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The Rise of the Wyrm Lord (Door Within Trilogy (Hardcover)) [Hardcover]

Wayne Thomas Batson

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.8 out of 5 stars  79 reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Rise of the Wyrm Lord, by Wayne Thomas Baston 18 Dec 2006
By Kevin Lucia - Published on
When Aidan Thomas learned he was moving away from home and his best friend to live with his eighty-year old ailing grandfather halfway across the country, life turned inside-out. Without Robby, it was back to being un-athletic, unpopular, bullied and pushed around. It was the end of life as he knew it, a new beginning he wanted no part of.

However, Aidan finds the sacred scrolls of Alleble in his grandfather's basement and embarks upon a journey to The Realm, changing his life forever. A place of ancient magic embroiled in war; on one side stands King Eliam - loving, eternal ruler of Alleble, and Paragor - once trusted herald of King Eliam, now evil ruler of the hellish lands of Paragory. In The Realm, Aidan surmounts challenges revealing his true measure, and when he finally returns home, he burns with the desire to impart King Eliam's love to everyone.

Things aren't turning out as great as he'd hoped. While leaving The Realm, he received a disturbing vision, one showing Robby's mirror-self serving Paragor. Worried about Robby's eternal destiny, Aidan emails repeatedly for weeks with no answer, and when he finally does get ahold of Robby, he's distant, guarded, and acting very strange.

Aidan is convinced Robby's in eternal danger, but what can he do? The rules are clear; King Eliam calls a person to The Realm once a lifetime - there's no way he can reach Robby's mirror-self with King Eliam's love.

Enter Antoinette Reed, Aidan's art classmate at his new school. When he sees her artwork - a rendition of Paragory's outer gates, and she sees his, The Seven Fountains of Alleble, they realize the amazing truth: they're both believers of King Eliam, true citizens of Alleble.

Even more astounding; Antoinette receives a ghostly vision of Aidan in warrior dress, and on the back blank pages of her Book of Alleble, the same poem that brought Aidan to The Realm appears. Antoinette has been called to serve King Eliam, but before she goes, Aidan tasks her with a desperate plea - find Robby's Glimpse, and somehow convince him of the truth of King Eliam's love, to save Robby's soul!

When Antoinette arrives in The Realm, she discovers another shocking truth: she is the mirror-self of Lady Gwenne, Aidan's close comrade and friend! Though heartened by this, as well as warmed by her quick friendship with Aidan's Glimpse, Aelic, Antoinette encounters a world in turmoil: imposters have spread everywhere, speaking falsehoods and lies, attempting to destroy alliances with Alleble. Even worse, rumors abound that Paragor seeks to unleash an ancient evil power locked away for centuries. The fearful question lingers: is the rumored Wyrm Lord a myth, a fable - or Paragory's new weapon against Alleble?

The Rise of the Wyrm Lord, the second installment in Wayne Thomas Baston's The Door Within Trilogy, jacks up the action a notch, successfully following up The Door Within. Baston continues to weave classic Bible stories into an intriguing tale, and makes this novel even better than the first - which is not easy to do - by going "off the Biblical" map with the Wyrm Lord and the Seven Sleepers' mythology. The second novel is an excellent tale, building on and improving The Realm mythos.

At first I was disappointed Aidan wasn't returning to The Realm¸ but this offers a fresh new story from Antoinette's perspective. In The Door Within, the characterization was solid, believable, but in this novel they grow and acquire depth in ways most Christian fantasies don't today.

The pace picks up, the threat of the Wyrm Lord and the Seven Sleepers looming over every page. One thing to admire: many writers make the mistake of showing off their hidden bad guys too early, and in this novel, we only get tantalizing, shadowy, menacing glimpses of the Wyrm Lord and his minions. This adds suspense; Baston is now playing the "cruel author", (which we all love so much), by making us wait for the last novel for the pieces to fall into place.

The Rise of the Wyrm Lord ends in a cliffhanger: we are left suspended, in true Empire Strikes Back fashion, without a clue as to what's going to happen next, as we learn that not only is Antoinette in mortal danger, but so is Aidan - even in the "safer, real world". All we can do is trust in King Eliam and his grace, and wait until the series concludes in the final novel, The Final Storm.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Better than the 1st! 27 Feb 2010
By Chris Kolmorgen - Published on
Rise of the Wyrm Lord was immediately more interesting than its predessesor. It snagged my interest and carried me to the end, though it struggled with the same problems The Door Within did.

