KIRKUS REVIEW (it’s good!)

Kirkus Book Reviews



Debut fantasy novelist Lakshman offers a rousing epic in which supernatural beings threaten the world of their own creators.

Did gods and demons always exist, or did their believers bring them into being? That question springboards this Tolkien-esque tale, which includes plenty of fresh twists. In a threatened world called Edyn, archmages and adepts, including the powerful Silbane Petracles, train in a life-sustaining discipline called the Way. Azrael and Lilyth, an angel and a demon who lead the power-hungry Aeris, gear up to fight them in a looming conflict that will determine the fate of the world. At the center of it all is a student of the Way, Arek Winterthorn—a seemingly innocent young man of unknown, perhaps catastrophic, origin.

The text is deftly written… Lakshman shows a plate spinner’s skill as he smoothly balances the novel’s diverse elements and keeps the action rolling at a fast clip. The author shapes his ambitious, entertaining story with a lengthy menu of familiar genre elements—good and bad mages, anti-magic fanatics, dragons, dwarves and elves. He also includes bloody combat, a sentient sword, feisty princes and princesses, noble kings and warriors, and gates to other planes of existence—and even mixes in concepts from world religions and ancient mythologies. (The author’s descriptions of physical combat, training and strategy have an authenticity that’s reminiscent of Elizabeth Moon’s 1992 masterwork The Deed of Paksenarrion.)

An ambitious, colorful and highly readable fantasy epic. -Kirkus Reviews

Another Review!

Dragon’s Lair Books: Mythborn Review, by Michael Griffith

First off, 4.5 out of 5. Now to the review, this book was amazing and very refreshing. It is a true epic fantasy in the tradition of Tolkien, Jordan, Feist, and Goodkind. ( I know there are other great Fantasy writers but these are the ones that I am thinking of now.)

The story is deep and encompassing, there are twists and turns around each and every corner, some are predictable others are not. The world is also complex with many facets that make it to where you have to learn and grow as your understanding of the story, the world, and the nature of the world changes.

One thing I did notice about the story is that it takes place in two main locations but that is acceptable as it is the first book of the series and it uses the locations well to build the proper backstory. The story does alternate perspectives, and I believe it does so very well. These changes are either designated by page breaks and follow a scene that clearly indicates a shift in perspective and/or time or they are designated by a new chapter. Both of these serve to progress the story well as they allow the reader to catch up on events from another character’s viewpoint. It also allows the reader to fall in love with certain characters and to begin to despise others.

With that said my favorite character is Arek. I find that I want him to succeed no matter the consequences of his actions to either himself or those that he loves. I also enjoy following Ash and finding out more about him. I have some predictions about him and why he is able to do what he does but I am going to keep that to myself, at least until the next book is released. I don’t care too much for Niall, which is the king’s son. But that is just because he wants to be a warrior, but when given the chance to prove himself he freezes on two different occasions. I hope that his character continues to grow. I also find that I don’t like the Lore Fathers, but I think that comes from the fact that they are manipulators and do not give their underlings the information that they need to survive and thrive.

I truly can’t wait for the next book because there are many question that I hope are answered or at least cleared up a little bit. All in all, I just can’t wait for the next book and I am grateful for being able to read this story!

2nd review has been posted!

You can read it here:

Or read it below…

Review of Mythborn, Fate of the Sovereign, by Michelle Maxon

Hi All,
First, a disclaimer: I am one of the editors who helped go through and polish the book. Second, I am NOT a fantasy fan. These two are important things to remember when you read my review.

I was skeptical when I first started reading the book. Here I was, ready to edit a novel based on a fantasy, created by a video games developer from Harvard! Not quite the recipe for the next Dostoevsky. With trepidation on the first day I decided to give two hours to proofread some 25 pages, as a sample of my work and also to figure out, if I can get through the book or not.. I submitted 70 pages on that day! I just couldn’t stop reading. I was transported to a magical world, which was so easy to relate to, as the characters were so realistic. After that I looked forward to the days editing, everyday. I couldn’t wait to get away from my everyday worries, and get completely immersed in the beautiful world of Edyn. 

For an avid reader like me, it is important that I relate to the characters of the book that I’m reading, I have to feel their pain, their happiness, their anguish, their dilemmas, feel guilty for their mistakes and celebrate their achievements. I got all that and more in this book. The characters are so beautifully fleshed out in this narrative, that at no point can you be sure of what’s coming next. There’s always more to a character in this book than meets the eye.. till the very last sentence! One of the best things about the characters drawn by the author is that there is no villain, no character that is pure white or pure black. Everybody is painted in various shades of grey.. yes, EVERYBODY. All of them wrestle with a moral dilemma, and their struggle is so real. They try to achieve a balance between doing what’s right for the world as opposed to doing what they think is right or good for them. This gave the characters a complex depth that I just loved.

The reader is bound to experience each and every dilemma with these deadly monks and feel their anguish when they strive to figure out what to do next, all the while fighting with magic and lethal weapons. At one point I loved Silbane, at another I just couldn’t stop re-reading parts about Jaiden and I felt an instinctive protectiveness towards Arek.

The author spends just enough time on each place and locale to give the reader the flavor, but leaves enough unsaid so that you can finish the setting with your imagination. I really like that. The same can be said of the characters. He describes them, but stays away from specific details, instead leaving that up to us. I found myself ‘casting’ well-known actors and actresses for the various characters in the book and visualizing an entire movie by the end of the book!

The magic is awesome but more importantly I was amazed at the beauty with which every fight sequence was written. I found myself re-reading some fight scenes (something I have never done). There are a lot of twists and turns in the plot, and careful readers will be rewarded because the author does a great job of tying up threads, or being clear which threads are for book 2. I honestly can’t wait for book 2!

I had a small complaint; some of the female characters take until the latter half of the story to come into their own. You can see that they are going to be major forces, but this book sets the stage of a new world, and most of the main players in that are male. Not a huge issue, because, by the end of book 1 I realized that there are some amazing female characters that I can’t wait to read more about. Also, because of the way the author takes us back in flashbacks (called ‘Histories’) to events that are important, we see what actually happened. I really like that, because I get to see the origin of how some of these characters got to where they are, and what makes them that way. It’s an exceptional touch to the book.

I can honestly recommend this book. I always have the choice to not post a review if I thought what was written was bad, but the author here has done an amazing job in creating a world of action, adventure, and intrigue. He has made a fan out of me, and I’m waiting now for book 2 to be finished. I can’t wait to see what happens next!