Genre: Science Fiction/Fantasy, New Adult
Type: Series, book one in the Catalyst Moon Saga.
Recommendation: Yes, if you have patience and do not need immediate satisfaction.
Pricing: Good, this is available on Kindle Unlimited. Paperback is about ten bucks on Amazon, not bad for a paper copy.
Summary: + interesting plot +OK world building -very slow paced +picks up at the end +interesting male lead in Stonewall -confused/weak heroine
In Aredia Mages are feared, and kept like prisoners by sentinels – Warriors sworn to protect the world from magic. So what happens when a mage and a sentinel are forced to rely on each other to survive?
Kali, a crippled mage who longs to escape her painful past, travels to meet a powerful healer in Whitewater City. But on the way her sentinel escort is decimated by monstrous raiders, leaving her with a single guardian, Stonewall: a sentinel with nothing but his chosen name and his faith in the gods. Together, Kali and Stonewall must learn to work together to survive a harrowing journey while demonic creatures from the north invade their lands.
Meanwhile, the mages and sentinels of Whitewater City are drawing battle lines and preparing for war – against one another.
What will await them should they ever reach their destination?
Catalyst Moon is the opening book in a saga promising fantasy and magic in a world where those who have special abilities are feared and imprisoned under the guise of protecting them and the regular citizens. In reality, they are shackled with a special element preventing the use of magic and stuck in cities guarded with sentinels and surrounded by walls made of the same element. All for the greater good right? Yeah. That’s what I thought.
The story sets out with Kalinda, a nobody mage, being transported from her normal home and her freedom by a caravan of sentinels to take her to one of the major mage enclosures. With the hope one of the healing mages there could heal her bum leg, Kali goes willingly even though most do not. Things do not go as planned and Kali and the others are faced with a horrendous attack of strange and unknown warriors. This story follows Kali and the one of the few sentinels that survive the initial attack, Stonewall, on their journey back to Whitewater and the people they meet along their way.
The first thing I want to mention about this book is the fact that I really like the different take on discrimination that is used to mirror actual historic events that have occurred. I always enjoy it when the author touches on real life issues in a fantastic way.
The world building for Aredia is OK, it explains who the mages are and it also explains the discrimination that exists. As far as the details about what the world looks like etc., the word minimal comes to mind. There is just enough to give you a taste but not an actual meal. There are several things that could be tweaked to make this book go from good to great. The entire book spans only a few days and it feels like it moves slower than that. Honestly, I had to stop reading and go do other things because I was bored. The relationship between Kali and Stonewall is intriguing but again moves very slowly and not the build into a delicious heat slow.. just slow. The last few chapters did however redeem most of the flaws I found in this book, I actually got really into it at that point. It is enough that I would probably read the rest of the series or at least try the second book to see if it moves a bit quicker. The issue that I have with the plot is that although Kali is built as a character that is developing and maturing into her true self, she is still completely naive to her own abilities and mages in whole are described as a community of people who have no idea what they are doing or how to even do it. I always look for a certain level of badassness that the under dog achieves that makes all the people treating them like crap eat their words and I didn’t really get that with this story. Stonewall, on the other hand, is built pretty well and stays consistent to his character to the best of his ability.
All in all, this book is pretty good. Slow but definitely worth a read if you don’t mind being patient and waiting for things to pick up.
Disclaimer: I was given a copy of this book for free by the author and volunteered to do an honest review.