another character using his magic to travel above the jungle’s canopy. Through these two perspectives, readers can imagine the vastness of the Dire Jungle.

While the plot of the novel has a satisfying conclusion, the conclusion leaves readers eager to read the final book in the series. It is difficult to explain how much I enjoyed the complex weaving of plots that have taken brilliant turns in this book without giving away spoilers. I especially appreciated that while some of the events were shocking, they all made sense and tied together clues from previous books in the series. I also enjoyed Tysz’s use of a snake-like creature - traditionally associated with evil in our culture - as the benevolent, patient, and wise prophet. Through the juxtaposition of this serpentine creature with the casual callousness shown by some humans towards other humans, Tysz emphasizes the terribleness of the humans’ actions.

The only part of this novel I didn’t thoroughly enjoy was the unclear descriptions of Rowan’s motives. In the first novel, Tysz plants seeds of doubt about Rowan’s potentially ulterior motives that still have not been addressed. Instead, Rowan's answers about himself remain evasive. Apart from Rowan’s loyalty to Galen, it is difficult to determine if he can be trusted. Although I find this frustrating, I suspect that in the final novel in the series, Tysz will reveal that this ambiguity was intentional.

I rate this novel 4 out of 4 stars. The novel is fast-paced and entertaining. Each book in this series seems to build on and exceed the strengths of the previous novels.

I would highly recommend the entire series to anyone who enjoys the genre of fantasy. I would not recommend this book to anyone who has not read the first four books of the series.

******
We are Voulhire: The Ascension of Akistry
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Eutoc
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Post by Eutoc »

I haven't gotten this far in the series. I can see that Galen is now taking charge of situations and acting more like a lead character
What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.

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Post by Saint Bruno »

Wow! You are way ahead.... I just read the second book of the series. I am glad that Tysz didn't drop the ball in this installment. Thanks for the detailed review and recommendation.
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Post by RayRuff »

I just finished this book recently too! I loved reading your review. It is very informative. I completely forgot about Rowan's motive in the first book, so I was glad to see your thoughts on that.
I am also looking forward to the next book. I am a bit confused as I think it's the last book in the series, but I heard the author is writing three more books. I guess we will know when we check out the next one!
Looking forward to your future reviews.
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Post by Marcel Cantu »

I really enjoyed reading your review and your analysis of how the plot and characters come together in this part of the series. Great work.
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Post by Miriam Molina »

I think the series has a total of nine books. Sadly, I have only read the first. I really hope to see what will become of Galen and Meldorath at the end.
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Post by kandscreeley »

Fast-paced books are something I flock to. The author's writing style, though, is a bit much for me. The changing perspectives get confusing. Thanks.
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Post by Mtibza eM »

I have paused reading this series because I felt to be reading one book over and over again. But after this, I think I will hate to continue with it. Thank you for sharing such an insightful review.
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Post by Prisallen »

I have not read any of the books mainly because I didn't want to get into a series. However, they do sound intriguing. I really enjoyed reading your well-written review. Thanks!
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Post by Raluca_Mihaila »

Tysz manages to offer an amazing adventure in each of the book, without letting the reader down. I find it amazing that I cannot guess the direction of the plot. Also, the character development is outstanding. I hated and loved Meldorath for his actions, and even now I can decide if he is evil or good. Congratulations for this amazing review!
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Post by LeighBee »

Saint Bruno wrote: ↑24 Mar 2021, 01:19 Wow! You are way ahead.... I just read the second book of the series. I am glad that Tysz didn't drop the ball in this installment. Thanks for the detailed review and recommendation.
The fifth book has been my favorite, so far. I am not regretting my choice to finish the series. Tysz has a unique style and some very creative ideas.
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LeighBee
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Post by LeighBee »

raluca_mihaila wrote: ↑28 Mar 2021, 09:33 Tysz manages to offer an amazing adventure in each of the book, without letting the reader down. I find it amazing that I cannot guess the direction of the plot. Also, the character development is outstanding. I hated and loved Meldorath for his actions, and even now I can decide if he is evil or good. Congratulations for this amazing review!
I think that is one of my favorite parts of the series - that the characters, much like real people, are neither entirely good nor entirely bad. They are often supernaturally powerful, but they are still relatable humans. :)
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Post by LeighBee »

RayRuff wrote: ↑24 Mar 2021, 05:15 I just finished this book recently too! I loved reading your review. It is very informative. I completely forgot about Rowan's motive in the first book, so I was glad to see your thoughts on that.
I am also looking forward to the next book. I am a bit confused as I think it's the last book in the series, but I heard the author is writing three more books. I guess we will know when we check out the next one!
Looking forward to your future reviews.
That makes so much sense. I'm glad you shared that as I've just finished the series. The last novel has a sense of completeness, but there are definitely some characters and conflicts that could turn into future books. Thank you for the heads up; I will keep my eye out for new books in the series. :)
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LeighBee
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Post by LeighBee »

Eutoc wrote: ↑23 Mar 2021, 23:14 I haven't gotten this far in the series. I can see that Galen is now taking charge of situations and acting more like a lead character
His development has been well-timed by Tysz, I think. When he starts to take charge, it is much more believable that Rowan and Demetrius follow his lead.
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LeighBee
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Post by LeighBee »

Prisallen wrote: ↑28 Mar 2021, 07:41 I have not read any of the books mainly because I didn't want to get into a series. However, they do sound intriguing. I really enjoyed reading your well-written review. Thanks!
I think it's worth it - the first books are fairly short and even the final books are under 300 pages. I thought the first books in the series read more like novellas.
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