4 out of 4 stars
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We are Voulhire: A New Arrival under Great Skies by Matthew Tysz is a story that takes you through a world of changes and possibilities. It starts with King Wilhelm, sovereign of Voulhire, sending apart his four sons to protect himself against their future desire of taking his throne: "The waves of desire will always flatten the sands of the Earth." He sends each of them to a separate island with enough wealth to have a comfortable life, but after 2 years they fall into a civil war. The narrative goes as we follow Galen Bray, one of the sons and main protagonist, through a journey to reach Vouhire to know more about himself, about his past, about his family past, and about Galen Onita, his uncle and benefactor that made possible his travel. He goes along with Rowan, a stranger hired by his uncle, and Demetrius, a mysterious mage and imbuer.
Inside the pages we meet knights, mages, lords, judges, warriors, captains, sailors and ancient notes that talk to you, not good things, I’m afraid. This book is an introduction to the large world, so the real action comes later in the book, but the flow of events is interesting and compelling. It places you in a world in the Middle Ages and lets you aware of another magic world called Caromentis. It places the cards on the table and let you have a small glance at the joker.
The events are narrated by Galen Bray whenever he in the scene and what seems an anonymous narrator for the other characters and situations. It’s a fast-moving fantasy and each chapter has as the title the name of the character you will know more about, which helps to situate yourself when places and perspectives changes.
The author has the clear intention of giving a message and to invite the reader to reflection. He touches subjects like hope, gratitude, treason, greed for power, corruption, honest and much more. It entertains you while makes you think how to be better, how to understand more people and what consequences your actions bring.
One of the things that I liked most about the book is the lesson in gratitude that we learn through Galen. He is afraid of death, unable to see a way out and a light of hope comes through a stranger. Galen expresses gratitude as he sees people helping him with such care. Think it this way: the only person that cares for you is dead, and all that is left is in the hands of strangers, but the strangers take good care of you.
Another beautiful lesson is about one of the basic processes of life: change, in many ways. For example, how Galen had to readapt to a clean and healthy life after living around so much filth; how to lift your internal state and self-confidence after lost track of your own looking; or even how to stay alert and ready to learn when the only way to survive is learning to do something you have never done. Do you want to learn? Give this book a try!
The book is professionally edited and contains sexual language, although it doesn’t have any sex scene. Because of that, I would recommend this book to young readers and adults. From my point of view, this kind of language is not used with abuse and sometimes even brings more reality to the character: “I hardly knew what romance was, let alone how to undermine it. I knew survival and loneliness.” From such a person with such life experience, some filth language may be expected.
There is nothing that I dislike about this book, so I rate it 4 out of 4 stars. I could write much more about the lessons, the suspense and mystery, and all the small plots inside the story, but you have to see it for yourself. It’s just too good! I can't wait for the sequel.
We are Voulhire: A New Arrival under Great Skies
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