A Quest of Heroes by Morgan Rice
A QUEST OF HEROES (BOOK #1 IN THE SORCERER’S RING) revolves around the epic coming of age story of one special boy, a 14 year old from a small village on the outskirts of the Kingdom of the Ring. The youngest of four, the least favorite of his father, hated by his brothers, Thorgrin senses he is different from the others. He dreams of becoming a great warrior, of joining the King’s men and protecting the Ring from the hordes of creatures on the other side of the Canyon. When he comes of age and is forbidden by his father to try out for the King’s Legion, he refuses to take no for an answer: he journeys out on his own, determined to force his way into King’s Court and be taken seriously.
But King’s Court is rife with its own family dramas, power struggles, ambitions, jealousy, violence and betrayal. King MacGil must choose an heir from amongst his children, and the ancient Dynasty Sword, the source of all their power, still sits untouched, waiting for the chosen one to arrive. Thorgrin arrives as an outsider and battles to be accepted, and to join the King’s Legion.
Thorgrin comes to learn he has mysterious powers he does not understand, that he has a special gift, and a special destiny. Against all odds he falls in love with the king’s daughter, and as their forbidden relationship blossoms, he discovers he has powerful rivals. As he struggles to make sense of his powers, the king’s sorcerer takes him under his wing and tells him of a mother he never knew, in a land far away, beyond the Canyon, beyond even the land of the Dragons.
Before Thorgrin can venture out and become the warrior he yearns to be, he must complete his training. But this may be cut short, as he finds himself propelled into the center of royal plots and counterplots, ones that may threaten his love and bring him down—and the entire kingdom with him.
I am a big fan of epic fantasy books, and when I saw this it piqued my interest. I bought this back in June for a couple of pounds, but I didn’t get around to reading it until recently. Honestly, I wish I’d read the reviews on goodreads before reading this book, as it was very disappointing. I know that this is a children’s book, but I have fallen in love with many a children’s book and this one really didn’t grab me.
I must admit, I am a fan of the cover. I have no idea how it relates to the one castle that is mentioned in the book, as I certainly never imagined it like that, plus this castle looks as if it’s meant to be creepy and interesting. I like the colour scheme for this cover too, and it is a very nice illustration.
This book has a very fast-moving plot. A lot happens in every chapter, and it’s hard to keep up sometimes. A lot of the events are quite sudden without much of a lead up to them and so I was left wondering ‘why did that happen?’ I guess that, for a children’s book, things can’t go too slowly, but I did feel that the events were rushed and that more time could have been used in developing the plot. The story is also quite a typical fantasy without anything particularly new. A young boy is unhappy with his life and then he suddenly finds out that he is “special” (and that part of the book is very rushed and sudden), and so the young boy ends up in the capital where he falls in love with a princess. Nothing new was added to this story, and so it was very predictable.
Thor, the main character, is very good at most things. He’s good with a slingshot, seems to pick up swordsmanship pretty quickly and can suddenly ride a horse by the end of the book. That development was very unexpected, because Thor grew up looking after sheep and doesn’t seem to have any horses on the farm. Also, as a relatively poor child who wasn’t loved much by his father, I found it very surprising that he could read. It didn’t seem particularly realistic in this setting.
Although I wasn’t a huge fan of Thor, I did like some of the characters more such as Kendrick and Reece. They were a lot more fun and interesting, especially Kendrick. They felt more genuine as I read the book, and I was far more interested in their story.
Another problem I had with the characters was that there wasn’t much development, with the characters or their relationships. Most of the characters seemed to stay the same throughout the book, and if a relationship changed it would be very sudden, such as from love to hate (or vice versa).
The Little Things
I was a big fan of the scenery in this book, and I did like the setting. It was quite different to most worlds, seeing as this one had a canyon that happened to be a perfect circle which surrounded the kingdoms of MacGil and MacCloud. It was nice reading about the geography of the world.
Generally, I wasn’t a big fan of this book and I don’t think I’ll be buying the second book.