2 out of 4 stars
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Three worlds full of life lie in another part of our universe. Celestial Prime and Pleiades Prime live in peace with one another, but Apophis Prime is a world where the strongest rule only as long as they can survive. One fateful day, an object crashes down on Pleiades Prime. After the dust settles, the object is discovered to be a living person! This person would put Superman to shame with his slew of powers, but he doesn't know who he is or how he got there except that he "flew there." Soon, this mysterious man has to put his newfound powers to use as an assault from Apophis Prime threatens the galaxy.
Meanwhile, this mysterious superhero realizes that he's part of a prophecy from Celestial Prime's holy scriptures. Not only that, his powers come from one of the first pieces of matter created by the big bang, the blue heart stone. This heart stone has an equally powerful opposite, the red heart stone, and it's about to choose a host of its own.
I'm a huge fan of superhero books, especially origin stories, and that's exactly what A Pinnacle Crisis: Book One Revelation of the Heart Stones is. Within this short 67-page book, readers are given the origin story of Eternal (the mysterious superhero), a look at a trio of planets, and an epic confrontation between them.
Unfortunately, this "origin story" is the biggest disappointment of the book. Good origin stories allow readers to spend some time with the hero before they get their powers. This encourages readers to truly care about them as a person before their abilities are given to them. They may seem confused, overwhelmed, scared, and/or tempted to use these abilities for evil instead of good. But then there's a call to action, a reason for them to put their own life at risk, often against a villain that's their equal or far more powerful than them. In A Pinnacle Crisis: Book One, none of this is successfully pulled off. Eternal is so powerful that I can't think of a single force that would stand a chance against him. We get approximately 5 pages about his life before he gains his powers in a flashback, but it's not enough to make me relate to him. And while he didn't fully grasp how powerful he was initially, he was still an unstoppable force from the second he left the crater that he landed in.
Then there's the writing. I came across 32 grammatical errors throughout the book. On top of that, numerous phrases were worded so poorly that I had to re-read them to figure out what was being said. The descriptiveness was terrific sometimes, particularly in battle scenes, but other times it was confusing or just dull. On the bright side, the handful of brutal death and torture scenes aren't described in depth. Some of the foundational information that we're given is contradicted throughout the story, and some events seem incredibly out of place as if they happen solely to show off the hero's strength or continue the plot. But worst of all, the book is far too short. 67 pages aren't anywhere near enough to do this story justice, and almost everything in the book feels like it's in fast forward.
I really wanted to like C. K. Stevens' A Pinnacle Crisis: Book One. With a lot of polish and at least another 50-100 pages, this could've been a superb introduction to Stevens' world. As it stands, I'd only recommend it to the biggest superhero fans, especially those who enjoy a bit of spirituality in their books. While "God" is mentioned, it's not any specific God, and this theme is used in small enough doses that it shouldn't affect anyone aside from the most anti-religious and the most touchy about "blasphemy." Also, while the most "erotic" the content gets is some kissing and the most profane word I found was "hell," I still wouldn't recommend the book to anyone under 13 because of the handful of grotesque scenes. My rating of the book is 2 out of 4 stars.
A Pinnacle Crisis
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