4 out of 4 stars
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No one is to call upon his name. To give him attention, even in death, is to surrender to his dark power. Everyone in the Kingdom believes the Dark Lord to be dead, but is he gone for good? Or is this all an elaborate lie the King has come up with to protect his people? In Matthew Tysz’s We are Voulhire: A New Arrival under Great Skies, he spins a narrative detailing a world filled with magic and deceit. The story follows the citizens of Voulhire and those who conspire against the kingdom as the nation faces some of its greatest dangers yet.
This story acts as a foundation for the We are Voulhire series and greatly sets up the action that is pursued throughout the remaining books. This book is one that shifts perspectives in each chapter. It follows various characters, each revealing a different aspect of the background or the plot to give the readers a solid understanding of Voulhire and the mysteries surrounding its past. While there are many different characters, our story focuses on a significant three: Galen Bray, a commoner from the Land of the Princes, Lord Eldus, the new lord of Hillport, and King Wilhelm, the trusted leader of the country. The King says that the previous lord of Hillport, Lord Meldorath, is dead, but his people begin to think otherwise. As each character faces new challenges within this vast land of magic and mystery, horrors are revealed, and truths are uncovered. The King believes he is protecting his people, but could his actions inevitably be what leads them to their demise?
I loved this book from beginning to finish. The various perspectives throughout the book made for a very entertaining read, as I was able to understand various aspects of the world from differeing points of view. Seeing this magical land from the eyes of a commoner who came from a war-ridden island was great for depicting how beautiful and full of promise Voulhire could be to those who explored it. Portraying the political side of ruling a country as well as showing just how difficult covering up the past can be helped me to better understand both the King and Lord Eldus’ intentions behind their actions. Overall, this writing style fit the story very well and kept the book moving at a very fast pace.
Another thing I loved about this book was how Tyze managed to create such an intricate history to the kingdom without droning on too much. Certain aspects of the history and layout of the land were given indirectly, or were used to hint at a bigger picture. This ensured that giving context didn’t hinder the plot and it also managed to build suspension as more about Voulhire’s past was gradually revealed.
Overall, this book was a fantastic read that left me longing to read the other books in the series. Perhaps the most important aspect of this book was the subliminal hinting that even if you have good intentions, lying to those you love to protect them may end up hurting them much more than the truth would have. I would rate We are Voulhire: A New Arrival under Great Skies 4 out of 4 stars due to its captivating plot, intricate history, and the impeccable editing. This book did use some strong profanity and had some violent depictions of fighting, so I would not recommend it to a young audience. I would recommend this book to any mature reader, especially those who have an interest in fantasy.
We are Voulhire: A New Arrival under Great Skies
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