I’ve been taking a break from blogging and reviews for a little while, but I mean to get back into it now. The next book I’m reviewing is The General’s Legacy: Inheritance by Adrian G. Hilder, the first of the ‘General of Valendo’ series. The series (which so far includes just two books) is high/epic fantasy, set in a medieval-style world of kings and knights and wizards.
As explained in the prologue, the land of Valendo is the neighbor and sometimes enemy of the land of Nearhon. The heroic general Garon once fought against the invading people of Nearhon with the aid of the warrior Quain and the mage Zeivite. The opposing country fought using supernatural monsters called Rippers, summoned by a wicked mage named Magnar. Garon and his companions defeated the invaders and brought peace to the land, and the book’s main narrative begins decades later when Nearhon begins showing signs of new aggression. The heroes of the former war are now gray and elderly veterans, training the new generation for the possibility of another war. The main character is Cory, the grandson of Garon, who becomes romantically involved with Julia, the princess of Nearhon, with the hopes of their union helping to keep the peace between their lands. The story sort of crawls along with that plot for a while, until things pick up when Magnar manages to bewitch a prince of Valendo, Pragius, transforming him into a necromancer who raises an army of burning undead skeleton soldiers to conquer Valendo. This is the most prominent use of magic in the book, and for that I suppose a reader might choose to categorize the book as dark fantasy.
I don’t want to give too serious of spoilers for any of my readers who might want to look into this book later, but one peeve I have with this book is its lack of resolution. It ends with a cliffhanger, and for me the narrative arc felt very incomplete. Readers have different opinions about cliffhangers of course, and some readers wouldn’t be bothered by it. The book had a neat premise for me, and that was a strength for it. Lack of originality is an issue I’ve seen with a lot of indie/self-published fantasy, and this particular book had a story that I haven’t seen before, so I was pleased with that.
One persistent issue I had with the book was the way that it used metaphor and personification. It’s good for writing to be descriptive, but this book used a lot of descriptions that didn’t make very much sense and overall diminished the quality of the book. There were also a fair number of typoes and editing errors throughout the book. Of course, this happens with self-published work and I’m certainly in no position to condemn.
To wrap this up, I’ll say that The General’s Legacy: Inheritance will appeal to fans of the genre, and is a promising first work for a fantasy series. I found it enjoyable.