An evil magician conquers an elven city with his orc army. Reclaiming the place seems like an ordinary job for a group of adventurers. Perhaps it is. "Shadows over Nothross" is an unabashedly *ordinary* fantasy novella set in the world of Avarthrel. In this tale, a group of *ordinary* adventurers decide to do something entirely *ordinary*. High adventure in the northern frontier! Thrilling journeys in the elven woods! Talking! Plotting! Relationships! Discourse! Orcs biting steel! But don't worry - there's probably something here that warrants actual discussion too.
cursing under some eaves somewhere, trying futilely to get his pipe lit.
Facyr listened to the Valntathalen family's tale. He came to the conclusion that Valntathalens weren't particularly fond of all of the formality; the little bits he knew of elves seemed to say the fairer folk didn't care much of formalities, anyway, at least not the kind of formalities humans seemed to love. To them, it seemed, style and royal grace were in their natures, while the pomp around human royalty always seemed somehow constructed and artificial under the surface.
Even when Aleln Valntathalen was a distant relative to the reigning King of Furinel and was responsible for running things in one quarter of the kingdom, it was difficult to tell what made him so royal in first place. Aleln Valntathalen was more of an explorer. He was a lord of frontier lands. In the middle of the mountain woods with lots of monsters everywhere, practicalities went ahead of formalities. Facyr had seen the same thing in humans before, wh
I take no pleasure in presenting a bad review from a young author who shows evidence of some talent and obviously tries to tell a good tale, but this novella should never have seen the light of day.
Reading like a bad Dungeons and Dragons game converted into fiction, the names are unpronounceable, the action almost nonexistent, and the characters so one-dimensional and the milieu so inconsistent, the book is just too painful to read.
Of course, looking at the advertising blurb, the author appears to be aware of the serious flaws in the story, but if you want to download and read Shadows over Nothross, please know that when the author says the story is "ordinary," rest assured that he is not joking.
2013 SFR GALAXY AWARD WINNER
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