Layton Green takes readers on an adventitious quest for power, friendship and save a loved one:
The Blackwood brothers from New Orleans are very different but are always there for each other. Will dreams of a fantasy world and believes he was meant to be a hero, if only he get over his panic attacks. Middle brother Caleb tries to live his life to fullest and take a laid back way of life using his charm to survive. Oldest brother Val who has been caring for his brothers since their father died and mother became ill is hiding a secret from both of them. All three are about to be put to a test that none of them ever dreamed of (though Will wished for something similar). Enter in to a world where wizards rain supreme, religion is crushed down and a perilous journey must be taken not only to save their own lives but find out the truth about their father and save a long time family friend who help raise them.
Honestly, this is one of the best fantasy quest books that I have read in a long time. I may not dip in to this genre that often but I know what I like and Green delivered on so many levels. From start to finish with his writing, plot, characters and pacing of the book everything was right.
Green is known for the amount of research and detail that he has put in to his Dominic Grey series (which is one of my favourites) and it was interesting to see him put these type of skills towards a fantasy based book. You can tell that he pulled from different folklore and cultures to creates the monsters (and trust me some of these creature not not only unique but scary as hell) as well as the puzzle aspects to the quest that the brothers are forced on. You can also see it in the world building between the parallel dimensions which was one of my favorite aspects of the book.
The parallel dimensions or portal between two worlds is not something that I have read a lot of, but I find I really enjoy the idea of it. It was an interesting twist between the two dimensions to show what would have happened if religion was stamped out like witches or magic ideals. I actually want to know more about this world, the magic, the culture and the hierarchy system that is in place. All of these aspects are just touched upon in the first book as this book was Quest based, but I are really interested in knowing more.
Having the three brothers was an interesting choice and there were times when I questioned the need for all three. I am sure that they all have their roles to play, as they are very different in personality as well as strengths and weaknesses but there was times that the middle brother Caleb was more of a secondary character than a primary one (perhaps this will change in the next book). Trust me you do not want to be a secondary character in this book as well they get hurt a lot and not everyone is going to make it to the end of this book, which I am glad that Green is willing to take risks with his characters, all of them.
Fantastic start to a new series, this book really had everything that I was looking for when I read this genre with it's mix of fantasy and adventure.If you're looking for a new fantasy read and series to start you should pick up this book. I'm really looking forward to the second book, especially how this book ended. I need to start the second book really soon.