78. Tarnish- J.D Brink

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Title: Tarnish

Author: J.D Brink

Rating: 

On the Shelves: Fiction>Young Adult>  Netgalley/Arc Reviews/ Fantasy

What kind of hero would you be?

Silver, they call it, the light of the full moon: celestial magic that changes men into beasts and calls the dead from their graves—and young men to their destiny…

When his village is attacked by creatures from Blood Marsh, Billy Cole volunteers to find help. But it’ll take more than a sword and the inspiring tales of his legendary idols to survive the harsh world beyond Redfield. Taking the name Wil Thunderstrike, he sets off to save his home and begin his own heroic legacy.

On Fate’s fickle course, however, sixteen-springs-old Wil Thunderstrike will become a storyteller, adventurer, and thief; discover romance, danger, and betrayal; and return home both a hero and a villain (Goodreads 2014)

I first need to thank the author, J.D Brink, for allowing me access to this book in exchange for a review- sorry for putting it off for a little bit and thank you for being understanding about it!

I was contacted by the author back in April via e-mail, amd he asked if I would be interested in reviewing his novel “Tarnish”. I looked at the Goodreads page and pretty much replied with a “Hells yeah!”. Fantasy? Sword fights? Monsters? Destiny? Gimme, Gimme!

The novel itself is enjoyable. Unfortunately, at the time I was reading this, I found myself in a bit of a reading slump and was very stressed with real life, so much like with “Shadow of the Wind”, I don’t want to be too overly critical about it.

The world building in this novel was great, there was so much depth to the different towns Billy (or Will, as he names himself throughout the book) found himself in throughout the story, and certainly a loving amount of depth and effort had gone into the stories Will told along the way. I found Will mostly amusing as a character (I do say “mostly” for a reason, which I will come back to in a bit), I loved seeing him big himself up for a fight and then basically just get pummeled. Just goes to show that real life is never like the tall tales we spin. It was like the ultimate “You tried…” story. I did feel quite a bit of sympathy for him whenever he got showed up.

If I have one negative to say about this book is that I found it tricky to follow the narration. The story would jump from Will’s perspective, to a story Will was telling, to the perspective of someone in the village back home- this is where the new popular fad of character names for chapter titles does come in handy! I’d find myself a bit confused for the first paragraph or two of a chapter and then feel stupid as I realised “oh wait, it’s a different character” or “oh right, it’s one of the tales”. I found it meant that the flow of the novel got interrupted by it a lot.  But even then that isn’t really too much of a negative comment,in my opinion anyway.

Following this, while the tales within the story certainly had a loving amount of depth, I found it took me away from the actual plot of the book too much, and I found it difficult to let the stories keep my attention because I just wanted to follow what was going on with Will and the situation with the  monsters back home- which I also felt was not addressed as much as it should have been. I know I’ve missed something vital from this book, I can’t shake that feeling- it has to do with “Trevor”, but I know it’s because my mind was in two places at once while reading this book, just trying to sort out the tales from reality.

I did find myself getting frustrated with Will’s attitude and treatment towards the female characters in the book but I guess this can and probably will be excused by the fact it’s how traditional heroes behave in their adventures, I guess. I know Will is basically a teenager but I still found it pretty off-putting.

On the whole, yes it does have a few flaws, but I certainly recommend this to fans of the fantasy genre.

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