Tale of the Tome
by Wil Knoble

"The NawGarahn took a defensive stance. Just before the second mutant reached him he dropped to all fours and whipped his tail into the legs of the attacker. The outcast stumbled recklessly to the ground in a cloud of dust. It roared in frustration as it got to its feet. Hisk started to cackle but screeched in pain as an arrow buried itself into his thigh with a shpack!"

When Dayfid walked into the inn one night, he wasn't just escaping the sheets of wind-blown rain, he was answering a call from a recurring dream. The story begins with a prologue where an unidentified man, presumably Dayfid, is traveling through a forest and escaping the memory of a broken relationship. Upon arriving at the inn, he joins with a ragtag group of undesirables, all answering the calls from the same BoneGnasher in their own dreams, they embark on a journey to help the child king reclaim the throne of Macomb. To ensure success on their mission, they must find the Tome of Knowledge, the greatest weapon against the evil Azinon and his plans to cast the kingdom into darkness forever.

The author has set up a rich story with interesting characters and a promising storyline. He has created a world where humanoid beings work together with unusual creatures; the supernatural is natural in this world. The author deals well with action sequences and world-building. A cast of characters, including the five original characters, offers insight into the story from each characters viewpoint, providing a multi-layered story which Knoble weaves through this heros tale. One problem, though, is the rich backstory for several characters bogs down the action and clouds the focus. More careful editing would have focused the multiple viewpoints to make this a much tighter story. Readers interested in Epic Fantasy novels in the same vein as The Lord of the Rings may enjoy this novel, with reservations.

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