Wednesday, August 5, 2015

The Hidden Masters of Marandur ( The Pillars of Reality #2) by Jack Campbell

YA Fantasy

From Goodreads:

It’s Book 2 of The Pillars of Reality, the exciting epic fantasy series written exclusively for Audible by New York Times bestselling author Jack Campbell!

Someone wants to kill Mari, a young Steam Mechanic in the Guild that controls all technology. She has learned that her world of Dematr is headed for a catastrophe that will destroy civilization, and that Mages really can alter reality for short periods. Someone also wants to kill Alain, a young Mage who has learned that Mechanics are not frauds as his Guild teaches, and that Mechanic Mari is the only person who can prevent the oncoming disaster.

Narrowly escaping death, the Mechanic and the Mage stay alive thanks to their combined skills, an alliance never before seen. But it becomes clear that both of their Guilds, the most powerful forces in the world, are trying to destroy them. Other powers, like the great Empire and a mysterious secret Order, also seek to kill or capture them, using every weapon from Imperial Legions to Mage-created trolls, dragons, and rocs.

Trying to survive and learn the truth about their world so they will know how to save it, Mari and Alain realize that the answers they seek may lie in the dead city of Marandur. But Marandur is guarded by the legions that have sealed it off from the rest of the world for more than a century. Mari and Alain's only hope may rest with the unseen Masters of Marandur.

This book came about in an interesting way.  It was written for Audible as an audiobook.   After publication it is now available as a Kindle Edition and book one, The Dragons of Dorcastle, comes as both an Audible audiobook, a Kindle edition and a paperback edition.

I got a copy from Netgalley in return for an honest review.  I got it because Jack Campbell was the author.  I have followed his adult series and really liked them all so I wondered how he would do writing for the YA audience.

He did fine.  The Hidden Master of Marandur is book two in the series and I have not read book one.  I was worried I would feel lost but that was not the case.  The back story and world building is worked into the dialog in the story.  While it is apparent that some of the character building was done in book one I still had a very good handle on Mari and Alain.  The plot is still be developed in book two so that was also easy to pick up.

Since this is book two in what appears to be a trilogy don’t expect anything to be solved.  The Hidden Masters of Marandur expands the back story, character development, world building and the plot as it sets everything up for the next book.

The YA focus is provided by the ages of Mari and Alain.   Both are 18.  The story and the plot would work with any age so don’t let the fact that it is YA stop you from reading the book.   Campbell is telling a good tale with lots of danger, tension and some romance.  This is one any age can enjoy.

This is fantasy and Campbell usually writes SciFi.  I think there may be a small SciFi element in the future.

Audible published The Masters of Marandur by Jack Campbell in 2015.

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