4 out of 4 stars
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Quest of the Staff and Sword IV: Codex Nexus by T.K. Kohl is the fourth book in a series of the journey of some selected individuals who are to bring about the Master's divine plan of eradicating darkness from their world. On the one hand, it is the destiny of John, formerly known as Nathaniel Baker, known as The One, to serve as a guide to The Eight in their Quest for the Staff and Sword. On the other hand, Elizabeth, one of The Eight, the wife of John, goes along in the Quest. It is part of her Quest for her to travel back to the thirteenth century and experience the horrible events that led to the fall of Halcyon. Jena, on the other hand, is the first and last of The Eight who have volunteered to face, on behalf of others, all the Quest. It is promised that after the Quest, a king will be revealed, and the Dark Lord will be defeated. Luke, the Dark Lord, does everything within his powers to ensure the failure of the Quest. One way he does that is by destroying the womb of Desma, the woman destined to give birth to the king, and extracting a promise from the Master never to heal her. It seems the Dark Lord will eventually win after all, and the light will not be born. The One must disappear for the Quest of the Eight.
Kohl did a very good job in writing the book. The storyline is epic and extraordinary. He applied several literary tools like suspense and analogy. For example, when John led some of Luke's captives out of their detention center and when he solved their series of murmuring and complaints, bring to mind the story of Moses leading the Israelites out of Egypt as recorded in the Bible. Also, when he fed the people with one case of peaches brings to mind the feeding of the five thousand by Jesus with five loaves and two fishes in the Bible. The book is also emotional. For example, when Zandre lost her home, her newborn baby girl, and her husband.
There are several positive aspects of the book. First, the book subtlely teaches about the modern-day view of a woman and girl-child. In the land of Halcyon, women are not allowed to become knights. However, it is Elizabeth that saved Xanthus when he was attacked. It is also Desma that saved the kingdom and chased out the Dark Lord temporarily. The book also teaches that people should respect all persons and not look down on anybody. One would see this when John got a report that one of the captives he was rescuing had bullied a child.
I identified one negative aspect of the book. I got from the book that when Elizabeth visited the past, she experienced events that had already happened, and so, she could only watch as things happen without influencing them. However, it seems the author had been biased in the use of this tool. At times favorable to the author's story, Elizabeth was used as a major actor in the events. For example, when Xanthus was nearly attacked and Elizabeth slayed the men. On another occasion, when Perseus was being converted to serve the Dark Lord, and Elizabeth had attempted to stop that, the author used the character of the Master to stop her from doing so, part of the reason being that the event had already occurred.
There are only a few errors contained in the book. This shows that the book was professionally edited. I will rate the book 4 out of 4 stars based on the unique and extraordinary storyline and the professionalism with which the book was edited. I recommend this book to readers interested in an extraordinary tale of the battle between light and darkness.
Quest of the Staff and the Sword IV
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