I was given a free review copy of this book in exchange for this review.
This book is a first person narrative revolving around a female character named Ilan. She is a young magicker and unfortunately the Praetor has ordered their cleansing. As such Ilan loses her parents and she has to travel to another village to be with others like herself. On the way there the cart Ilan is travel in is attacked by bandits and she is the lone survivor of the attack. Ilan grows up with the bandits, but since they don’t possess magic Ilan has to figure out her magic on her own. During her time there Ilan inadvertently discovers a traveling magicker who offers her a chance to learn about her powers and to develop them. But to do so she has to leave her bandit home, a choice that would lead her to be hunted by the bandits themselves and killed before she could tell of their hiding places.
The book is short and feels like the beginnings of a much larger book. There are other books planned to follow, but part of me wishes the next book could have just been added to this one. Still the descriptions the author uses in this book are wonderful. There’s just enough to help you picture the world without it being overwhelming.
I didn’t realize that Ilan’s true birth name was never mentioned in the book. It took a re-reading to confirm this fact, a testament to the author’s skill to word things so I didn’t take note of it at the time. (The name Ilan is given to her by the leader of the bandit camp, since she refused to speak and give her name.)
Ilan makes some mistakes in the book that made me wince. I’m not sure if it’s because of her personality, or some bout of rebelliousness brought about during her teen years. However it was refreshing to read a character making mistakes and having the face the consequences of them.
I have always loved a good medieval fantasy book and this quenched my appetite very nicely. I’m eager for the next book to see what happens next. The magical bow presented at the end seems like a very interesting concept that I’m looking forward to the author expanding on, along with finding out what Ilan’s magical abilities will fully become.
In summary it’s a very good start of hopefully a longer story. ★ ★ ★ ★