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Dust of Earth: A Fantasy Adventure: Episode One: Quest of the Guardians Kindle Edition
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|Length: 240 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
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For King Jakin Daxx hardly any time has passed yet the entire world has changed. He must recover an ancient artifact of great power to set things right in this now foreign homeland where he no longer knows the rules or ways of the people. He knows no one and has to rely on the aid of people who no longer know him, while he tries to reclaim his throne. This is a grand adventure with giant bees, deadly forests, and hidden cities. A journey of discovery and family roots with grand adventure.
I bought my copy of Dust of Earth and Days of Chaos directly from the authors website -- questoftheguardians (dot) com.. [...]
S.R. Olson's Dust of Earth is a light-footed fantasy story with elements of time travel (which I particularly enjoy), different cultures, a heart-breaking quest with a lot of loss at its centre, and several good-hearted, heroic characters willing to put their lives at stake for what they believe is right. It is especially these characters that the story benefits from. Even during the most opposing circumstances, they don't stray from their path, never doubt what it is they need to do, never hesitate to stand up for a friend who needs help. I especially enjoyed reading about young Malakai who rises too quickly to a position of great responsibility he wasn't prepared for but still tries to carry.
Apart from several memorable characters, Dust of Earth shows off a set of interesting cultures, most notably a clan of nomad warriors whose ideal of honour and valor intrigued me. Olson manages to convey different ways of speech by modifying her writing so as to show different dialects without actually deviating from English. Seeing the different cultures interact and come together for a common goal was uplifting for me, especially in our time.
Finally, I really enjoyed the Eye-Trees, about which I read with a kind of morbid fascination blended with disgust and curiosity. This is pure creativity at work here, and I envy Olson's way of conveying this strange, foreign setting so easily and obviously. As if it really existed.
This story grew on me while I read. I wasn't aware at first that it was a series, and when I reached the end, I was both disappointed (because I hadn't realised -- although I should have guessed from the progress of the quest -- that the story wouldn't be resolved) and happy (because it means I can follow these characters I've come to know in the future). The quest goes on, and I'm looking forward to continuing it.
I think what struck me most about this novel is the characters' quiet heroism and the fact that they are not stereotypical -- they are like real people, not too loud, not too different, and you can get to know them almost like friends. This is, above all, what will bring me back to this series when the next book is out. :)