I’ve read several books since my last published review so it is catch up time. Today it is the turn of Starborn, the first in a new epic fantasy series by debut novelist Lucy Hounsom. If you follow this blog you will know that I met Lucy at a Waterstones event some months ago and obtained a signed hardback copy of her book. Lucy was extremely generous with her time as the audience picked her brains relentlessly on her route to becoming a published author and she was hugely likeable and eloquent. A review of that event can be found HERE.
You can probably tell, therefore, that I really wanted to like this book and be able to share a positive review with you all. Fortunately I have no problem in recommending it - it is well written and absorbing and an exciting introduction to a brand new world.
So, a little about the plot...
The story is set entirely within a fantasy world and revolves around the fate of Kyndra, young girl whose coming-of-age ceremony is disrupted when she inadvertently breaks an ancient relic revered by her village. She is forced to flee as everything she has ever known burns around her and two mysterious strangers give her little choice but to join their travelling party.
As Kyndra and her new companions embark on a journey to the hidden city of Naris, she knows that her life will never be the same again.
I found the world to be convincingly drawn and the characters interesting, particularly the two strangers who were travelling through Kyndra’s village at the time of her ceremony. Part-way into the story, Kyndra begins to have visions and I found it a little difficult at first to keep track of the multitude of characters across the visions and reality but it all came together nicely in a satisfactory conclusion which set up the story for book two. I have to say (without including any spoilers) that the ending surprised me a little. I thought that the story was going in one direction but that aspect of the plot was wound up quickly in the end and the characters went another way. In the next book, I look forward to Kyndra developing further and I hope to discover more about Nediah and Bregenne (the two strangers from the beginning of the story) as they really did become engaging characters and injected some depth and passion into the plot. In the meantime I hope that Lucy is enjoying her well-deserved success and is, of course, knuckling down with the rest of the series!!
On a personal note, the first story from my book INTO DUST can be read for free HERE. An old-fashioned fireside ghost story, perfect for Halloween.
I love most types of fiction - crime, mystery, fantasy. Oh, and historical fiction of course and middle-grade books and, well, you get the picture.
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