Official Review: The Descent of the Phoenix

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kandscreeley
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Latest Review: The Descent of the Phoenix by Morgan Paul Cooper

Official Review: The Descent of the Phoenix

Post by kandscreeley » 07 May 2019, 13:30

[Following is an official OnlineBookClub.org review of "The Descent of the Phoenix" by Morgan Paul Cooper.]
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2 out of 4 stars
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Aschyllia is only 16. While she lives with her grandfather on his farm, she longs for more adventure, similar to the ones found in the books she reads. One day, while skipping out on her chores, she and her best friend, Bleak, stumble across a woman who has just given birth to a child. Bleak and Aschyllia try to help but get into more trouble, as a young man seeks to kill her. They manage to get the upper hand against him, but their act of kindness might cost them more than they realize. Thus starts Aschyllia's own real-life adventures.

The Descent of the Phoenix is written by Morgan Paul Cooper. This novel is around 400 pages, and I would classify it as an adventure. It takes place in a more medieval time, complete with swords, soldiers, horses, and a lack of technology. For that reason, it could be classified as fantasy (as it has no basis in actual history); despite that, there is no magic or supernatural creatures. There are some innuendos as well as some violence. However, nothing is too gory or explicit. For those reasons, I would recommend this for high school age and older.

I enjoyed the descriptive writing of the author which allowed me to picture the scene fully. Because of this, I was able to immerse myself into the story and escape the world for some time. Sentences like the following helped to create this graphic image. "...just as the sun broke into the sky, and filled the world with its radiant morning light, the two reached the grove of oaks and ashes, through which just enough sunlight weaved that Aschyllia would no longer need an artificial light."

In addition, the characters were realistic, inspiring, and, yes, even frustrating. The author sticks with the same group of characters throughout the novel; because of this, I grew to love these characters and felt almost as if they were family. Though there were secondary characters, it was not a story that had so many as to feel overwhelmed.

The novel slowly builds up in intensity, finally reaching a climax at the end. The pace was steady, which helped to keep my attention focused on the story at hand. There was a good mix of backstory to help the reader understand the characters' motivations as well as action so that the book wouldn't become boring. This is the first in a planned series, but I felt like there was at least some conclusion at the end, which kept me from feeling frustrated at the lack of finality.

There is one significant drawback to the novel, however - the editing. I don't believe the book was proofread by a professional, much less edited. Words were constantly missing from sentences. Names that were supposed to be possessive often weren't. The wrong tense was used relatively frequently. It slowed down the pace of the book as I stumbled over these sentences. For example. "Kalia, with Zie at her side, stood staring off to towards the west as the other girls existed the farmhouse..."

Overall, this was an enjoyable read that I would recommend to anyone who enjoys a character-driven, light adventure. Due to the numerous, overwhelming, and often distracting errors, I have to give The Descent of the Phoenix 2 out of 4 stars. Once some major proofreading and editing take place, I would have no trouble raising my score to the full 4 stars. In spite of these issues, I would like to see more of Aschyllia and Bleak's adventures.

******
The Descent of the Phoenix
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Post by Bianka Walter » 09 May 2019, 02:49

This seems like an easy fix for the author, especially when the rest of the book has been handled so well. With such rich character development and a story that keeps you captivated, I'm sure he'll get the editing sorted soon :)
Great review.
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Post by Prisallen » 09 May 2019, 06:14

This does sound like it would be a very nice book, if it didn't have so many errors. Hopefully, the author will get a professional editor soon. Thank you for a wonderful review!

