Saturday, May 12, 2012

Amber Magic, B.V. Larson

Today we are reading a rather short novel, by today's standards, called Amber Magic.  It is written by B. V. Larson and is the introductory novel to a epic series, The Haven Series.

The tale opens with the Giant, Twrog being tricked into murdering a man for Voynod the Dark Bard, who just happens to be dead. He is known to be a member of the dreadful Wild Hunt. the victim, Arlon, had entered the Deepwood hunting boar, in an effort to win the hand of Molly.  Unfortunately, Arlon is set upon by the Giant, and as he is dying, Voynod fills a silver goblet with Arlon’s blood.

Two brothers from River Haven, Brand and Jak Rabing are setting off late in the day, trying to get their offerings to the central city of Riverton before the full of the Harvest Moon. Brand sees a dark figure in the forest, one that strikes fear into his heart. The figure vanishes, and he tells Jak what he has seen and they continue on their journey to deliver their goods as is required of them.  All year, the people of Haven have known that something is wrong in the Deepwoods, stirring up the magical creatures. They have been plagued with reports of wolves, merlings and worse, but the two young men must continue on their journey, meeting with their cousin Corbin on the docks as they had planned. Jack suspect two families within their community, the Silures and the Hoots, of having had a hand in his parents deaths several years before.

They stay with their Aunt Suzenna and Uncle Tylag and several strange incidents happen, including an owl that tries to enter the room Brand and Jak are sleeping in. The man in black is also seen again. All of these incidents lead them to believe that the great pact wit Faerie had somehow been broken, despite the effort the people of River Haven put into gathering the large annual offering of the best foods and goods that they produced.

This is a completely original take on the world of Faerie as we think we know it.  All the dark things we have ever suspected, are here, but with a twist. The people in this tale draw you into their world, and you feel sympathy for them immediately, even for those whom we know only briefly.  Their names are colorful and so are the characters. I found myself living the story along with the characters, feeling the fear, the joy and the determination to survive as they did. 

Larson's style of story telling lures you in and holds you, compelling you to keep turning the page.  There is a truly original premise to this tale, and the ending promises fine things to come in the rest of the series. If you are looking for a truly wonderful, immersive epic fantasy, read this story. I promise that you will not be disappointed.

I have a new hero among the many great authors that I admire, and his name is B.V.Larson.  Larson is the author of many books, in the genres of both sci-fi and fantasy. He is the author of the fantasy series The Hyborean Dragons, and also the Sci Fi series, Star Force  I will definitely be reading the rest of the Haven series, and I will eagerly seek out any other work by Larson!

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