Official Review: The Cycle of Ages Saga: Finders Keepers

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Official Review: The Cycle of Ages Saga: Finders Keepers

Post by L_Therese »

[Following is the official review of "The Cycle of Ages Saga: Finders Keepers" by Barry Hayes; Jeremy Hicks.]
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In a world of magic and mystery, a young mage secretly transports a valuable and dangerous artifact by sea. When a botched spell turns an ordinary storm into a disaster, the ship is destroyed, leaving a handful of survivors stranded on an infamous island. Mercenaries, sailors, a priest, a knight, and the mage must seek a particular vessel of legend if they ever hope to leave the island. Unfortunately, whether by accident or through deliberate measures, this ship is guarded by more than even rumor could invent. These woe-begone travelers must now survive not only a vicious and deadly beast but also betrayal among themselves and a horror much more deadly. Secrets abound, and some of the lies and omissions could become deadly.

Barry Hayes and Jeremy Hicks have given their readership a world of elves, mages, demons, and more. It is complex and intricate with just enough detail to become alive and just enough left untold to allow the workings of the imagination. When removing a reader to another world, it is incumbent on the creator to infuse the new place with geography, history, culture, conflict, mystery, and mythology, and then provide a few compelling characters to make sense of it all. These authors have accomplished this, carefully weaving vibrant threads of religious philosophies, interracial tensions, local histories and yet more into the fabric of their world. And added to this, they have delivered a gripping adventure.

But no book is perfect. This story begins well in terms of plot, but the necessity of description in the beginning hampers the fluidity of the writing. Unfortunately, that description is vital, but it truly takes a master to accomplish vivifying a new place with the new creatures populating it without resorting to an excess of descriptors. It is a minor flaw and diminishes rapidly as the world becomes more familiar.

Despite my own enjoyment, I only give this three out of four stars. Fantasy-lovers will be enraptured, but this is not a book that can be enjoyed across genre-preferences. It is determinedly fantastical.

The gentlemen have designed this book as if it is one of many to come. The nature of the characters coupled with the mysteries of their world seems to invite such an idea. There is a plethora of possibilities remaining even in this limited view of what must be a vastly expansive universe. Let all who love to stretch their imaginations join me in hoping that Mr. Hayes and Mr. Hicks are not done yet.

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Post by TrishaAnn92 »

Great review. I am honestly looking forward to reading this book.
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