Valens Rise Book1(The Valens of Legacy) by Sherrel Lee
This book took me by surprise. It was one of my first forays into the world of self published novels. The main character was someone who I found so engaging I could relate to her immediately. And the story is peopled with a magnificent supporting cast. Bravo on a first novel. Looking forward to the next.
Jemma Nix -an orphan- discovers that she had a sister, Larinda, who has died and left her an inheritance. She has mixed emotions wondering if she should be excited to finally reconnect with her family or be angry that she's lost the real connection now that Larinda is dead.
She gets the message while she's at the place she's volunteered to help in the study of Precognition. She has to ask Dr. Horace Gruen, if she can take the day off. He's not happy since Jemma Is the only person they have to help find legitimate candidates for their tests. Dr. Gruen's assistant Astrid Van Horn had saved Jemma from the seeming endless string of foster homes and given her this opportunity; so Jemma feels guilty about leaving but this is important if it's true.
Jemma meets with the lawyer Jonathan Grey. Though it takes a while for things to sink in; Jemma begins to see undeniable truth that she's the one and she's inherited the family business, Legacy. She agrees to go to the estate and at least give things a try. Grey schedules a meeting with a Griffin Hawke.
Jemma suffers strange muscle cramps that are later tied to her future but at the beginning she has no explanations. The increasing episodes are not making any of the upcoming stress any easier to handle. The story moves a bit slow at the beginning as the reader is introduced into the perceived life of Jemma and her sister Larinda with Griffin Hawke as the guide to Larinda's life.
The reader finds out in a hurry that there's a lot more to Jemma in what and who she is, but for her there are many steps that must take place for her to be ready to fully realize this. Because of her troubled life it takes Jemma a while to warm up to the people of Legacy, but she'll need to do so quickly because the people she's trusted have been taking advantage of her.
When she learns that she's a Valen and that the Legacy needs her, that's when the training begins. The first thing she needs to do though is to learn to trust herself to rise to the occasion.
There are elements to the style of writing in this book that are sometimes a bit loose sometimes unorthodox, but the overall story tracks well and follows a progression that leads to the place where things start to really move as the pace picks.
Jemma will rightfully go through a phase where she isn't sure who to trust both because of her past and the fact that the people of Legacy are often treating her with kid gloves.
This book the first book spends some time building the world that Jemma lives in. A world of changelings mystical Manticores and Griffins and Phoenix. Add in a few mad scientists abominations. Even though Jemma is one of them she's unsure she is up to the task ahead.
This is a good Sci-Fi Fantasy with some neat ideas about the various creatures that live in this world. It brings some myths to life in our time.