It has been a long time since I have been moved by a somewhat dense fantasy novel.. but Justin Call managed exactly that. In fact, its density slowed my reading pace, but I was never bored. I was engrossed in every word.. every description.. every tale shared.. new and old.
I find, it's very easy in novels similar to this one, for the author's to lose my interest. They allow themselves to get so caught up in focusing on the world they're creating.. how and why it's different.. that they bog down the pages with excessive details. Don't get me wrong.. I love details. But there's such a thing as packing too much into a page too.
Call doesn't do that. Oh.. he gives you plenty of information. He offers enough to dig down inside and eat at you with worry over the characters' paths.. collisions you can see (or think you can see) coming.. and crises of conscience.. but he knows where and when to deliver it. He trickles those bits of information throughout his story with a skill I rarely see in modern writers. He finesses them.
The story is filled with foreboding and tragedy.. love and loss.. and not always in the ways you would expect. His characters grow and change, sometimes for the better.. others.. not so much. Some of them seem to waver on the verge of something great or horrible.. and surprise.. surprise.. not all of them take the same turns.
I loved this book. I'm not an emotional person really.. but it brought tears to my eyes at least once. It's not fast paced, it moves with the trepidation of it's main character.. young Annev, like it too.. is unsure what it will become. But every step is worth following.. and I cannot wait for the next book..