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Customer Review

on 26 September 2012
This aptly named book takes the Red Sun series to new and unexpected places.

It's not perfect, and at times the prose feels first drafty. Some of the dialogue is clunky, and the modern vernacular is distracting; ie; "What's up?" a character refers to their "rep," an angry boss yells "my office, now!" There are two mentions of Neandrathals, which seems to make no sense to this world. Presumably the dialect has been translated from a foreign tongue to modern English, but it can be jarring.

Newton deserves kudos for writing books like no one else. The introduction of what are essentially superheroes to a fantasy tale is risky, but he handles it deftly. Each of the Knights are compelling characters (though one wonders why there are only three of them.)

Urtica is an all-too believable villain; a petty, scheming greedy man who has risen to power via all means necessary. He doesn't get a lot of screen time, but he's written quite well.

The best part of this book, however, is the examination of underlying social issues. Even whilst reading the Knight's tales, we as a reader know that we are reading about the bad guys, the shock troops of Villjamur's 1 percent. That they don't consider themselves bad, that no one in the book does, is sign of a well-constructed story.

In short, Book of Transformations is a thinking man's fantasy, for fans of nuance and good characterization as much as epic battles and cool magic systems.
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