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Clarion of Destiny: Home Lost Paperback – April 9, 2011

4.5 out of 5 stars 20 customer reviews
Book 1 of 8 in the Clarion of Destiny Series

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Editorial Reviews

Review

★★★★★ I was swallowed up in this imaginative ADVENTURE!!

"This is volume 1 of an 8 volume adventure. I was unabashedly carried away into his warm and magical adventure.. Mclaren's character development, imagination and adventurous tale became a passion.........and I am waiting to pounce on his next volume and I am anxiously awaiting it's release. He is currently editing book 4. How do I know, because he responded to my email........(how wonderful!) and filled me in."

-Shema (Barnes and Noble)

★★★★★ I liked this alot

"I thought I read most of everyone's fantasy series- this author is new to me. What a nice find! I will buy more of them as they make their way here. More Barnes and Noble more!"

-jrussell1 (Barnes and Noble)

About the Author

Franz S. Mclaren was born in South Carolina and raised in Pennsylvania. He has spent time in 48 out of the 50 United States, and lived in Japan, Germany, and South Africa. He has also spent significant time in half a dozen European countries. All of this leads to a more sedate lifestyle now, but a vivid imagination.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (April 9, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1461081882
  • ISBN-13: 978-1461081883
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.6 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #13,695,410 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I'll be honest. I am completely baffled by this book. It starts off really well, with Leena following her destiny and accepting the Garlan branch before returning to her decimated village. After that...

Usually such books have a fairly predictable progression, the hero (or heroine in this case) sets off on a quest, meets people along the way, fights a few henchman, challenges the enemy, wins, and proceeds to whatever version of a happy ending the genre demands. Here, not so much. It stalled out at the sets off on a quest stage. To complicate matters Darius spent about twenty percent of the book recounting a story that didn't seem to have anything to do with Leena or her situation. It might become important in future books, but I saw no reason for it here. The book consists of Leena traveling. Period. End of story, pun intended.

None of this however is the worst part for me. These are:

1. Leena is The Chosen and is supposed to be a strong hero for the people, but from the moment she leaves her village she just follows one male and then another. She unthinkingly, and one presumes appropriately, hands all decision making over to them. Apparently, despite being the hero she can't be trusted to decide which direction to travel in or even when to stop and eat and she never tries.

2. Darius' story: I don't want to give it away, but he tells a tale that struck me as arrogant and ethnocentrism. I'm really not into that.

The book isn't without highlights. I really liked the idea of the hedge witches. The book was well written. I especially appreciated the prologue and the fact that McLaren was willing to allow his characters to fall to their absolute bottom before providing them with any sort of reprieve.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I wouldn't call myself a fan of the Fantasy genre - with that said, please continue.

Volume 1: Home Lost - I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. It is a great start to the series and was very easy to get into. It kept my attention the entire time and I always wanted to find out what was going to happen next. I really liked how the characters that are able to use magic had a limit to how strong or how long the spells were, and that it depletes their energy. I always assumed magic was magic and could just be used as one pleased. This adds a bit of a realistic element (yes I know magic isn't real) to the story and makes the characters believable.

The writing style is great. Everything seems so clear, yet contains its own complexities as to not insult the reader's intelligence. The plot lines, characters, scenery, and individual situations are well thought out. I really felt like I could understand from the inside what the characters were thinking/doing/feeling - very insightful. My only real complaint is minor cosmetic.. the cover art, which is my burlap reference in the title. I like real art as a cover and not just a scenery photo, but thats just me. ;)

Start your adventure: you will have a fun time reading this book. I'm off to start Volume 2 and will report back once I'm done.
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By Customer on February 20, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is more Darius' story than the main character but that's okay it is a good story. However the mystery surrounding the great wizard's actions is kind of annoying rather than intriguing, at least for me. What I really like is in the story is that the "villains" of Darius' story are not precisely evil. The merchant is greedy, the Colonel is a warmonger and the hedge witch is lazy but they don't do what they do because they desire hurting people. Leena's story is nothing remarkable, girl called by ancient power to take on destiny chased by a bad guy who used to be good. The only twist is we don't know why he has become evil and that as I have already mentioned is more annoying than intriguing at least to me.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Well, apparently people in that time and place don't wear CLOTHES, thy just wrap CLOTHS around themselves and they do it through 8 books. Is Umi a FAIRY or a FAERY? I like the story and it is generally well written. It should have been 4 books. Keeping the books to around 300 pages is just a money grab and the cliff-hangers at the end of each book are NOT amusing. Forcing readers to pay more to go on to the next chapter is just greedy.
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Format: Kindle Edition
Home Lost is billed as the beginning of an epic eight volume fantasy cycle, and it started off well. Our plucky heroine, Leena, a half-trained hedge witch, is introduced after an extremely gripping prologue (Orcs and Goblins harrying the last small band remaining free humans, all seems lost, when the young commander, Robart finally recieves his apparent destiny in the form of an all powerful magical....stick?) Okay, Fanstasy piece, I can let the All-Powerful-Magic-Stick thing, known as a Garlan Branch pass. Robart single-handedly defeats the Inhuman horde with the Garlan Branch, Humanity saved. AWESOME! Being a member of humanity, I happen to like not being enslaved and worked to death but ugly Orcs and Goblins.

Then we jump ahead some two thousands years or five hundred years, either way it was a long time. Leena our plucky heroine, the half-trained hedge witch is out in the forest, in the middle of the night, searching for an invisible tree (The Garlan Tree) in what is apparently heavy snow. Okay, great, nice adventure story, Leena will have to face the dangers of the forest and nefarious powers that be, on her path to this powerful object, right?

Nope. She bumps into said Invisible tree with in a few pages and easily dispatches the Great Wizards Giant Death Raven with her Garlan Branch. Then she makes her way home, to find her village deserted and only 19 or so of her fellow villagers can be located. (Because they're DEAD!)

The average 16 year old girl would be flipping the hell out. Not Leena, she calmly buries the bodys and sets about gather supplies for her journey north, obstensibly to find and free her parents and neighbors. By riding straight to the Great Wizard's gate...
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