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Falls the Shadow: The Chronicles of Midgard (Volume 1) Paperback – April 18, 2011
From the Back Cover
Year 848, Age of Man Everything had been taken from her: her family, her home, and nearly her life. Now, two years later, Maeja is still haunted by what the Empire had done to her. And with betrayal fresh in her mind, she seeks to reclaim a treasure before it falls into enemy hands.
Seeing unjust all around them, brothers Connor and Linkyn decide to take matters into their own hands, raining down bloody justice upon all they consider evil.
The lust for treasure is what drives the pirate Ril and his accomplice Mjrn to the castle. But an unplanned attack causes them to lose their treasure while gaining a new challenge.
A twist of fate leaves these unlikely companions the only defense the Midlands have against an Empire that seeks to resurrect Loki and create another Ragnarok which could plunge all of Midgard into a darkness it isn't prepared to face... --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
About the Author
Born in 1982 in Cleveland, Ohio, Melissa has always been an avid lover of fantasy. In her youth, she would write short stories and add artwork to them. While in high school, Melissa decided to change her career path from graphic art to writing, though she still enjoys drawing up a random picture or two, usually of her characters. During her younger school years, she won a Young Authors Honorable Mention for a short story she had written. She has also won a few Visual Arts awards during her school years and upon graduation from High School, Melissa was given a President’s award for Outstanding Academic Achievement. The first book she began to write seriously for publication was The Priestess. Completed in 2008, the book was separated into a trilogy and published in 2010, with a re-release that began in 2012 and changed two of the books titles. Melissa can be found on facebook and her blog is melissa-sasina.blogspot.com
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Top customer reviews
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This book has been sitting on my Kindle for probably several years while I read other books instead. However, I decided to give it a chance finally and am extremely glad I did.
To start with, I will say that the reason I didn't give this 5 stars is that I caught a fair number of typos and misused words (mostly I noticed multiple places that "where" and "were" were switched). I knew what was intended, so I kept going and I enjoyed the book regardless.
The story starts out with a section that gives readers a background in Norse mythology and the story of Ragnarok. From there, it branches out into the politics of her world and the history of the region where the story takes place. It can get a little dull, but even if you skim through it you'll catch up when things come up in the story. You might not catch all of the minutiae of the politics in the first place, but it still makes plenty of sense.
I loved the dynamics of the relationship between Maeja, Ril, Linkyn, and Connor. I enjoyed the fact that, at least for thus far in the series, the relationships aren't romantic. It's kind of funny to say that, but I think the interplay between the characters would be spoiled if there was any hint of romance (especially because of the family ties present).
I'm going to immediately start on the next book - I can't wait to see how the rest of the series unfolds! I'm a little sad that the fourth book isn't out yet...I'm going to have to wait to continue reading and let's just say I'm not looking forward to that.
I thought Sasina had an excellent idea and built a compelling world based in Norse mythology using speak stones, the gods themselves, the wolves of Odin, the Yggdrasil, treachery, betrayal, and subterfuge. Yet, with all of the potential of the plot, I felt the book came up short because of mechanical issues, poor editing, and improper execution.
Sasina has successfully fleshed out the different races of Norse mythology after the fall of Ragnarok. And, to her credit, each race is unique and fully developed. The reader can obviously tell that Sasina has done her research and had a compelling story line to weave the magic of the gods into the technology of man on Earth (Midgard). Which is a great achievement because creating a believable world is much harder than one imagines. Deceptive plot holes are always a victim of the novice writer, me included.
However, that being said, there were many things that kept me from really being immersed in the story. The first was that the book was either not edited or poorly edited. There were several misspellings, excessive reliance on adverbs (which became irritating), repetitive words (how many times do people have to `murmur' to each other), and a lack of consistent formatting. Furthermore, the image of the map of the world she created on the e-book I bought was blurry, keeping me from being able to refer back to it when the characters traveled.
Another thing that bothered me was that sometimes I thought the characters acted inconsistently with their goal. For example, Ril and Maeja are both inside a castle after the same treasure, competing against one another. Ril claims he's a pirate (but not a thief). Maeja captures the treasure first, but is then confronted by Ril with a mage gun. Maeja tries to run and flee but trips and falls. Instead of Ril knocking her over the head (if he didn't want to kill her) and taking the treasure from her (which any decent pirate would do), he stands there, laughing while Maeja gets up and teleports out of the castle, escaping with the treasure unscathed. I thought to myself, Ril is the worst pirate I've ever seen.
The final issue the book had was that there were so many characters involved (which I understand having a complex plot), it became difficult to really feel attached to any one character in particular.
In the end, I thought the story was entertaining. If it gets professionally edited, I would be happy to increase its score to three stars.
Though her descriptive passages sometimes lack a personal connection to the scene's main character, it clearly set off her in-depth knowledge of the world, its history, and the future yet to be told. At times the quantity of short scenes left me with a feeling of disappointment, but not so much as to distract me from the story's progression.
There were some misused words sprinkled throughout (i.e. `where' instead of `were', or `surely' instead of `surly'), and some places where the narrative could have used some tightening but, again, it wasn't enough to irritate or distract. My biggest qualm was the sometimes impersonal description, for this really limited the developing relationship between the characters and me as the reader. If she were to weave more of the character's voice into those narrative bits... gold!
All in all, Falls the Shadow is an intriguing fantastical tale and I am eager to read the next installment.
Overall Rating: 3.5 out of 5. I wanted to love these characters, but the impersonal narrative kept me at arms length. That is pretty much the only reason I don't give this story a 5.
Would I read it again: Yes, I do believe I would.
Would I recommend it to others: Yes. It is a fascinating mythos.
Most recent customer reviews
I like the background info on Norse Gods and Mythology.Read more
This is a well written, well thought out book.Read more