ARC Book Review: Ozmander

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Title: Ozmander

Author: Luke Taylor

Publisher: Self-published

Publication Date: Expected 13th June 2017

Synopsis: The first book of The Woven Worlds, Ozmander is the epic tale of a young healer accompanying a mysterious man on a dangerous journey.

Rating: 5/5

Review: I am lucky enough to have developed a great friendship with Luke; he was the first author to ever send me an ARC (here is my review on Vault of Dreams https://cariadllyfr.wordpress.com/2016/07/10/book-review-vault-of-dreams/ including a Q&A with the man himself) and now I have been blessed with another exclusive arc of his up and coming book Ozmander. So, does it live up to my expectations after reading Vault of Dreams?

Quite simply, yes it does in every way imaginable. If anything, this story shows how Luke has progressed as a writer because, not only is weaving incredible worlds where magic is affluent and dragons are a form of transport, but he has also perfected his character development in such a way that they are incredibly relatable, not just for all of their strengths but for all of their flaws. What I loved about this book was that no character was the same or even remotely similar, they were all cleverly defined, for example, Rosalyn wasn’t your typical heroine full of courage who could defend herself and survive on her own, she was a young girl who had been thrown into the world after the safety of her Nomyd home and you could feel her vulnerability. Her growth as a person isn’t smooth sailing, as you would usually expect in many books nowadays, it is full of painful realisations and growth which makes her and so many of the other characters so relatable.

One of my most favourite characters in the book was Nurmedov. His character was perfectly imperfect; he would never stop eating, he always made jokes at the most inappropriate times and he never dominated Rosalyn, he treated her almost like his younger sister. His comedic presence was needed, it lightened the mood of the book where there would have been a danger of Xander bringing it down considerably. He made me smile and, despite his past, was a true gentleman whose philosophy on life we could all live by.

The language Luke uses is by far one of the best things about his books. When I started reading Ozmander, it made me feel like I was back home in the comfort and confines of Luke’s words. The description he uses is exquisite and makes you feel like you’re seeing the world through fresh, new eyes: “Echoes of humanity, glittering like stars. Languages I did not know, rising and falling with every color of the sun.” I have read a lot of book in my time but Luke’s use of language is one of the most beautiful I have ever come across and, whenever I finish one of his books, it makes me ache that I have to leave his world and his language behind. This, in my humble opinion, is what makes a book so great.

Finally, this book gives us all a message about how we can choose to conduct ourselves and our lives. Luke presents us with the idea that we are made up of three things; the Tempus (body), the Mystis (mind) and the Sanctus (spirit), all of which come together to form us. With this said, this book allows us to consider that we are controlled by our Mystis, that we are unable to see the bigger picture because our reason and rationale override our Sanctus which is one of the most powerful things that us humans have. The message of this book is a powerful one; that we must realise that we will never know everything, that we should be humble and realise that we, as human beings, still have so much to learn and that we all need to unleash our most strongest source of power, our spirit, to realise what we are all truly capable of.

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