Sunday, June 19, 2011

WANTED: HERO Prelude to a Hero by Jaime Buckley

Publisher: On the Fly Publications
Age: Young Adult/ Adult
Species: Humans, Iskäri, Elävoimä, Evolu, Vallen
Rating: 3.5/5
Interest: Heroes/Requested Review/ 200 in 2011
Source: Ebook from Author

Wendell is a young man who learns what his potential is while on a strange, enchanted world with a funny old wizard and ugly troll to mentor and guide him. Prelude to a Hero, the debut book about how Wendell came to be the one expected to save an entire world. . . by accident. (Summary taken from goodreads.com)

I honestly liked this book much more than I initially expected. I'm not usually an "epic quest" kind of girl. The series has potential to be very popular among boys when it gets more promotion. I'm not sure what to say about the book. I don't feel qualified to judge boy's books most of the time as a girl because I feel like there might be something I missed in translation. So, if you are a boy or are very familiar with boys, try to bear with me during this review okay?

I was impressed with the world building in this story. At first the various creatures and customs were a bit confusing. Once I got into the story though, it was easier to understand. The biggest I guess, "hurdle" to get over in this book was the terminology. There's a handy pronunciation guide in the very back of the book to help, but remembering the various alien races was difficult. The descriptions of all the landmarks and various food items were so good! It almost made me wish I was on the alien planet to see and taste all of these wonderful things. The magic (sorcery?) in this book was intricate but easy to understand. The planet's histroy or mythology was the most interesting part for me. I wanted to know more about the sanctuary's history and especially about the dragon lords and ladies.

Wendell is definitely an "unlikely hero" type. I could guess most of what he was going to do, but I was still amused by him. One thing I do not enjoy is where the main hero is in denial of his role as hero or freaks out about all the "strange things" going on. I understand normal people would be horrified to find themselves on an alien planet. I know there is supposed to be worry and stress and being scared. However it can only last so long before it becomes annoying. I'm sure if I hadn't seen it used so many times, it wouldn't bug me at all. Wendell did eventually step up to become the hero of the underdogs and I was proud of him. I just wish there hadn't needed to be such a brutal lesson to get him there.

All of the side characters were well-developed. There didn't seem to be any "purposeless people." I really enjoyed Kyliene, as one of the only females I could relate to.The elders didn't really appeal to me. It seemed they were trying to be too mystical and controlling. They just had annoyance, amusement or anger in their demeanors. Chuck and Dax, Wendell's "buddies" were humorous and made the reading just a little bit more fun. Mahan, while menacing, didn't properly frighten me. His "shadow" underlings were impressive, but I would have liked to experience more of this ultimate bad guy. It's true that nothing is scarier than the darkness of the unknown, but only if you know to be scared.

Overall Prelude to a Hero was a very fun and mystical trip to the other side of the universe. The characters wew engaging and the magic was absolutely fantasitc. I would encourage readers to buy this hero's prequel (only $0.99 ebook) and all of his continuing adventures. It will be worth it.

Also, don't forget to check out Jaime Buckley's website. He has concept drawings for many of the characters, information on future books and a blog. Go, see more of Wendell and his heroic adventures now.

Teaser Lines: "Life has a complex plan that involves you and me. While we dream, work and organize, life makes its own tweaks- and many times circumstances might not turn out as we hoped. But life is not the enemy. It's not against us. Life provides opportunities for growth,  and strength or character.

Stop fighting your greatest ally."

Happy Reading,

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