“I want you to be careful. Words are powerful things, and can hurt people worse than any weapon.”
Blurb (Goodreads)- The world of Gaitan is used to conflict. War has been common place between the northern and southern countries for centuries, but it isn’t their hatred which led to the city of Morza’s demise. The Chaos Singers would say the Gods came down and cleansed the land in a brilliant light to prepare for the ending of the Era. The common folk would say it was an explosion from the evening’s festivities gone wrong. The truth is no one knows what happened that night. Except one. Searching for the cure to the Northern prince’s sickness, Caldor Lefwid discovers the footprints of a lone survivor in the ruins of Morza. With help from his trusted friend, Caldor begins the journey to find the last survivor of Morza and the cure the North is praying for.
Thoughts- A short, and fun fantasy novel if you’re looking for a fleshed out but easy to understand world, and quirky characters. Child of the Light is the first in a series by indie author D.M. Wiltshire, and it follows the Master Healer Caldor, his good friend Foe, and the young child of the light, Liora.
What I appreciated the most out of this novel is that this book is definitely a MG/YA fantasy book, but for a good portion of the beginning, it only follows Caldor (who is far from young). While I’m not the biggest fan of Caldor because he radiates “grouchy old man” syndrome, it was an interesting change to see from my typical reads. However, once Liora was introduced, the book really picked up for me. She’s a spunky 14 year old, who becomes fiercely protective over her friends. Liora is a very strong character for her age, and I can definitely relate to her speaking her mind, as I also have a tendency to do that.
The only thing about the characters that bothered me was the speech. The dialogue was written to show the characters all have a dialect from the certain area of Gaitan they’re from. However, it’s written with omitted letters in words, and slurred words (such as yah for you, ect). It wasn’t too bad in the beginning of the book, but by the end it became very exhausting to read, since every single character has the same dialect, even though they are from different regions.
In a general sense, I wanted everything to be fleshed out more. A lot of things in the novel are told to us, but we never actually see them in action or know why. We know that the South and the North are fighting, but why? How did this start? It’s then played off throughout the novel, as we never hear about it again. Even the King is very unconcerned about it. What is the mysterious illness that actually ailed Cael (the sick prince) for 15 years? What happened to Morza after the demise? What is Liora’s power actually supposed to be? What caused the demise at Morza? I simply wish that questions presented in the beginning were answered, or at least partially answered by the end.
I also was occasionally distracted by some odd point of view shifts. At times, it was difficult to discern one voice from another, and there were some consistency errors. Sometimes we would be in Liora’s point of view, with her thoughts, and then all of the sudden we would be in Caldor’s thoughts. Sometimes the shift would only be for one paragraph in the middle of the chapter. I wasn’t a fan of having to work so hard to figure out whose point of view the current section was in.
Overall, Child of the Light is a very solid start to an indie fantasy series, that has promise to grow and develop. The first book wasn’t perfect, but there certainly were elements that I loved and the interactions between characters were always very genuine. If you’re looking for a quick and fun MG/YA fantasy book, I’d give this one a go.