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Book Review: Green Rider by Kristen Britain

March 16, 2012 Leave a comment

NOTE: Released in 1998, the first story of Karigan G’ladheon has since spawned three more books with the latest, Blackveil, released in February 2011

Warning: May contain spoilers!

Green Rider is considerably better than the last book I read and reviewed, Vengeance by Ian Irvine. The debut novel by Kristen Britain written more than a decade ago tells the story of Karigan G’ladheon, a runaway school girl who gets caught up in the events of a plot to overthrow the King of Sacoridia. She is pursued by those desperate to keep the conspiracy a secret after making a promise to a dying Green Rider to deliver a message of great importance.

The story bounces between the points of view of several other characters, but Karigan is indeed the main character of the story and most of the focus is on her. Most of the character development of Karigan is through her evasion of danger and getting out of tight spots. There are points in the story where things seemed out of sorts. Unfortunately, one of these points is near the beginning when Karigan stumbles upon the Berry Sisters. The whole encounter seems to have just been placed into the story and dropped out of thin air to land with a thud. The impression I was left with was that the entire chance meeting was a tedious way of discussing some back-story elements, particularly concerning the nature of the world’s magic as well as provide convenient and simplistic ways to help Karigan escape from danger later on. The entire episode left me drained in a manner than was reminiscent of Karigan after using her broach for its power of invisibility. It gave me a good reference point to draw on to sympathize with the main character at those points.

I honestly almost did not push on with reading the story because of this point. But I did. The story gets better as it moves on through a myriad of dangers Karigan faces to complete her quest as well as her struggle with not wanting to be the Green Rider everyone else seems to think she is or should be. The story borders on Karigan escaping from too many unlucky situations however, but it does tread the line just enough to not become wholly unbelievable. Some things like the however Anti-Monarchy Society seem to be just thrown in as filler and are dwelled upon too much for their minor role in my opinion. Also, the story seems to drift a little towards the end, especially during the final battle with the symbolism of a board game that makes its appearance several times throughout the book.  Although there are quiet a few pleasant twists.  Even if some of the foreshaddowing as to where the author wants to go is not all that subtle.

If you want to read a typical coming of age fantasy story with some unique elements and a hero struggling to come to grips with her inescapable fate, Green Rider could be up your alley. The plot is certainly believable enough. I give Green Rider three and a half stars.

Under The Darkened Moon – The Future

February 27, 2012 Leave a comment

As I am going through my edits on my novel Under the Darkened Moon, I have been thinking about the future of the story beyond the book and if there should be one. This past weekend I sat down and flushed out what todo with the world of Arrnna beyond the completion of it and IF I could get so lucky as to have it published.

Future books:
The Tainted Son (a further story with the existing characters and some new ones about 20 years in future)
Through Elven Eyes (a parallel telling of Under the Darkened Moon from the point of view of the elven support/non POV character but in her POV and retold by her in her elderly years)
Final Days of Ice (a story about the last humans/elves on Arrnna as the ice age consumes the world and their struggle to survive)

The Rewrite Shuffle

September 27, 2011 Leave a comment

For the better part of the last two weeks I have been writing and rewriting the lead up to the end of my novel project “Dark Moon”. As I have talked about before, I stripped out what would have been 30,000 to 50,000 words of story arc around the 100,000 word mark in order to keep the story under 175,000 words. Current projections have this novel coming in under 140,000 words.

This task however of getting to the end of the story has proven difficult. More difficult than I first thought. Read more…