For nine long fighting seasons, General Darnon and his men battled the same foe. Once a mere upstart, Zybaro was now a powerful enemy. He raided village after village in Malabrim, conscripting the most able-bodied into his army. Almost all of the Western Realm was now under Zybaro’s control, his forces ready to challenge Bericea’s army in the Eastern Realm. Darnon faced a difficult decision. Should he listen to the clerics, controllers of magic, and risk more lives? The clerics believed the Summoned Ones of prophecy could save the realms and unite their tribes and kingdoms. Unfortunately, the magic platform the clerics needed to call forth these beings was located deep in Malabrim. The journey to deliver the clerics into enemy territory and bring the Summoned Ones safely back to Bericea would be a dangerous one. And Darnon knew the odds were not in their favor.
Join the Summoned Ones, college-aged friends from a small Kentucky town transported to a chaotic world dominated by magic and war. Their epic journey will push them to the limits of their endurance. This unlikely group will discover truths about themselves and experience another world beyond their imagination. (taken from Amazon)
Thank you to the author for providing me with this book in exchange for my honest opinion. This book is available to purchase now.
Ah, the portal to another world kind of story! I’ve always loved that idea. Who wouldn’t want to walk into a wardrobe (or a cave, in this case) and discover a new world? As long as that new world is survivable, that is. In this particular book, four friends are transported to Bericea, a place torn by war. They are the Summoned Ones, part of a prophecy that marks them as saviors.
These friends are college buddies who have come together to carry the ashes of a common friend to his final resting place. Their friend had requested that his ashes be brought to an out-of-the-way cave, one that not many even know about. As the friends arrive at the cave, they find themselves thrust into a war in a strange place.
There were both things I loved about this book, and things that I didn’t. I loved that the Summoned Ones were college-aged, not children. It made it easier to relate to them. I also enjoyed the reason they were in the cave in the first place. A trip taken to honor a deceased friend was a creative idea.
The introduction to the main characters was a bit slow. There was so much information that my attention wandered a bit. It was very obvious that the author had put a ton of time into coming up with, not only the characteristics of each person, but their backstories, habits, likes and dislikes, etc. It made each character very three-dimensional, but I do wish the information had been delivered more throughout the book than all at once. Once they made it to the magical world, however, things quickly picked up.
The battle scenes were incredibly well-done. In fact, the entire world was well-developed and interesting. I’m a big fan of fantasy worlds in general, even more so when it’s in the midst of conflict (I’m kind of a horrible person like that), because it adds a sense of urgency that is fun to read.
I think Kail was my favorite character, a brilliant soldier in General Darnon’s army. He was brave and smart, and a lot of fun to read about. I also liked Pattie, one of the original friends. She was one of two female characters from Kentucky. The other- Gloria- bugged me to no end. She complained a lot and was very entitled. Thankfully, Pattie was pretty much the polar opposite.
This book is the beginning of a series that has definite potential. I’m excited to see what happens next.
Have you read this? What did you think?