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on Sep. 27, 2017 :
The book presents an intriguing concept – a magical world whose main characters personify the colours of the rainbow. What makes them intriguing is that, on one hand, they feud and war and would annihilate each other given the opportunity, but on the other, they are intrinsically intertwined with forces more powerful than themselves. This makes for some interesting dynamics among protagonists and antagonists that would otherwise be simplistically polarised.
The mechanics of the main type of magic described in the book – flow – are fascinating and very well thought out. They provide a meaningful context for the interaction between wizards of light, ordinary wizards and other users of magic, as well as numerous magical creatures that feature in the story. The author even uses it to hint at the broader cosmology within which the story unfolds.
The book feels oddly split into two parts – the training and coming of age of Viridian, its main protagonist, and of the adventures that follow. I say oddly because I don’t think this was intentional. Viridian’s training reads like it was necessary to set the scene for what the author really wanted to write about. It feels somewhat forced, unlike the rest of the narrative that flows effortlessly and sucks the reader in with its storytelling.
The main strength of the book lies in the quality and expansiveness of its world building. The world is well fleshed out, with scenes and locations that readily lend themselves to a screen adaptation. Each character and race of creatures has a definite character that sets it apart from all the others. This couldn’t have been easy to accomplish for a book that introduces so many of them in such a short space.
(reviewed the day of purchase)