Official Review: The Witchstone by Victoria Randall

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Eryn Bradshaw
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Latest Review: The Witchstone by Victoria Randall

Official Review: The Witchstone by Victoria Randall

Post by Eryn Bradshaw » 08 Sep 2018, 08:44

[Following is an official OnlineBookClub.org review of "The Witchstone" by Victoria Randall.]
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3 out of 4 stars
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An enchantress named Sibele lives in an enchanted castle. The surrounding villages tell stories about her that warn young maidens from nearing the castle, else Sibele would capture them and eat their flesh. In her castle, she remains young and beautiful with the help of the Witchstone. Fenrulf, a young wizard, is working on a spell of destruction to get his revenge on the city Sangara. To complete his spell, he needs Sibele’s Witchstone. When he sends his servant, Orog, to steal the Witchstone, another steals the Witchstone from Orog. With the turn of this event, Sibele and Fenrulf must travel together, overcoming many dangers, to retrieve the stone from Wizard-King Rothric.

In The Witchstone, Victoria Randall takes two characters who are more like villains than heroes and follows them on their adventure to reacquire the Witchstone which was stolen from Sibele then Fenrulf’s servant. Both Sibele and Fenrulf character portrayals are very interesting because they could easily fill a villainous role. Although they might never become the hero-type readers are used to reading, they grow and develop throughout the book which leads to unexpected actions.

Randall sets the scenes in the world beautifully and creatively. There are unique places Sibele and Fenrulf visit that might not have been read before in other fantasy novels. One such place is the Lands of Gold, where the citizens are seemingly metallic and rooms are carved out of great jewels. The imagery weaved in and out of the novel helps readers to fully immerse themselves in the world. For example “...the air had the mintleaf taste of spring, the scent of rain-cleansed earth.” and “...the sun rose like a cup of gold out of the white mists of the morning.”

One element that could have been developed more in the book were side characters. Rothric, the main antagonist, only had one motivation for stealing the Witchstone away, which won’t be spoiled here. That single motivation didn’t seem to connect with why Rothric took the Witchstone to other kingdoms and lands. An old woman lives in the castle with Sibele, but why and how she got there isn’t well explained. She seems to be there for a chance encounter with Fenrulf at the beginning of the book. Even Orog, who traveled alongside Sibele and Fenrulf the entire book paled in comparison to their development and was dubbed Fenrulf’s faithful servant, nothing more.

Overall, I found The Witchstone an enchanting fantasy. I enjoyed each twist and turn the book took me through. There were times I was on the edge of my seat, reading further to know an outcome. There were a few typos I found while reading though it didn’t diminish my enjoyment of the novel. I rate The Witchstone 3 out of 4 stars. I enjoyed the main characters Sibele and Fenrulf and their development but would have liked to see more development from Rothric and the side characters. I would be delighted to recommend this dark fantasy to anyone who enjoys the genre.

******
The Witchstone
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Bianka Walter
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Post by Bianka Walter » 09 Sep 2018, 16:07

Ooooh I LOVE dark fantasy. This one sounds great :) Already the weird names and odd places and objects are a winner for me. It's also a plus that the author can obviously spin a tale.
Awesome review, Eryn!
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Post by jcoad » 09 Sep 2018, 16:39

Very thorough review! It provided a great summary of your thoughts and the book. It reads like it is definitely a fantasy book but I don't mind that genre (although you find yourself always comparing everything to Lord of the Rings and it can't win). I'll think i will give this one a shot. Thanks for the review!

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Latest Review: The Witchstone by Victoria Randall

Post by Eryn Bradshaw » 10 Sep 2018, 13:20

Bianka Walter wrote:
09 Sep 2018, 16:07
Ooooh I LOVE dark fantasy. This one sounds great :) Already the weird names and odd places and objects are a winner for me. It's also a plus that the author can obviously spin a tale.
Awesome review, Eryn!
It was great read! I hope you enjoy it if you pick it up. Thank you for reading my review!
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Eryn Bradshaw
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Latest Review: The Witchstone by Victoria Randall

Post by Eryn Bradshaw » 10 Sep 2018, 13:22

jcoad wrote:
09 Sep 2018, 16:39
Very thorough review! It provided a great summary of your thoughts and the book. It reads like it is definitely a fantasy book but I don't mind that genre (although you find yourself always comparing everything to Lord of the Rings and it can't win). I'll think i will give this one a shot. Thanks for the review!
LotR is just too much a classic to compete with. :lol2: This one was good though. Hope you like it if you do pick it up. Thanks for the comment!
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Post by kfwilson6 » 10 Sep 2018, 13:47

A traveling adventure with witches, wizards, and rooms made of jewels; love it! The lack of character development is not much of an issue for me. I tend to be more interested in an intriguing plot. The only thing that gets me is really stilted dialogue. Great review. I'll have to keep this one on my shelf for later.

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Latest Review: The Witchstone by Victoria Randall

Post by Eryn Bradshaw » 10 Sep 2018, 14:16

kfwilson6 wrote:
10 Sep 2018, 13:47
A traveling adventure with witches, wizards, and rooms made of jewels; love it! The lack of character development is not much of an issue for me. I tend to be more interested in an intriguing plot. The only thing that gets me is really stilted dialogue. Great review. I'll have to keep this one on my shelf for later.
Then I think you'll really like this! It was a beautiful read and definitely sounds like it might be right up your alley. It was definitely a unique novel. Thanks for the comment!
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Post by Emi_Review » 12 Sep 2018, 18:24

I love the idea that the protagonists aren't your typical heroes. I think this is such a clever and intriguing idea. That aside, I absolutely love fantasy so this book sounds great to me. Thank you for your review!

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Post by Samy Lax » 12 Sep 2018, 23:24

The fact that there are no explanations for some parts of the story might have me stumped too much to allow me to enjoy this book.

The way you have written your review is really lovely though.
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Post by godfroi469 » 13 Sep 2018, 11:52

I do like a dark fantasy with an anti hero story. Think I'm gonna add this to my read list.

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Post by Bonnie Shelby » 15 Sep 2018, 17:55

What an interesting storyline! This one sounds awesome - though it's too bad about the side characters. Thanks for the great review - I'll have to check this one out :)

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Post by Julie Green » 22 Sep 2018, 07:22

I enjoyed your review and I love the description of the Land of Gold....this sounds like a charming tale!
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Very intriguing and thought inspiring review. I enjoyed the sample of descriptions and am now putting this one on my to read list.
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Post by Sushan » 07 Nov 2018, 11:52

Seemingly an interesting fantacy. It reminded me of a queen who drank blood of young maidens to be young. Thanks for the comprehensive review 👍👍
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