Darkwater: Xenkur Chronicles - Book 1 Kindle Edition
|Length: 421 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
|Page Flip: Enabled||
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Top Customer Reviews
Missouri author Douglas (DW) Johnson has many facets to his artistic gifts – he is not only an author but also a painter, photographer, teacher and digital artist, and while he is well established as a visual artist DARKWATER marks his publishing debut. And an impressive debut it is. He not only practices his arts, he also teaches at University of Missouri while continuing to produce both photographic art and abstract paintings that have won a wide audience through his many exhibitions.
Douglas brings the spectrum of his visual arts fluidly in his writing. This first book is science fiction fantasy and he has a definite flair for creating characters and spaces and tales that at once hauntingly beautifully written but also spellbinding in their ability to make fantasy seem real.
His prose even on the initial page of this volume 1 of the Xenkur Chronicles sets a pace that is felt throughout the book – ‘Side Ho!” – The big man bellowed as he raced past me, his coach loaded down with anything imaginable. He could’ve been hauling carrots or carrying gold. On the North Road, caravans traveled regularly and you never knew what were the contents of the mammoth wagons. For three days now the caravan drivers had been shouting at me. I have yet to understand why. You could feel a caravan coming for miles, then hear it roaring down on you and finally smell it coming. If all that swayed no person from moving out-of-the-way, what makes them think screaming “Side Ho” would? From each caravan, I have also heard every possible form of profanity and disparaging remark screamed over the noise of the carts passing. I guess they have never seen a woman walking alone on the North Road. Though I find it impossible that everyone but me owns a horse or has the coin to book passage on the convoys headed to greater profits. Caravans were wonderful when I was young. Living in a small town like Overwatch, the caravans were both a lifeline and our only break to the boredom of settlement living. Caravans that rolled into town would bring all sorts of new sights and smells and wonderful treats to try. Often loaded with new foods, such as Chark, which is a wonderful deer jerky from the Sapphire Dwarves of Kinghold. Or sometimes they had this flatbread with all kinds of spices in it, which came from the City of Silver. Although I don’t know how that’s possible, as the Elven city closed to outsiders before my birth. But my favorite came all the way from the Tinker gnomes across the mountains and into the great forest. It was a wonderful treat. The cookie was soft and had cinnamon in it. Though we rarely got more than one, I know I could have eaten a hundred in a single sitting.’ We are there, in that fantasy place and ready for action.
The author’s synopsis makes share moments of the story – ‘Lacey Darkwater, a fisherman’s daughter, her world is nothing but questions. Alone and on her way home, she makes one small decision that changes her life forever. Now caught up in a continent of turmoil, she must weigh the decision between keeping herself and her companions alive and finding the answers she seeks. Will her friends, the tinker who trusts machines more than men, the healer who sees the world in black and white, the child of the dark and a drunk running from his past, pay a price they cannot afford. And then there’s what lies with the shadow...’
These are characters we want to know better and as there are already two other volumes in the series ready for us, it should not be a long wait. Art and craft combined make a very fine introduction to this new author. Grady Harp, June 17
The story is imaginative and gripping from the first page. Lacey Darkwater (hence the title of the book) is a young apprentice magician who stumbles into an adventure that is at times thrilling and suspenseful.
DW Johnson is a gifted writer, and I’m impressed by his debut novel. He has an eye for character development and action, keeping the plot moving along and the pages turning. The Xenkur Chronicles is off to a great start with this debut novel. I’m looking forward to the rest in the series. Strongly Recommended!
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