Thursday, July 12, 2007

Blog Tour - Review of Fearless

There are some books that are a nice, gentle read. They quietly beckon from your bookshelf to spend some quality time with them.

Fearless is not that book.

It is the book that grabs you by your collar, sits you in the chair forcefully, and takes you on a white-knuckled ride from one close call to another. Suspense builds up, loops around, and delivers you to a breathless ending that leaves you wanting...nay-begging for more.

Or something like that.

Robin Parrish, master of Infuze, returns to his Dominion Trilogy with the sequel to Relentless. In the first book we meet the Loci, a group of Ringwearers who are Shifted into new bodies with amazing mental powers. They are supposedly the subjects of a prophecy guarded by the Secretum until the proper time, when The Bringer would come and usher in a new age.

Fearless continues this tale with the world in chaos. Strange natural disasters are occurring around the world, and fear grips the populace. In Los Angeles, the public has a mysterious benefactor with phenomenal powers they dub the Guardian. It is Grant Burrows, who leads a group of Loci to use their powers for good.

When an unusual event leads Grant and his friends to London, he is confronted with his destiny. Will he bring about what was spoken of long ago, or would he find the power within to be Fearless?

I read the first book in the trilogy last fall. I enjoyed it a lot, finding it to be an engaging read with a lot of excitement. Fearless increases this exponentially. Robin has really found a unique voice that keeps you glued to the page and your mind engaged. He has a habit of taking you to the edge of the precipice, only to move to another chapter (and often a different character and setting, keeping you hanging). If you like suspense, then this book will provide enough to satisfy for quite a while.

The characters are varied and have unique personalities that draw you in. A plot-driven book can take you along without letting you invest in the people of the story. The author keeps the action cooking all along while bringing us into their lives, fears, and dreams. Just don't get too attached, as he pulls no punches as the book hurtles toward the ending.

The book has many strong points, but no work is perfect. Some of the description comes across slightly awkward, but this may well be a matter of taste. Very minor complaint, as it is first and foremost a bold, thrilling story. This is a sweeping tale of the end of the world (perhaps?), and thus has some significant action. At times it gets a little bloody, so the squeamish may get a little uncomfortable. He has set in motion an elaborate mythology. There is not any overt Christianity for those who are concerned with that, but I believe that the payoff lies ahead in the final book.

(This is no criticism, just a little game I amuse myself with. I have a habit of noting the preferred descriptors, metaphors, or distinctives that authors like to use. I can't help it. In Relentless Robin favored the coppery or metallic taste of blood. This continues to a degree in Fearless, but he moves on to the imagery of blood splattered on another person's cheek. Play the game - see if you can find any others :D )

One more item - Fearless should be pretty easily understood by someone who hasn't read Relentless. Still, the whole story and mythology is lacking a little if you haven't read the first book, so just be sure to buy them both and enjoy the ride. I highly enjoyed this book. My only complaint is that I have to wait until next summer for the final installment. Boy, Robin Parrish can be merciless...

This review today is sponsored by the Christian Fiction Blog Alliance. Fearless will be featured in the Christian Sci-fi/Fantasy blog tour in about 10 days as well. I will have a special essay prepared, and hopefully another treat for those looking for more on Robin and his books.

3 comments:

  1. Great review. Best I've read so far. Thanks for all of the insight and detail. I've put a link to your review on my blog post.

    God bless,
    Dan
    www.danieliweaver.com

    ReplyDelete
  2. Dan was right. This is a good review. I'll have to respectfully disagree about how good it was, though.

    Though I liked it a bit better than the first book, it still lacked something. There are certain things about Robin's style that I enjoy, but he sure went easy on important themes, especially Christian ones. Not one of my favorite books.

    Karri

    ReplyDelete
  3. Jason,

    LOVED the review. So detailed and thought out. That's a rarity. Thanks for putting so much intelligence and passion into your work.

    Here's something to help you pass the time while you wait for Merciless: Visit www.robinparrish.com and check out the new "Guardian" Web Comic that tells an original story featuring the characters from the books, set between Books 1 and 2.

    (Oh, and you are correct about the biggest payoff being yet to come, but I would caution against getting your hopes up too high for heavy Christian theology or ideas in the final book. Lots of important values and themes are in there, but I'm writing for a very different kind of reader than your typical CBA fiction fan.)

    Thanks so much for helping to promote FEARLESS! Blessings to you!

    ReplyDelete