- File Size: 2537 KB
- Print Length: 309 pages
- Publication Date: February 24, 2013
- Sold by: Amazon.com Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B00BL9GBU2
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #10,392 Free in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Free in Kindle Store)
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|Print List Price:||$11.35|
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The author, Charles Yallowitz, skillfully reels the reader into the story right from the first page. As the main character jumps into action, the reader’s already in the midst of it. There is a great historical feel about the story, the fast paced action being accented with rich descriptions of a bygone era and plenty of mythical creatures. There are elves, dwarfs, gnomes and halflings and even zombies, all contributing towards a colorful milieu for the hero’s quest.
The use of present tense seems to be one of the tools to make this story stand out. It creates a sense of immediacy and urgency, which suits the story line very well. But it also brings the characters closer, creating a connection with the reader. And this is important in a book series.
Characters are a great asset to this book. They are entertaining and far from being perfect individuals. Luke Callindor, the main character, is far from being flawless, but this only adds to the charm of the story. I was pleased to discover that the female characters are resourceful and intelligent, especially green-eyed Kira, making “Beginning of a Hero” (Legends of Windemere Book 1) a great read for young female readers as well.
There are plot twists and changes of scenes, there are battles and there is even some romance, all that’s needed for an action-adventure fantasy.
“The God of Destiny laughs, which causes a tree to transform into a six-foot tall rose. “You mortals are so simple. Destiny is not so straightforward. I can put you on the path and prepare the obstacles to get you to the end of your journey as a stronger person. Yet, I am unable to control how you will respond to these obstacles…”
I recommend you find out by yourself as “Beginning of a Hero” (Legends of Windemere Book 1) is a promise at the foundation of what seems to be an interesting and exciting book series. Read more about your favorite characters on the book series’ website: https://legendsofwindemere.com/
I would definitely recommend this book if you like fantasy and adventure or if you’re new to this genre. Great read for boys and girls alike.
The battles didn't make as much sense because we didn't really know the characters very well and how their skills were developed to be able to win against all odds. etc
At the book progressed, the other thing that was starting to drive me crazy was the over use of assigning seemingly random 'titles' and then using them in EVERY instance something was mentioned. In the end I actually didn't feel too bad when the dog died as at least I wouldn't have to read the term 'noble shepherd' ever again. I reluctantly decided to finish the book to know how the final battle came out, but won't be buying any more in the series.
Top international reviews
I think the biggest issue I had was that he dialogue is a bit...obvious? Not sure how to describe it, a bit in your face - characters speaking to explain something even though they have no company. Essentially the writing is a bit clumsy when it comes to trying to ensure the reader is kept up to speed.
The way characters 'fall in' with each other and form friendships is a bit sudden which can also be grating for some.
The use of present tense seems odd, but I found I eventually stopped really noticing this as time went on.
I have actually read the first two books so far. I will probably read the rest which is an indication that the series could be worth a gander. But unlike other book series where I will read one book after another, I have taken breaks to read other things in between, so it is not gripping me like I expect a series to.
The story itself follows the protagonist, Luke Callindor, the youngest of the Callindor generations as he sets off on a mission to earn the respect that comes with his family name. His family are renowned heroes, as such Luke struggles against the assumed pressure of already being hero, and seeks a means to earn his name and the people’s respect. Of course, destiny plays a guiding hand in the life of heroes, and the challenge before him is a test worthy of those bearing his name.
Throughout the story Luke befriends and gathers a group of unlikely allies in his attempt to fulfil the mission thrust on him by fate. But such things themselves are not without a challenge. The information he was given was incomplete, and now he must fill in the missing pieces before it is too late, or a great and unimaginable terror will befall the world.
As a gamer, I wouldn’t be surprised to learn this author had, or does, indulge in either table-top, or console/pc rpg gaming. There are aspects to the story which remind me of those gripping adventures, something as simple as a yellow potion, or the design of the traps which the hero face, sing of both an amazing imagination and perhaps an area of interest to draw upon.
The interaction between the characters is brilliantly portrayed, making them not only believable, but also flawed. You will find no squeaky clean, turn the other cheek, holier than thou, hero here, well maybe one, but what do you expect from a priest? Yet still, each of the characters have their own vices, their own flaws and secrets.
All in all, I found the plot very interesting, in fact, despite my initial difficulty adapting to the tense, I am now on my way to buy the second instalment of this book and add it to my reading list.
This book is a fun and enjoyable read, and contains a wide assortment of characters, all of which bring something to the story. I would recommend this book to any fan of fantasy.
There is a wonderful variety of creatures... half-elves, dwarves, drites, undead... too many to list here. Yet, at the same time, very good character development among them.
The story grabs you from the very beginning and cleverly draws you in with a great mixture of suspense, adventure, danger, magic, humour, action, and even a touch of romance... all in just the right doses.
The book is very well written. There are a few minor errors, but nothing so drastic that it takes away from the story. They are more the type that result from editing rather than being grammatical errors; where one makes a change, but overlooks deleting a no longer required adverb or conjunction.
An excellent read!
Just for starters the various races take you by surprise with some unusual behaviours... if you think elves are all sweetness and light, think again. You wouldn't want to meet one in a dark alley ... or then again, you might...
The world Charles has created is completely believable; the unusual use of the present tense sucks you into the action very neatly, reminding me of the engrossing RPGs from a time when computer games were not all slash and burn, but required thought and the ability to type.
The characters come readily to life and evoke emotion of various degrees in the reader and you begin to engage with them very rapidly, willing encouragement, feeling frustration and often laughing with them.
Like Luke I am not sure that Yallowitz knew what he was letting himself in for now that the book has become a trilogy. But I think he can be just as proud of himself.
Click the Look Inside and start reading.. go on, I dare you!
I was not disappointed and found myself very quickly drawn into the world of Windemere with its myriad of characters, creatures and magic types I'd not read about elsewhere.
The Hero is a half-elf which makes a pleasing change from humans; and his friends are unusual when I think of their usual relationships and interactions in other Fantasy themed books.
The characters are all one-dimensional caricatures that make the worst possible decision in any given situation. The hero is alternately portrayed to be a skilled and powerful warrior who has to hold back to not injure a whole class full of advanced warrior trainees and dispatches hordes of undead that experienced paladins can't handle with an ease that practically inspires an onlooker to ballads, and as a silly little boy that is barely capable of holding the right end of a sword. The "legendary mercenary" headmistress of a warrior school on the one hand constantly states that the protection of her students is her highest priority, while at the same time sending those students into the forest to investigate terrible monsters (and not actually teaching them anything). The mysterious heir of the Duke apparently has a bodyguard with them, but that bodyguard is conspicuously absent in any scene the heir is in. The importance of not letting anyone know about his mission is impressed on the hero, but he blabs all about it to the first person he gets even slightly friendly with. The evil demon that one moment badly wants to kill the hero suddenly changes his mind once his opponent is on the ground, wounded and defenseless, and eschews the simple coup de grace in favour of... what? I'm not sure. But the hero survives, of course.
Most of the faults are glaringly obvious in the first few chapters (or even pages) of the sample; however I pushed on due to the good reviews (and the fact that the book is really cheap), wanting to discover this wonderful tale so many reviewers said they experienced. I hesistate to simply declare all of those reviews to be fakes, but I can't shake the feeling that at least a lot of them are, because I simply couldn't find it.