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Thursday, June 3, 2010

"The Ninth Avatar" by Todd Newton (Reviewed by Cindy Hannikman)


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Overview: For Starka, an outcast accused of incest, life is about as simple as one could hope. A prophecy of the ascension of the Avatar of Darkness changed that. Starka, protected by the mysterious warrior DaVille, tries desperately to prevent the disturbing prophecy from becoming a reality. The world is thrown into chaos as the Carrion Army comes to power, destroying the rival nations of Brong and Rochelle. Wan Du and Mayrah are drawn into the conflict when their homes are destroyed and Cairos, a wizard from the betrayed city of Illiadora, likewise seeks revenge for his fallen comrades. As the leader of the Carrion army seeks to cover the world in death and darkness to become a living embodiment of magic, these uncertain allies battle against an inevitable conclusion. The Ninth Avatar is coming.
Format: Ninth Avatar is an epic fantasy along the lines of a sword and sorcery novel. It stands at 372 pages. It was published February 2010 by Trapdoor Books.

Analysis: Ninth Avatar is one of those books that the cover purely attracted my attention. The story that it contained was a well thought out, epic battle story that will attract many readers.

Ninth Avatar is Todd Newton's debut epic fantasy and it's a gallant effort.

The most outstanding thing about this novel are very detailed and descriptive. There is nothing left to the imagination as far as what is going on. The novel starts out with a Prologue that contains a very detailed attack on some of the cities. While the other elements of the novel are appealing to readers, the bulk of the novel's strength really lies in these types of scenes and the way that they are described.

While the storyline of Ninth Avatar fits the typical fantasy model, however the detailed scenes throughout the novel do make it stand out from the rest of the run of the mill fantasys. The story was fairly easy to follow, and very faced paced. However the pace of the novel doesn't serve it justice as it feels as if there should be more explained and at times certain areas seemed to be explained in a rush to keep the pacing quickly.

The characters involved are pretty detailed and three dimensional. There are plenty of every type of personality to go around, and no one character really stands out as being one sided or too flat. Every character from Starka, to DaVille, and Cairos felt as if they were their own character and not placed in the novel to serve a designated role in the story.

Although at first I was afraid of the incest plot element clouding my judgment, I don't believe it really effected my reading. Though I believe this element of the story might push some readers away, it could easily have been left out of the novel as much as it was in.

Overall, I enjoyed Ninth Avatar as a sword and sorcery novel. The pace of the novel really kept the scenes flowing and never let me get to a point where I was bored with the novel. Todd Newton has some amazing talent that I'm sure readers of fantasy will be coming across in the future. It'll be amazing to see what becomes of this talent and to see it channeled into future novels.

1 comments:

dining tables said...

I am done reading this book and I like it a lot. What you will read is something unique!

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