4 out of 4 stars
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Once there lived a wise and wicked ruler…
Those first few words got me instantly hooked! It sounded like a classic fairy tale! We are Voulhire: A New Arrival under Great Skies by Matthew Tysz is the first book of the We are Voulhire fantasy series.
We are introduced to the story of Galen Bray from the Lands of the Princes. The King had given each of his four sons an island to rule. These small islands were once beautiful and prosperous until the princes competed to rule the entire chain of islands and to eventually become the heir of their father’s empire. The princes were engaged in a civil war for years. Living in any of the islands ruled by the princes means death by a sword or hunger. Galen Bray received papers and instructions from a distant relative to be the heir of his business. Given the way of life in the Land of the Princes, he didn’t stop and consider any details. He immediately set off to travel to a land that is far away from these wars and undesirable living conditions.
Why did the relative choose Galen as the heir for his business, someone who lives so far from him? Is the life in the new kingdom different from the land that he had escaped from? What awaits Galen in this new, unfamiliar place?
First and foremost, I would like to commend the considerably young author for this masterpiece. The exciting plot and the rich story would make a lovely and interesting tv series. The use of words set the tone of the medieval era. Tysz has effectively made use of his talents in providing vivid descriptions consistent and relevant to the language used. One example is, “his silken red beard swaying in the breeze as he bowed low.” The book is packed with adventure, magic, history, treachery, mystery, and all other elements that we commonly find in a magical kingdom kind of setting/story.
I feel the story is a bit slow at some point. Many characters were introduced at the beginning that I have had some difficulty managing to remember. That is the only thing that I dislike about the book. This is a personal preference, therefore, there is no need to take it against the book and deduct a point. As I continued, the characters were developed eventually and I get to understand their participation and involvement, not to mention their intentions. I also came to understand that since this is a series of books, there are more attributes of the characters that will be provided in the next series.
I found no errors that I consider the book professionally written and edited. There were instances of profanity, mentioned of death, and somewhat disturbing mentioned of sex that may be unsuitable for young and/or conservative readers.
I, therefore, conclude that We are Voulhire: A New Arrival under Great Skies by Matthew Tysz deserves a four out of four stars rating. I would recommend the book to readers of fantasy novels. If you enjoy reading books or watching series similar to Game of Thrones, you may find the book interesting.
We are Voulhire: A New Arrival under Great Skies
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