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on 7 April 2000
Running away from her school after being unfairly punished for beating a social superior in a fair fight, Karigan comes across a dying Green Rider (royal courier), who asks her to deliver his message to the king. Karigan agrees, and spends much of the rest of the book trying to get to the king (resisting various attackers and assorted fantastic beasts). Karigan's own character is well-drawn, and she is sympathetically portrayed; some of the other characters (eg the king) could be developed a bit more, but were generally quite interesting. The plot is not all that original, and the 'twists' are mostly predictable, but it is well done on the whole. Indeed, the sense of 'pace' in the book reminds me of the earlier Robert Jordan books in the Wheel of Time series (before he got bogged down in the last few). A fair few nods to Tolkien and others in the field, but sufficiently original not to be a pale copy. The writing is good, there is a lot of action, some of the ideas could be better developed, but I would definitely recommend it as a good read. In fact, I couldn't put it down, and rushed out next day to see if there was a sequel (sadly, none as yet) - need I say more? Overall, a very good read, and shows good promise for future work. Highly recommended for entertainment value.
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on 22 February 2004
I picked this book up as a shot in the dark really - and couldn'd put it down! The style of writing is easy to read and keeps you hooked to the story line. A real stay-up-to-two-am-to-finish kinda book. My advice = buy it! I'm half way through the second book at the mo, and its every bit as good too! If you like pony-express meets magic and fantasy - this is the book for you.
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on 7 June 2006
A Dark Horse to watch out for. Britain is a fabulous writer who has unearthed the heart of a fantastic and truly moving story. Green Rider and First Rider's Call are both superb and only suffer from the fact that their existence is not widely advertised on the general market.

Despite the constant critical claim that their exists only seven original stories, a person only has to look at the stacks of books in a library to establish the mastery of artists.

Kirsten Britain's world is fraught with perils, loss and companionship through any fire. Many would read the synopsis and claim to have "heard it all before". But I assure you, pick up this book and find yourself engrossed from word to word in this fabulous fantasy.
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on 10 May 2000
A bit like the theory that there are only so many combinations of notes that can be used to make music, there seems to be only so many fantasy ideas that get re-used. This isn't really a criticism of the author - I enjoyed the book and it is well written. Its just it was missing something which would make it great. Read and enjoy, but it won't cause JRRTolkien to stir in his grave.
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on 29 September 2014
Very well written, with some really clever twists and turns of the plot, several great comic moments as well as gripping action. The hero of the tale, Karigan, is good in that she isn't a brave, superhero person, far from it in fact, and spends a lot of her time scared stiff but presses on regardless, which is true courage. She has given her word to a dying rider to deliver the message to the King, and she is determined to do so, regardless of her own fear. That makes her a very real character. There is magic and intrigue, evil dark forces, brave and noble deeds and a couple of superb semi-comic characters, the Berry sisters, with a staff of highly odd servants! Kristin Britain's writing is excellent in my opinion, never letting the story sag, and her image painting is very good indeed. I find that I get really involved with the characters, almost seeming to be riding along with Karigan on her quest, which is the mark of a good tale. I also like the strong female characters. As one who hates the 'big strong man has to save terrified little woman' kind of story, I love the strong females in this book, Karigan herself, Capt. Mapstone, Major Spence, ect, and the fact that many of the Green Riders are women as well as some of the King's elite swordmaster body guards. But don't think this is just a feminist story, it isn't, since there are an equal number of strong male characters, which is a fine mix and more true to life than many other stories of this kind. Ms. Britain has created a world where the sexes are equal and nobody thinks anything about it, which is the way it should be. I highly recommend this book to anyone who likes a good, exciting and interesting story. Well done Kristin Britain!
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on 8 February 1999
I read a wide range of fantasy novels and this one is just, absolutely brilliant. I haven't read such a great fantasy book for quite some time now (the last one being Terry Goodkind's books). Anyway, I think you should give it a try.. Hope she has a sequel coming and Ms. Britain, if you are reading this, please make it soon.
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on 10 July 2014
Absolutely loved this high fantasy story. It has all the typical high fantasy elements such as magic, kingdoms, epic battles, quests, plots and sub plots and a wonderful cast of characters who all helped to make this book so loveable. And despite the plots and histories and character backgrounds being quite in-depth and complex, the author somehow manages to weave all this information into the storyline in nice bite size chunks that made it easy to take in. This was very clever and made the story even more enjoyable.

It’s quite difficult to summarise the plot(s) of this book because there’s a lot to it and I could be here all day but the basic premise is this; a young girl called Karigan who runs away from boarding school comes across a half dead Green Rider (an elite messenger of the King) in the forest. His dying words to Karigan are that his message is of life or death importance to the King and he asks her to deliver it for him but warns her of foes who are trying to stop it being delivered. In need of an adventure Karigan decides to deliver the message and the story goes on from there. She has to face many trials and comes across various other characters along the way, some nice, some not so nice! Karigan’s journey is woven in with magic and battles and she almost loses the message (and her life!) on a few occasions, all of which made for some edge of your seat reading. There are other characters who’s stories the book follows also, such as Karigan’s father searching for her and also Mirwell, the leader of the people who are trying to stop the message from being delivered. There are a couple of other sub plots too but those are the main three.

I highly recommend this to anyone who enjoys a good high fantasy adventure and there are four more books in this series so there’s a lot more for me to get my teeth into!
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on 3 February 2010
With Green Rider I wasn't sure what to expect. I've read quite a few fantasy books, but I wasn't sure what this book would be like. As it turned out, the book was very good. Not the fastest paced fantasy, and definitely one of the lighter fantasy books rather than the heavier fantasy like Tolkien. It was well written and unusually structured - although it has the typical 'quest' style of story, it was slightly different not knowing quite who the enemy was.

The best thing about the book was that it left me wanting more. As the story ended I was convinced that there was more to come, and that I definitely wanted to read it! The characters are still developing at the end of the story, and you can imagine that there's much more to the entire story - there is a bit of a cliffhanger.

To be honest, the only thing you really need to know, is that I have the next book on its way in the post now!
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on 24 June 2000
I enjoy reading this book but the plots and characters seems to have been lifted straight out of other fantasy books. While not original it was quite easy to read and enjoy. My main problem with the book is that by the end the reader realises that there is too many hints in the story that strongly suggested a sequel. There was just too many things left unresolved.
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In this fantasy, a girl who has run away from school finds a dying messenger rider and agrees to take on his task of delivering a Royal message. As our heroine is a rich merchant's daughter she has a strong body and educated mind, but she's not equal to the evil that pursues her and threatens to subvert the king's rule. Her Green Rider's horse has a mind of his own, which helps, though he's not magical.

I was fine with most of the story but the last few chapters lost me to a degree. We've been mainly following one person and suddenly there's a whole slew of names and actors and motivations and double crosses, some of which had been slotted in through earlier chapters. These crowded pages didn't seem to fit with the writing style of the earlier story.

I also thought that our rider passed out an awful lot of times, considering she doesn't wear corsets. Would a young man doing what she did have kept passing out? Would anyone? This just seemed to be a way to end a scene/ chapter. If use of magic is draining someone, that is a partial explanation but it still seems clumsy. And our heroine is quite keen to stop for baths, feather beds, cosy chats, rich meals, regardless of what she thinks is following her. If it was that evil and powerful she'd have been dead.

I liked a lot about the story and adventure; lots of characters and a nice smart horse, the odd monster and plenty of trees. Paper making seems to be an important part of the continuing story. I'll be following the adventure and the second book is called First Rider's Call.
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