Hey there guys and girls, I’m back yet again with a new review for your reading pleasure.
This week I have a bit of an older book for you, The Red Stone by Craig Smit (2007). I met Craig on line a few months ago and after we chatted a bit he asked if I would do a review for his fantasy novel The Red Stone, and the book lover that I am said yes, naturally .
Well here it is.
One night a young tavern boy is given a strange glowing red stone by a talking black crow, and before he could figure out what to do his life is thrown upside down. Plunged into a world of magic, monsters, knights and Kings, he must learn not only to use his own discovered magic but how to become the hero of two Kingdoms.
In the mean time the dark Count Ergol is amassing his horde of monsters and marching on the idyllic Kingdom of Elfwood, the first stop on his road to becoming Ruler of the all the Kingdoms.
Ok so this is basically an Epic/Heroic Fantasy, I have not read one in a long time, so this brought back a few fond memories from books that I use to read while still in school. I would say its most likely aiming for the same market as it is not a very intense story.
It’s simple, quirky and fun to read and I definitely enjoyed reading it.
The storyline is very simple, nothing to complex or confusing. Two armies joining forces to fight of the evil invaders and along the way new friends and allies are made.
A lowly peasant boy finds out that he is meant for more and discovers that he has great power just waiting to be released.
The flow is also very constant, moving from one place or incident to the next with ease and without cluttering the story with too much additional information. This does however lead to a bit of a down side for me , in a sense the characters know too much. As soon as a mystery pops up or something strange happens, a character explains it, although it is not annoying it does rob the story of a sense of mystery.
There is a wide assortment of characters in this book, from humans, giants, trolls, dragons, goblins, wizards and warlocks to some more creative alternatives.
My personal favorite was Berrinn, a bronze dragon that befriended Tennen, a wise and rather sly dragon to say the least .
The evil Count Errgol was definitely a bit of a comic relief, deviating from the usual dark and deceiving warlord that we usually find in such books. The Count is more of a spoiled noble with grandiose plans and tantrums when he does not get what he wants.
Our main character is the young Tennen. Starting out as a simple tavern cleaner, his journey takes him to all kinds of places, introducing him to many new people and friends, and bringing about his destiny as the keeper of the mystical red stone, not to mention the cool armor and sword he finds later on.
There is not a big change in him but you do see him become more enthusiastic about the new role he plays. You also find him becoming more daring, adventurous and heroic as the story progresses.
There is also his teacher Rimotar, a powerful wizard from the Kingdome of Melin. Rimotar both instructs the young Tennen about his new destiny as well as teaches him how to use his new powers as a young wizard.
There are many more interesting characters to talk about but I will leave them for you to discover.
There was also a small downside in the way the book was written. For younger readers and people new to fantasy this might not be apparent, but to those who are more use to reading such novels they will find that often comments, actions or gestures are accompanied with an explanation, something that in my opinion could have been left out as it was self explanatory in the first place.
All in all this was still a fun diversion from the norm for me. And there is a new book on the way, which I will definitely also read.
So if you’re up for a quick read or just simply want to escape into a fantasy realm for a quick bit this book will definitely work for you. It’s easy to read, has a quick storyline, and leaves you having a fun time.
I would give this book a 6.5/10 (7 if you ignore the downsides)
Way to go Craig can’t wait for the next one.
To order your copies, click here for US, here for UK, and for those in SA, please use the link at the top of the blog.