Review of Light in the Dark

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Ngozi Onyibor
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Review of Light in the Dark

Post by Ngozi Onyibor »

[Following is an official review of "Light in the Dark" by Lori Hyrup.]
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3 out of 4 stars
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Light in the Dark follows Alara, an angelic being who took an interest in the beings of the Earthen Realm and chose to give up her wings to live among them. Amongst mortals, she is known as a devi, a being that can die and reincarnate in perpetuity. She has lived in the Earthen Realm for thousands of years, and, in that time, she has died many times and lived many lives.

She is the commander of a security team known as the Southern Irregulars in her current life. Shortly after she and her team rescued Kyrillis, the rightful heir of the Gyladran Empire, from her centuries-old imprisonment in the Pyramid of Dusk, Alara's best friend, Nin, was kidnapped by vampires while on patrol. The vampires let Nin's partner go and left him a cryptic, ominous message only Alara could read.

I love the subtlety with which Lori Hyrup describes traumatic events. The vague way she details the traumatic experiences some characters suffered is a nice contrast to the intensity of the book's plot. Sensitive readers will also appreciate the list of triggering words and events at the beginning of the book.

I also enjoyed the book's theme of friendship. Alara is a friend that goes above and beyond for her friends, and it's lovely to see such love and commitment demonstrated in platonic relationships.

Giving people the benefit of the doubt and not painting everyone with the same brush is another charming aspect of the book. For example, the shadow elves are infamous for being duplicitous. Yet, Alara didn't let their notoriety impede her relationship with them.

That being said, my main grouse with the book is that the characters rarely had room to breathe and just be—if they are not fighting, they are gearing up for a fight. The non-stop action was overwhelming. It also doesn't help that the weight of the entire plot rests on Alara. Whatever I know about the other characters, I learned through her interactions with them. As a result, they seemed more like props included to showcase how loving and accepting Alara is rather than people with their own personalities. Alara is depicted as a flawless person with nothing but love in her heart, making her one-dimensional. Her angelic perfection needs to be balanced with a dynamic, multifaceted character for a richer, more nuanced story. She simply lacks the depth and layers required to carry a long story in her current form.

Another weak point is the number of details I had to digest. The number of trivial characters and sun elves, shadow elves, moon elves, gnomes, dragons, liches, vampires, and other creatures I had to keep with was daunting. Such a diverse cast would have made more sense on a visual medium where I don't have to struggle to imagine how they look. In this case, while I'm trying to conjure a mental image of a creature, another one gets introduced. Constantly trying to keep up with them all drove my mind into a frenzy.

Conclusively, I rate the book 3 out of 4 stars. The book's plot is creative, and the editing is neat. However, it just didn't hold my interest. Readers with a penchant for action-packed fantasy novels with prominent female characters will find the book a worthwhile read. However, if you consider light descriptions of same-sex relationships and excessive violence a turnoff, you might want to look elsewhere.

Light in the Dark
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Post by Adaeze Joan »

The book's cover is very captivating and I am compelled by it to read this book. I do enjoy an action packed fantasy novel with prominent female characters. I would definitely love to read this book. Thanks for the review.
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Post by Ruthwriter »

The book has some deep and spiritual content that promotes some helpful insight into the real world.i love to have a look hopefully.great review.
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Post by Sopulu Ezidimma »

While reading the review it felt like I was watching a movie. It has an interesting storyline. Great review.
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Post by Amy Luman »

Sometimes I wonder about the characters in fantasy novels. Alara is an exception to the rule, however. She seems to truly care about the people she is dealing with. I like that only she could read the note left by Nin’s captors. It follows that she alone could save him.
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Post by Ifesi »

This review sounds interesting. Thanks for an honest review. Looking forward to reading this book.
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Post by Shillah Andeso »

I think the summary of the book is great. I'd love to be able to read this book.
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Post by Judy46 »

I would love to read this book. An angel coming to live among mortals, I would love to see how that plays out. Interesting review.
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Post by Peace10 »

This story has an interesting plot. I’ll like to read it. I’m adding this to my shelf.
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Post by Caitlin321 »

I think it’s great that the book prefaces any triggering topics. I can be a bit of a sensitive reader when it comes to violence and gore, so reviews that touch on this are very helpful! Thanks!
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Post by Uwe Neufeld »

It seems this book stages a whole world of fantasy. Yes, it is true, in a movie you are better able to track a great number of characters. This is because you get the visual image.
Great review!
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Post by Cocobutta »

I love the setup of your review, It is so elegantly written. The story definitely has an intriguing plot. Thanks for your review.
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Post by NetMassimo »

Despite the flaws you pointed out, this seems like an interesting fantasy novel with an engaging plot. Thank you for your great review!
Ciao :)
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