ARC Review, The Initiate Crucible, by Brett J. Baker, The Freeworlds Chronicles, Vol. I, A Royal Crown Press Book

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Abby Ashford was a student at the Psion Academy, a school dedicated to training the young and talented to become Psion’s – telepathic and telekinetic warriors who dedicate their lives in service to the United Freeworlds. However, Abby proved to be a bit of a handful at the academy, and her life took a dramatic turn when she was shipped out to learn from Master Jax Idor as his apprentice.

But Abby’s time in training may prove to be short-lived. There is a crisis brewing on the planet of Mentallos – an influential member of the Freeworlds. Can Master Idor and Abby contain the situation? Or will they find themselves overwhelmed?

MY REVIEW:

First and foremost I must state this. Normally, I hate covers with people on it–they’re so over done. However, the art work of this particular cover is extraordinary! I love it. Perhaps, it’s because I don’t see too many books of this nature with anime covers, not that they’re not out there, but it’s an area I haven’t had the chance to review often. So thank you, Brett J. Baker!

SCIENCE FICTION FANS… REJOICE! Okay, this is one of the most fantastic science fictions that I’ve read in a long time! I’m not familiar with Royal Crown Press, but they have a winner on their hands. This book is exactly the type you find at Tor Publishing.  I can see it on their shelves.

The author knows what the purpose of  a prologue is and how to use it–well! Excellent narrative setting up the rest of the story, explaining the world and providing wonderfully detailed world building. I had a clear understanding of the premise and story-line, the break-down of factions and world building by the time I began the first chapter.

The author’s use of language is professionally written, precise and transitional from one interaction to the next. Ease of reading is without a doubt, well formulated by the author causing me to continue reading in order to see what was going to happen next. As for the plot, can it get any better? Star Wars meets Lara Croft!

The quality of writing is right up there with all the seasoned sci fi writers.

The pace… wow, the pace kept me engaged, moved along nicely and never a dull moment!

Plot development for this novel is one of the best I’ve seen in a long time. Insightfulness was evident in how the story was structured. Ease of Reading — so smooth!

Character arcs were extraordinary! I absolutely loved Abby’s. She started off irresponsible, immature and quirky, not to mention one hundred other ways, and, ended up reaching goals and developing (don’t want to spoil things) into an amazing finish.

Relationships involving  the Protagonist were excellently conceived, the interactions often funny or breath-taking. I especially like the Protagonist and Antagonist banter. Even the other relationships or minor encounters are enjoyable. As the story develops I found a few very minor comma and semi-colon issues, but this novel is well put together. The author has a gift for story-telling.

The fight scenes couldn’t be better. I was there right beside Abby and the others lending a hand, really, I was. I could hear the clashes and shouts of alarm and smell smoke and see the blood flowing, ew! The author succeeded in his #1 goal, to write a book that makes the reader feel that they’re invested in the story, that they are suddenly there participating with the main character, and through the style of writing, able to envision everything happening. Well done!

There’s so much I liked about this book, but I can’t go into details without spoiling them for you readers. I will only say, READ THE BOOK!

If I could give a ten for this book I would, but since I only rate up to five:

5-Star-Logo-2

825857.nbc-transparent-apple-2014For being one of my FAVS!

3a8bfaa6b41e4e78866a99ee5e9ab703For giving the readers the COMPLETE PACKAGE!

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