Monthly Archives: October 2015

One Realm Beyond by Donita K. Paul, a Review

OneRealmBeyondOne Realm Beyond, Book 1 of the Realm Walkers series
Published 2014 by Zondervan, 414 pages
Genre: Christian fantasy, suitable for ages 12 and up

Cantor D’Ahma has grown into a young man. He leaves his elderly mentors and sets off to learn how to become a Realm Walker, using the gifts he was born with. His mentors don’t tell him much about what to expect, though. Just that the first thing he needs to do is find his dragon companion, and then he needs to locate the Realm Walkers Guild for training.

Cantor stumbles immediately across a dragon, but this dragon is clumsy. Surely there’s another dragon out there better suited for realm walking, and he keeps looking. But trouble arrives fast, and it becomes apparent that he needs the help of this dragon, Bridger, as well as some other new friends to even get to the place where he’s able to learn realm walking.

But the Realm Walkers Guild, he learns, is nearly all corrupted. They give him a teacher whom he trusts, but will his training mean anything? And will he and his friends be able to confront and change the guild?

I really enjoyed reading this book, which is rich in unusual characters. They have unusual names, too, such as the female dragon Totobee-Rodolow. The book is delightful in many ways, letting us enjoy the quirks of its characters–Totobee-Rodolow’s love for shopping, and a princess who wears her whole wardrobe at the same time, re-arranging which dress is on top to suit the occasion.  The story line is not high-action and occasionally lacks tension, but the richness of the characters more than make up for these.

 

 

 

Nameless by A.C. Williams, an amnesia story with plenty of twists

Christian sci fi author A.C. Williams puts out a gripping YA novel.Nameless by A.C. Williams, Book 1 in the Destiny trilogy
Published 2014 by Crosshair Press, 401 pages
Genre: Christian sci fi aimed at older teens. I’d give it a PG-13 rating for some sexiness, violence, and language.

Maybe Xander is her name. It’s the name on the shirt she wore when she was found, sole survivor on a derelict spaceship. Or, maybe it’s not her name. She can’t remember.

Xander has forgotten so much. Only tiny clues of her past surface in her mind from time to time. A salad made of apples with mayo? Chocolate chip cookies? Dumpster diving? All strange concepts to the people around her.

Those people live on a variety of planets and moons, none of which seems to be Earth. It’s a jaded future universe where people don’t know the word “God,” and everybody does what is right in his own eyes.  But Xander remembers God.

When a motley group of bounty hunters rescue her from pursuit and take her on board their well-worn ship, she begins to feel more at home. But the problem of who she is and where she came from still consumes her.  Why are there others out to capture her alive, at all costs? They seem to know more about her than she does herself.

This book is hard to put down, well written, full of memorable characters. I find echoes in it of Star Wars, Twilight, and Wizard of Oz.

Of course, being first in a trilogy, it doesn’t come to a ringing conclusion. The next book is coming out soon, I’m glad to hear!