The allegory was much more satisfying and well-hidden than The Door Within's, but the similarities to Middle-Earth have grown. Yewland is very much like Tolkien's Lothlorien, and though its inhabitants were never called "elves" they most certainly were. Just a well-educated guess, but the author's "Blue Mountain Folk" probably resemble dwarves in everything but appearance. I'd very much like to see Batson take the time to create a storyworld that is completely original, because his talent is very promising.

In The Door Within I liked the Mortiwraiths the best, this time around it's the Seven Sleepers--which are basically enormous demon-wolves. one scene in particular where Kearn and Antionette are swordfighting was very gripping. I'd like to see more of these types of things and less of others.

Rise of the Wyrm Lord had a stronger plot than its predessesor. I'd definitely pick up The Final Storm after reading it.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Never Alone 20 Jun 2012
By BookLover - Published on
The Rise of the Wyrm Lord is the second book in the Door Within Trilogy by Wayne Thomas Batson. I like how faith is presented in this fantasy. "Even were the hordes of darkness to assail you in hopeless demand of your life--even then do you swear devotion forever to the King?" -pg. 121. There are detailed descriptions about the scenery and action sequences that make you laugh and gasp. Fantasy fans will continue the journey with Aiden and his new friend Antoinette. They find themselves in many twists and turns as Aiden and Antoinette tell others about the King and Alleble in the Mirror (real) World. In Alleble, they are hard pressed to try to rescue a friend and prepare for the rise of the Wyrm Lord.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Can they stop the Wyrm Lord? 6 Dec 2010
By Seth Reid - Published on
Aiden, having completed his mission, finds himself at a new school back home. Meeting a girl that also believes in the realm that he went to, he quickly starts up a conversation with her. Visiting their house, Aiden finds that they all believe in the realm and are astounded at his announcement that he had visited the realm. However, they soon go from excited to scared when they find out that their daughter was being called to the realm to go on her own adventure. Will they see their daughter again? Will she come to know the truth about the realm that she grew up to believe in? Read and find out.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Adventures of a Headstrong Girl Who Does Something Truly Brave or Truly Stupid or Possibly Both 13 Oct 2008
By fredtownward - Published on
Mr. Batson takes another big risk in this sequel to The Door Within because he comes dangerously close to repeating the plot of the first novel, just with a girl hero instead of a boy. Fortunately, he avoids the error. Antoinette Reed is in many ways following in the footsteps of Aidan Thomas but precisely because her path to belief and her personality is so different from Aidan's, her experiences in the Realm are quite different. Where Aidan was struggling with disbelief and doubting of his own abilities, Antoinette is absolutely certain in her beliefs and absolutely confident in her own abilities.

The result makes for an interesting comparison and contrast as Antoinette faces situations and makes choices in a wholly different manner than Aidan did. In addition the threats she faces are much greater as Paragor's master plan begins to be revealed, events throughout moving with that relentless "Batson pace" that readers of Isle of Swords and Isle of Fire are well familiar with, and she also has to struggle with a favor requested by Aidan that may conflict with King Eliam's task for her. Another difference is that while it takes about the same number of pages for Antoinette to finally enter the Realm as it took Aidan, the wait is much more pleasant because instead of listening to Aidan raging and bemoaning his fate, we get to watch Aidan and Antoinette meet and become friends (and maybe something more?), and as is usually the case with the middle book in a trilogy, we don't really have an ending here, just a pause in the midst of ongoing disaster that must get a lot worse before it gets better.

Mr. Batson has created a fascinating world in the Realm, with similarities to but not quite like any other fantasy world I've ever seen, with Biblical references that are quite obvious to those who are looking for them but no stumbling block to those who are not. I bought this book shortly after I bought The Door Within as part of a promotional deal, but I never got around to reading them. Now I shall have to leap into the final book: The Final Storm.

Note: Other than a lower price the chief attraction of the paperback edition is the inclusion of the so-called "Lost Chapters", basically earlier draft versions of the first four chapters accompanied by author's commentary. The most interesting addition is "Farix's Tale", which provides something of an origin for this most interesting character.
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