Review of Light in the Dark

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Sam Ibeh
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Review of Light in the Dark

Post by Sam Ibeh »

[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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I always loved fantasy and gobbled any book I could lay my hands on with such a writing element. When I picked up Light in the Dark by Lori Hyrup, I was expecting a familiar feeling.

Alara, a Devi with an immortal soul, had lived thousands of years in different bodies in her bid to understand humans in the Earthen Realm. Sometimes she had to hide her true self depending on the timeline. In this current timeline, a good friend of hers, Nin — who had to disguise her elven nature due to racial bias — was kidnapped by vampires. The abductors left an ominous note. She rallied old friends and set out on the rescue expedition because this affected her progenitor and, indirectly, her existence. What perils awaited them on their journey? What were the consequences of her actions in her past lives?

The book's title and cover were appropriate. On the cover, I could see the picture that captured Alara's essence, from the markings on her skin and the symbol on her armor to the glowing sword. Readers would understand their connection once they read it.

I was disappointed that the book lacked a much-needed glossary of terms at the end for reference. The names of characters and locations were unique but confusing. By the time I was halfway through, I had forgotten most of the names introduced because they were not easy to remember. A glossary would have solved these. Luckily, the main protagonist had an easy name with a strong presence. I focused on her, which helped me not lose sight of the plot.

I feel the book is trying to be too progressive. The LGBTQ elements need to be toned down in a fantasy novel. There is a reason why books like Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter will withstand the test of time and are always worth a reread — they cater to popular tropes. Alara can be straight and won't change the story's outcome. Making a lesbian protagonist alienates a large percentage of fantasy readers. I also understand the need for acceptance of different sexualities. However, making the lead character lesbian will be counterproductive at the moment.

After looking past these nuances, I found the entire plot fun. It drew me immediately into the situation while providing necessary backstories as the story progressed. The world had a chaotic feel to it, which I loved. The plot was divided into two parts, and the suspense was balanced. The power scaling of the protagonist was kept in check, making it more realistic.

Light in the Dark was a satisfying read, albeit with its quirks. It was exceptionally well edited, as I found no errors. I would give it 3 out of 4 stars. I took a star because of the lack of a glossary to help with the confusing names and terms. I would appreciate it if the author added a glossary. I would recommend this book to lovers of fantasy novels with strong female protagonists.

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Post by Brown_Sucre »

Amazing book. I hope to make this pick someday. Insightful review.
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