Top critical review
4 people found this helpful
A good read, but let down by a few small points.
on 12 July 2003
It would be wrong to say that I didn't enjoy this book: I did. It is written with care, and there are a lot of original and stimulating ideas in it ... but it was not for me a classic on the level of Lord of the Rings. For one thing there are too many inconsistencies, things that don't quite work - and although the author goes to great lengths at several points to try to explain over them, it still doesn't quite work. And I think it would have been better if some things were left unexplained, and more mysterious, because the explanantions sometimes really do not satisfy.
Similarly with the ending ... too many things are wrapped up neatly that might have been better left open. Even if there is not to be a sequel, it would have been better with a few loose threads for the reader to wonder for themselves what might have happened - it is hard to be specific here without giving any details away.
One other point that I was unhappy with, is the way that a minor character who appears to be fairly neutral early in the book suddenly has a largish chunk of narrative devoted to showing us how bad and corrupted they have suddenly become, before being killed off by the heroes. This seemed a fairly clumsy effort the soften the impact of the death a little.
In any case these are small points really, the story is the important thing - and it is definitely worth the read. The story was truly gripping, and the magical world of Belezza is enthralling and draws you in within a few chapters. More please!