A review by Domoni.
I would like to thank the author for allowing me to read her novel in exchange for an honest and unbiased review.
The story opens with a prologue. A scientist is explaining how different dimensions have been discovered and how one of her children has caused a disruption. In fact a split was created and a pocket universe was turned into two. Now they are separate places with no knowledge that they have been split. The memories of the world before are simply myths and dismissals they use to brush away the history of what is no longer around. In one world the humans live and set about trying to govern themselves with an apparent class division and rebellion at hand. The second world is of dragons, ruled by an emperor and warrior class. This world too seems to be at a turning point, on the brink of a rebellion.
This story is rather unique. I suppose it is to be considered a high fantasy novel and those at times take meandering paths, which meant at times this was very difficult to follow. Especially since we seem to be focused on three different worlds and pop in and out of multiple story lines in each. The scientist pops in to narrate as she tries to repair the damage done by the split before both worlds completely collapse. This aspect is one of the only things that keeps this story meshed together. I like the insight that is received from the source outside the two disconnected worlds.
The human world has many varied characters though my interest was most piqued by the woman Cor who defies the laws which tell her she is just a girl with no value outside of child rearing. She is determined to discover the secrets her parents left for her and to learn about how the world works. She is receptive to picking up the scientists attempts to communicate, even if she doesn’t understand what is happening. When she begins ingesting ha leaves, her visions become clearer. She is a strong character full of life in a rather bland world of restrictive laws. The other human characters did not come across with as much dimension though they all play a great part in the world.
In the world of dragons, the scientist Atesh is studying the illegal ha plant with a hunch it may be important. When ordered by the emperor Zee to create a poison for her, he pretends to do so and continues his studies. It is Atesh’s wife Jwala who comes across as the strongest character in the dragon world for me though. She wants to support her husband but protect him at the same time. When she realizes the emperor and her enforcer Colonel Dronna are using her husband, she is angry and becomes an enemy to Dronna.
With so many characters and stories going on, I cannot explain them all. This story is hard to follow and kind of slow paced because it jumps around so much. Seeing as this is to be a series, I feel as though it may have been a better bet to write separate books for the different stories. Yes they all mix up eventually, but honestly it was hard for me to get through because it was so easy to lose track of everything and it really felt rushed and chaotic. Even writing this opinion is hard to do because to tell you a little about all of it, would take much more time than I have. All of that aside, it is a good solid story.
My rating: 4/5 stars.
This page contains affiliate links. Read our full disclosure here.
Welcome to my tour stop for The Banished Craft by E.D.E. Bell! The tour runs August 18 – September 1 with reviews, interviews, guest posts, excerpts and giveaways.The Banished Craft is a fantasy novel and is written for adults but is appropriate for mature young adult readers. This is the first book of the Shkode series and releases on September 1, 2015.
“A wonderfully delightful and deeply imaginative tale of struggle and the quest for knowledge, set in a well-developed and complex high fantasy setting.”
–G. S. Jennsen, author of Science-Fiction saga Aurora Rhapsody
“I love Bell’s sensitive and insightful exploration of compassion, connection, and relationships. The Banished Craft provides layers of thought-provoking ideas as well as good old-fashioned escapism.”
–Colleen Patrick-Goudreau, bestselling author of The 30-Day Vegan Challenge
Website | Facebook | Twitter @edebellauthor | Pinterest | Instagram | WattpadBell will be releasing her first Wattpad story on 1 Sept to coincide with the release of The Banished Craft.
$25 Amazon Gift Card (INT)
Ends Sept. 9th
Prizing is provided by the publisher and hosts are not responsible in any way.