ACROSS THE FACE OF THE WORLD

Kirkpatrick spent a lot of time developing this world from coast to coast and kingdom to kingdom, and he can describe everything he imagines in such beautifully vivid detail that, at times, it was breathtaking and I could imagine myself surrounded by his gorgeous and grim landscapes. Unfortunately, that’s about where the excitement ends.

The pacing of the story is sluggish and the characters are immature and unlikeable. The plot is derivative of Lord of the Rings, the method of storytelling is reminiscent of the Wheel of Time, and the mythology is taken right from the Bible without even an attempt to add a little something original to it. Throughout most of the novel it felt like the story was just going on and on and on and…

There are moments of excitement and adventure scattered throughout, though, and when they happen they make you actually want to keep reading. The conclusion is pretty intense and it does what any good series should do: leave you wanting to know what happens next. The only thing I worry about is that whatever happens next won’t pay off and I’ll have to battle to keep my eyes open through another 600 pages where barely anything of consequence transpires.

Russell Kirkpatrick is a sound writer with a great vocabulary; I just hope he improves upon his storytelling abilities in the next book. The good news is that I do still plan to read it.

2 out of 5.

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