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Exmortus: Book One: Towers of Dawn Paperback – August 1, 2011
About the Author
Born in Madison, Wisconsin, Todd studied Ancient Near Eastern religion and early Judeo-Christianity at the University of Chicago before heading into the real world. He has since worked as a ballroom dance instructor, bass player, mediator, credit specialist, art preparator, janitor, journalist, copy editor, armored car money counter, mambo dancer and satirist. He lives in Dallas, Texas with his hyper-creative wife and baby girl.
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After the utter destruction of the Abby, Ashley embarks on a mission: to deliver a mysterious box to the Empress at the capital of the Empire, Helios. He sets off with three survivors, Steed (who bares a massive scythe as a weapon), Ziggy, and Simon.
As they travel they continuously find some sort of obstacle that challenges their true nature. Split between a half-commanding knight (Ash), who struggles with his faith, and a massive innate warrior (Steed), the pack of teenagers encounters a hoard of situations where disputes are common. The discrepancies are held by teenagers with on-the-spot teenage mentalities. One cannot avoid remembering one's own years of youth.
Besides casting an epic fantasy-story, the author does a great job at bringing fantasy down to earth, making you feel, as a reader, that a fantasy world is plausible and that it's just around the corner. Even more so, the language used by the group of teenagers is adept for youngsters of that age, more often than not finding yourself identified with one or more of the characters.
Weapon usage is a big deal in this book. Steed, a massive teenage-warrior, uses a scythe and afterwards a huge maul, with which he smashes, thrashes, slashes, pillages, and utterly beats the hell out of his enemies.
A definite key factor that makes this story stand out is how the typical fantasy being--the Orc--is presented. Unlike most fantasy stories that depict Orcs as being a race of stupid flesh-eating demonic-warriors, Maternowski avidly separates from the tendency and creates of them a race of thinking, rational, and avenging beings who like humans, seek for happiness and the fulfillment of their goals and dreams. They are the product of an ill-conception (I won't go into further detail to avoid spoiling the story for you), a particularity I found entertainingly-unexpected and thoroughly-enjoyable.
This is a must read in the realm of fantasy. If anything besides being grand, this book will keep you enthralled as you become slowly webbed by Maternowski's writing style.
I'd pass this one up but don't write the author off, give em a couple more books and it might turn into a keeper.
Todd presents a diverse group of characters that join the protagonist on the journey. The characters are well developed, they grow on you, they make you laugh and add a solid amount of depth to an already deeply engaging story. The imaginative world Todd has created is rich with the fantastical elements that makes a novel in this genre appealing. This novel is hard to put down once the story kicks into high gear and never really lets up at any point. I never found myself bored, distracted or lost in an overly complex plot during this book as I often do in large, overbearing fantasy novels. The pace was ideal for me.
I highly recommend Exmortus to anyone who is a fantasy fan. It's an exceptional debut novel by Todd and I am anxiously waiting for the next installment.
Most recent customer reviews
Seriously, Wow! I can't say it enough.
I'm a real romantic, so this is not my "type" to lye down with, but wow!Read more