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Post by Rachel Lea » 09 May 2019, 07:09

It's a pity that the editing is bad when the rest of the book appears to be quite entertaining and interesting. As commenters said above, I hope the author gets all of that sorted out soon. (As a side note, I really like the main character's name: Aschyllia... It's quite unique.) Thanks for your review!
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Post by kandscreeley » 09 May 2019, 07:49

Bianka Walter wrote:
09 May 2019, 02:49
This seems like an easy fix for the author, especially when the rest of the book has been handled so well. With such rich character development and a story that keeps you captivated, I'm sure he'll get the editing sorted soon :)
Great review.
I hope so! It would definitely be a winner once all the mistakes are fixed. I'd like to read the second in the series, but the errors were quite overwhelming. Thanks!
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Post by kandscreeley » 09 May 2019, 07:49

Prisallen wrote:
09 May 2019, 06:14
This does sound like it would be a very nice book, if it didn't have so many errors. Hopefully, the author will get a professional editor soon. Thank you for a wonderful review!
At least that's an easy fix. A little more proofreading, and it's a great book. It's harder to fix a bad story. Thanks!
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Post by kandscreeley » 09 May 2019, 07:50

Rachel Lea wrote:
09 May 2019, 07:09
It's a pity that the editing is bad when the rest of the book appears to be quite entertaining and interesting. As commenters said above, I hope the author gets all of that sorted out soon. (As a side note, I really like the main character's name: Aschyllia... It's quite unique.) Thanks for your review!
I do as well. All the characters have very interesting names. Bleak is actually a nickname. Her given name is Lady June Wangelse. Thanks for commenting!
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Post by kdstrack » 09 May 2019, 09:09

I enjoyed your synopsis of the book. The story line looks intriguing. I share your feelings about the errors. When you see an error, your impulse is to add it to your list. Then you see that you already have two pages and think, "You win. I give up!" That is so frustrating, especially when you are enjoying the book!! Thanks for your insights on this book and series. Very enjoyable.

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Post by kandscreeley » 09 May 2019, 09:15

kdstrack wrote:
09 May 2019, 09:09
I enjoyed your synopsis of the book. The story line looks intriguing. I share your feelings about the errors. When you see an error, your impulse is to add it to your list. Then you see that you already have two pages and think, "You win. I give up!" That is so frustrating, especially when you are enjoying the book!! Thanks for your insights on this book and series. Very enjoyable.
There are a lot of errors that I can overlook. Punctuation errors, especially a missing comma here or there, don't bother me that much. But when it's constantly missing words and you have to reread sentences to understand them, that's when I get annoyed. However, at least it's relatively easy to fix. Other than that, it was a great story. Thanks for commenting!
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Post by CommMayo » 09 May 2019, 09:26

This sounds like a fun an interesting novel with some quality characters and good world-building. Hopefully the author takes your comments to heart and invests in some time with an editor.

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Post by kandscreeley » 09 May 2019, 09:31

CommMayo wrote:
09 May 2019, 09:26
This sounds like a fun an interesting novel with some quality characters and good world-building. Hopefully the author takes your comments to heart and invests in some time with an editor.
Yes. If the editing was better, I would have gladly upped my score. I just wish authors would invest the time and money before publishing. Maybe they just aren't sure it's worth it? Either way, it had a good premise.
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Post by unamilagra » 09 May 2019, 18:08

This sounds like just the type of adventure story I would enjoy, with as much attention focused on character development as the plot. That said, pervasive errors in books always drives me crazy. I hope the author takes your advice and hires an editor.

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Post by rickxson » 09 May 2019, 18:42

I'm feel pity about this book. Is quite interesting but must correct some errors so readers can enjoy it.

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Post by kandscreeley » 10 May 2019, 07:20

unamilagra wrote:
09 May 2019, 18:08
This sounds like just the type of adventure story I would enjoy, with as much attention focused on character development as the plot. That said, pervasive errors in books always drives me crazy. I hope the author takes your advice and hires an editor.
It was interesting and enjoyable. If not for the errors, I would have given this a higher score. Thanks for commenting.
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Post by kandscreeley » 10 May 2019, 07:23

rickxson wrote:
09 May 2019, 18:42
I'm feel pity about this book. Is quite interesting but must correct some errors so readers can enjoy it.
You are right about that. Thank you for commenting.
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