Author: A. P. Stephens
Narrated by: Richard Webster
Genre: Fiction, Fantasy
Pub Date: September 2009
Book Source: audio edition through Podiobooks, recommended by the author for review
The era of peace among the elves, men, and dwarves comes to an end when one of Londor’s twin moons disappears from the heavens. Without the moon’s balancing effect, evil forces grow bold, and warfare, sickness, and chaos threaten life itself.
Hearing the prayers of desperation that ride on the violent winds, the ancient wizard Randor Miithra, servant to the elf-gods, takes it upon himself to mend the world he has sworn to protect. The task will not be an easy one, though, for the wizard, too, has begun to feel the effects of the world’s imbalance. As Randor struggles to maintain some semblance of his powers, he meets a secretive band of colorful characters from all walks of life, drawn together by a common goal: to find the stolen moon, whatever the cost. It does not take Randor and his motley company long to see that someone or something does not want the moon returned to the heavens.
The road is perilous…the stakes have never been greater…will they find victory…or will they only find their deaths?
When A. P. Stephens first contacted me regarding his book, I was very interested in checking out his first book in The White Shadow Saga, The Stolen Moon of Londor. I am very much a fantasy reader and lover and this book sounded intriguing. Is it ever! I enjoyed listening to it from start to finish and can't wait to get my hands on a copy of the paperback to read through it again.
In my opinion, The Stolen Moon of Londor ranks right up there with some of my other favorite fantasy reads: Terry Brooks, Tolkien, Terry Goodkind... Stephens is great at giving a lot of vivid detail without becoming so involved that you lose sight of the story. As any good quest would have, there are many different characters, with varying personalities and talents, involved in this adventure to recover the stolen moon. Oh, and how about that for a fresh, new idea in fantasy? I am still anxious to find out where this story is going after the first book--how does one steal a moon, after all, even in a fantasy novel? But back to the characters--obviously they are not yet fully developed as this is only the first book in the saga, but already I can see that there will likely be some surprises along the way with this group. I can't even say that I have a favorite character yet, though I expect that to change as I continue reading the saga.
As far as audiobooks go, I have to admit I have never been too keen on listening to involved stories, because I worry that I will miss something. I was surprised at how easily I was able to follow and keep up with the events that were transpiring. I think it helps that Stephens does not get too involved in various events--the battle scenes are descriptive without becoming too bogged down, the world and events are presented in great detail without being wordy... In short, this book is well-written and to the point; there's not a lot of fluff here. The only thing I thought was missing was a more detailed account of the world of Londor itself. I didn't always find that I could picture it in my head, and perhaps that is something that will change when I reread the book as opposed to listening to it, I can't be sure.
I am most definitely looking forward to continuing The White Shadow Saga and anxiously await the publication of the second book. I would think that any reader who shares my affinity to fantasy works would enjoy Stephens' book and I urge you to check it out!
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