I was offered this book as part of a blog tour, in exchange for an honest review.
There are some interesting new workings of familiar material in Karen Furk’s debut novel; a multi-world mashup of fae, elves, humans and demons, soul-stealing, bonding, spirit realms and magic portals, chosen ones and warriors, spells and storm-riding… The story can barely contain all the detail that Furk crams into it.
Especially near the beginning, there were occasions that being introduced to such a profusion of new ideas (or new takes on old ones), at the same time as several new characters (along with all their interpersonal-relationships), pushed me towards information overload; it made me wish that there had been a prologue or some such, in order to introduce some of the running themes and basic premises before the story properly began. Hell, even footnotes would have been OK by me. On the other hand, the tradeoff is that due to this intricacy, the scene-setting is vivid and the characterisation / relationships are strong.
Unfortunately, despite being able to share her vision, I couldn’t feel Furk’s ‘voice’ very strongly; I am sure that her proclamation – or my understanding – will only improve as the series progresses. And there really are some great ideas in there.
A very capable debut; Furk’s vision for her Mask Chronicles is off to a solid start.
Soul Demons live off the souls of the living.
When Haydan’s home world is invaded by a soul demon seeking an item shrouded in myth and legend, his father evicts him and sends him to safety. His chosen one and warrior should provide reassurance and sanctuary, but neither appears to be working very well. Just when he thinks matters cannot get any worse his scheming grandmother arrives. She has her own plans that appear to involve him, none of which bodes well.
Diego feels confident he has the soul demon under control. Overlooking his devious mother’s involvement, he fails to appreciate that he is not only storm rider elder, but also an elven prince and certain debts are about to become due.
Lavinia worries about her grandson, but also who she left behind in the elven realm a long time ago. Tallin thinks she abandoned him and he is livid. She has everything under control, including Tallin…at least that is what she thinks.
They all need to learn afresh who to trust. With a soul demon on the rampage, an unleashed, angry and betrayed elven king and a long-forgotten mask surfacing, what could possibly go wrong?
The past is about to catch up with all of them. Nothing is going to go as planned because the mask and the gods have other ideas.
I do not get paid to take part in blog tours and this is my honest review.