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Quin With a Purpose
on Dec. 27, 2011 :
Culture, family, storyteller and tradition, all truly the beauty of a tribe and how they bring you joy.
Step into a place that see the meaning of life, who deserves life, and how now, you can take advantage of a great storyteller who presents the tribe to YOU.
(reviewed long after purchase)
on Dec. 15, 2011 :
Jakan has a fulfilling life. He is a father and a husband, and more, he is Treespeaker to his people, the fifth tribe of Arrakesh. He interprets the will of Arrakesh, helping his people to thrive in their forest home. One day, a stranger named Beldror arrives from the outside. The villagers make him welcome, but Jakan senses that this visitor is hiding something dark. Jakan's worst fears are confirmed when Beldror uses his powers to turn the minds of the villagers against Jakan, even his own son, Dovan. Jakan is driven from the forest. It is up to Jakan to follow Arrakesh's last words of guidance in the hopes that he can wrest power back from Beldror before the Arrakeshi and their way of life are destroyed.
Treespeaker is a fantasy in the classic sense: It's set in a world completely unlike our own. Its populated by people with magical powers and it harbours strange creatures. But like any good fantasy, in Katie W. Stewart's book, readers find a deliberately crafted story that explores themes that are all too human: greed, lust for power, trust, and submission to the will of a higher power, to name a few.
However, readers should be prepared to tackle a few stumbling blocks along the way. First, Treespeaker suffers from a lack of subplot, which means that although the book is well-written, reading it is like travelling a straight path bordered by hedges. You move forward toward your destination, but there's no opportunity to pop off and explore something interesting along the way. And second, while the plot does provide a few surprising twists, Stewart's rendering of some of the more dramatic scenes saps a lot of the excitement. I found it difficult to summon up more than an academic interest in the plights of the characters.
Overall, I suggest this book for fans of fantasy who want a classic good vs. evil story with a modern ending. But, if you're looking for a nuanced study of human nature, then I suggest waiting a little while for Stewart to come out with something new; I have a feeling that she'll improve as she goes along.
(reviewed long after purchase)
Amos T. Fairchild
on Sep. 23, 2011 :
Jakan's people live a peaceful existence at one with their world and their forest, but that is threatened with the arrival of a mysterious stranger. The village 'treespeaker' and spiritual leader, Jakan, must battle great loss, both of love and the respect of his peers, to save his world, his people' and his beloved forest. Meanwhile his son, Dovan, must find his place within a troubled land.
This is a very refreshing tale that expressed themes which I found close to my heart. It is not a story of great battle and traditional heroes in shining armour, but rather the struggle of real people in a world rich in culture and its own unique and subtle magic. The story starts at a steady pace allowing the reader to know the well rounded and sometimes flawed characters well, and yet it is quite a page turner once the intrigue begins to build.
I did get briefly lost amongst the many names early on in the piece as there were quite a few, but this was not a problem as the novel progressed and the key players became obvious. Other than that I felt this was well written and well presented, which is always tricky in the electronic format that I read the work in.
I am kind of hoping there might be a sequel as there seems to be a seed left there that seems very promising and I would love to learn more of the wider world outside the forest. If not, then I'm sure the author has something else special on the way.
(reviewed within a month of purchase)
Margaret (Literary Chanteuse)
on June 11, 2011 :
Similar to folklore passed down from generation to generation this is great story telling at it's finest.
(reviewed within a week of purchase)