Lost Lands by Shaun L. Griffiths
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
It's a world of magic and mayhem, armies and battles, good and evil. A mysterious evil presence is moving through the land, and it's focused itself on a single supposedly-dead girl, Holly. Holding on to her last shred of sanity, she mentally calls out for a single friend, Carter. Hearing the call, Carter braves crossing a magical border with a search-and-rescue plan, while trying to avoid a clan of Apes that are intent on ripping him and his fellow rescuers apart. And all the while, evil is stirring in the shadows.
The Good: Character depth, world building, and steady pacing. Griffiths makes a very determined story that steadily climbs its way forward. He frugally hands out details of the world, plot points, action and fights. The fights, as well, display a good understanding of group tactics and individual tactics. Very through.
The Bad: N/A
The Overall: If you're into BAMBAMBAM action, this title may not be for you. However, if you enjoy an unhurried narrative that swaps effortlessly between character development, plot, and world, then dive in. Griffiths did a steady job of making this accessible regardless of his previous book in the series, Changing Times #1, and yet the two stories click into place very easily. I highly recommend you read both of his books to get a fuller picture of his world, but like I said, you can easily start with this one and then go back to the first. I still maintain it's like Princess Mononoke meets Dark Crystal, and that Griffiths did an excellent job of weaving his concepts into a single, original, story. In other words? Read it and read it now.
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