'Sapphire of the Fairies'

Review by Patricia Spork, ebook Reviews Weekly

Sapphire of the Fairies: Book One of Sword of Heavens by Richard S. Tuttle


"...one of this century's leading authors of innovative fantasy tales."

Richard S. Tuttle's "Sapphire of the Fairies: Book One of Sword
of Heavens" starts seventeen years after his "Targa Trilogy," and appears to be an excellent follow-up to that series. Characters are well fleshed out, through description and imaginative dialogue techniques.  Action abounds throughout the book, as do the growing relationships between the characters.

One thing I really like about Mr. Tuttle's writing (I've read several of his books), is how well he can describe everything without being overly prosy. But I was disappointed with some of the characters' names (e.g., "Pixy," for a fairy - so generic, to me, when I expect more imagination from this author); and the first paragraph of the novel, as I feel Mr. Tuttle could have hooked a reader much better by following up and emphasizing on the first sentence, rather than by jumping to the setting's history in the next couple of sentences, then introducing two characters, one with name, the other without. To me, that first paragraph was unsettling. But after muddling through it, the pace picked up and was maintained throughout.

Even though disappointment was caused, Richard S. Tuttle's imagination and writing talents continue to amaze me, as I'm sure it does his other fans. "Sapphire of the Fairies," in my opinion, is another writing success for Richard S. Tuttle, who I believe is one of this century's leading author's of innovative fantasy tales. I highly recommend "Sapphire of the Fairies:  Book One of Sword of Heavens," for the book is sure (again, my opinion) to become a collector's item in the future, as will all fantasy novels written by Richard S. Tuttle.

Synopsis: (May reveal much of the plot)

After the "Collapse of the Universes," caused by the "Dark One," days are dim without sunlight, and nights darker without moon light.  Life is chaotic and hazardous for the innocent in Sordoa,
as marauding bandits and armies raid and fight each other for a share of any bounty obtained by one or the other.

A prophecy foretells that children born in the year of the "Collapse" will rise up to slay the Dark One.  So Sarac, a lethal wizard, the "Dark One," has Wolinda (an evil witch) and his "Dark Riders" searching for and killing any child born in the year of the "Collapse".

Arik Clava and Tedi Markel - both seventeen-year-old sons of fishermen - were born in the year of the "Collapse". To avoid being killed by Wolinda and the Dark Riders, Arik and Tedi are forced to leave their homes.

When a bandit warrior, Garth Shado, saves the boys' lives, Arik and Tedi travel with the assassin and his gypsy woman, Kalina. Garth becomes Arik and Tedi's mentor, training them for warfare. During their travels, three other teens, also born the year of the "Collapse," join their small group. Tanya is trained in warrior ways, and Niki and Fredrik wield magical powers. The growing group becomes the "Alcea Rangers," when the young adults learn their destiny is to bring light to the world again. So a quest begins for locating seven missing gems for the "Sword of Heavens" - the only weapon that can destroy the Dark One, who is shielded by "Black Devils" - all powerful magicians.






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