Judgment of the Elders

Rated 4.33/5 based on 3 reviews
There are worse things than being exiled to suburban Long Island, and Caswel Esmar is experiencing most of them. Just because he violated rules about unauthorized contact with humans, the Elder Council stripped him of knighthood, deprived him of magic and transformed him into a human teenage girl. If only that were the sum total of his problems. More
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About Gregg Schwartzkopf

For someone who has a great marriage, adult children, a new grandchild, and a stable day job, Gregg Schwartzkopf spends a fair amount of time in realms of fantasy. He's been an amateur magician, role play gamer and, yes, a Mets fan (YOU GOTTA BELIEVE). Recently (that is, within the last decade) he decided to try his hand at creating stories in imaginary worlds that other people might like to share.

To find out more about him and his writing life, check out his site at www.gs1word.com

About the Series: The Exile of Caswel Esmar
Caswel Esmar, an Alfaran and rebellious knight, incurs the wrath of the Elder Council due to unsanctioned contact with mere humans. His temporary banishment to the Realm of Mortals in the form of a teenage girl sets off a chain of events involving high school power politics, serial deception, inconvenient spell casting and prevention of a cross dimensional war.

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Review by: Erica Lane on July 9, 2015 :
Caswell finds himself exiled, a consequence of his selfish, arrogant ways. Sentenced to fifty moons in the mortal realm, he is forced into the role of a teenage girl and all that comes along with it.

This is a fun, lighthearted read that can easily be completed in one sitting. More than that, I simply didn't want to put it down. The fantasy elements are rather light, the majority of the action taking place in our own world. That's not to say they are lacking, but there isn't as much world building as most high fantasy, and there are no info dumps.

Cass is a great character. Though the book is short, he goes through a transformation for the better without his actions becoming sappy or over the top. I felt he was just right, and he made a very amusing teenage girl. It reminded me of Coneheads or Third Rock from the Sun where aliens try to fit in among us, but everything that comes out of their mouths is awkwardly hilarious. Discussions about underwear and everyday things had me laughing out loud.

Other characters include Joan, who I genuinely liked. She's almost as clueless socially as Cass. And yes, Joan, girls do shop for underwear together! Lynera was interesting as well, though her parts were short. Between her and the Interloper is where the faery world comes into view, and it was tantalizing in its presentation. It left me wanting to know more about what's going on in the fantasy realm.

Highly entertaining, I'd recommend this for fantasy fans who aren't looking for something quite so serious. Yes, there are dark forces at work here, but this is meant to amuse and it does it well.

I was given a free copy in exchange for an honest review.
(reviewed 22 days after purchase)
Review by: Chris Hasselkus on April 12, 2015 :
Judgment of the Elders was quite good. Cassandra, really male but in a teenage girl's body, was an interesting lead character. Well written. Chris Hasselkus
(reviewed 9 days after purchase)
Review by: Bonnie Turner on Oct. 30, 2014 :
I loved this book! Judgment of the Elders is the first Urban Fantasy I've read, so I wasn't sure what to expect when I started. Some of the fantasy parts were a little hard for me to get into, but the modern day "human" scenes were a delight and easy to follow. The author, Gregg Schwartzkopf, knows his stuff and is an excellent writer.

Imagine being forced to live the life of a human girl when you're a male--specifically, Caswel Esmar te Willowwalk, disgraced Knight of Whiteleaf--an Alfaran, and nobility among the Fae.

It is my hope that in the sequel, "Cass" bonds so closely with his human friends that the elders will remove his punishment and allow him to choose between his former and his new life.

Well done, Mr. Schwartzkopf!
(reviewed 58 days after purchase)
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