Series: The Celestial Chronicles #1
Published on July 2, 2019
Published by Self-published
Format: eBook, 525 pages
Source: Review Copy from Author
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First sentence: The boy shivered and wrapped his cloak tighter around his body.
On first glance, the plot of The Reaper of Iremia sounds like something you have read a hundred times before. Calian and Reneia are friends and freshly graduated from the Military Academy. On their first day as members of a City Guard, they encounter a conspiracy. It will take all their skills (and luck) to survive and capture the culprits.
What Did I Like?
- Well written and easy to read. The Reaper of Iremia is proof that self-published books can be without spelling or grammatical errors.
- Calian and Reneia are just friends. None of them has been secretly pining for the other. It’s so refreshing to read about a purely platonic male-female friendship.
- Surprising. Kenneth Rocher did not succumb to usual cliches regarding the romantic pairing of characters and the plot development.
- Magic used in everyday life. The world has undergone a magical instead of the industrial revolution. I got glimpses of the equivalent of modern home devices (like refrigerator or stove) but fueled by magic. I liked how magic is used to improve the quality of life. The population is not suffering in a medieval setting, like in most fantasy novels.
What I Didn’t Like?
- The book cover is too dark and simple. I know it is shallow picking books based on pretty covers, especially since I read ebooks. But if I did not receive a review request from Kenneth Rocher, I would have never picked up The Reaper of Iremia on my own.
- The Chosen One cliche. Since Kenneth Rocher managed to escape the other cliches or twist them in an unusual way, I expected that he will surprise me on this subject too.
- Mages are so powerful, they are like an ultimate joker in every action. Whoever has one is almost unstoppable. Ok, there is a drain of mana and some crystals that negate magic, but overall, I did not like how mages provided an easy solution for everything. Whenever our heroes could not resolve some problems, a mage would jump in to solve it. I liked it better before the mage didn’t join their team and they had to work harder to win.
The Reaper of Iremia was a pleasant surprise that proved the old saying ‘Do not judge a book by its cover’ (or the fact that it is self-published). I enjoyed the story, likable characters, and intriguing world-building. The Reaper of Iremia does not end in a cliffhanger, but there is a war looming on a horizon, so I can’t wait to read more about it in the sequel.