Review: _The Company of Glass_ by Valery Leith

April 30, 2011 at 1:24 am | Posted in Book Review | Leave a comment

Nine years have passed. The floating city of Jai Pendu comes close to Everien again. Tarquin the Free rides toward the citadel to warn the king of an invading army from Pharice. This is how The Company of Glass by Valery Leith begins the first book of the Everien trilogy. The author brings this different Epic Fantasy to life through its characters, setting and plot.

The book revolves around two main characters of different backgrounds. Tarquin is a jaded, tormented warrior once known as Quintar who blames himself for a failed quest eighteen years before that resulted in the loss of his Company of men. He tries to right a grave wrong from the past. Istar is the daughter of one of the lost company. She wants to prove her worth as a warrior and leader of men by going on a deadly quest. Quintar is a loner, running into different characters throughout the book but with few friends. Istar has the help of her companions Kassien, Pallo, Xiriel and Pentar who aid her through her growth. Ms. Leith crates memor ˇable characters through action and dialogue.

Next, the setting of the book helps to give it suspense. Everien is a land consisting of mountains and a high plateau. The people are made up of separate clans devoted to totemic animals such as bear, wolf, deer and others. Each clan has its own fighting style with their own weapons. Ancient ruins from the vanished Everien civilization are everywhere, giving the clans knowledge to explore. Pharice is a decadent empire bordering on Everien. This leads to trouble with other creatures. The author brings the setting to life with vivid descriptions that enhance the suspense of the book.

Ultimately, the plot of the book makes it an exciting read. The clans have been threatened for years by a species called the Sekk. These creatures enslave clan warriors making them slay their people in berserk massacres. A woman clan warrior unites them and becomes the queen. She seeks out the technology from the vanished Everien race to protect the clans from the Sekk. Her quest to J 8ai Pendu gained her entry to the ancient citadel of Jai Khalar. Nine years later she sends Quintar and his company to Jai Pendu, which gave them access to the Eyes to protect the land. Unfortunately that quest ended tragically with the mysterious loss of the Company except Quintar. Jai Pendu returns again. Istar wants to take her companions there to get new technology because the Eyes are failing. Quintar is drawn in again on a wild journey of redemption. All the elements of this plot are deftly put together by Ms. Leith providing a suspenseful, graphic adventure.

The Company of Glass by Valery Leith is a grand start to a different type of Epic Fantasy trilogy. Ms. Leith creates an exciting novel through her characters, setting and plot. This book is different because the characters do not win easily and the quest for Jai Pendu causes a lot of suffering. Interesting images remain with readers such as Jai Khalar’s shifting rooms and characters having to find a new route to places within the citadel. The book is an unforgettable beginning to be followed by The Riddled Night.

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