This free series starter features the same world as the much-loved Emperor's Edge books but on a new continent and featuring a new hero, eighteen-year-old Yanko.
I found it very endearing that Yanko hopes to go to Stargrind but is incredibly nervous about the exam to gain entry. It's an elite educational institution, so perhaps he's right to be wary about whether he'll get to be a wizard. The selection process is tough and imaginative, but there are only ten places going.
Yanko's sympathetic backstory, with the loss of his mother when he's too young to remember her. It spoke to this particular stepparent, and I found myself feeling quite protective of the young hero.
I love a good coming of age story but this novel appeals well beyond the defined boundaries of the young adult market and more general readers would be well advised to give it a go.
The novel was an enjoyable read for many reasons, not least of all because there was plenty of action and vivid descriptions without too much dialogue getting in the way. I don't really like novels that tell the story almost entirely through speech.
I liked the gritty tone, which reminded me quite a bit of Django Wexler.
(review of free book)