Spirit of the Sword: Pride and Fury by Frances Smith
Michael Callistus and his sister Miranda, sole survivors of the Old Corona bloodline, part ways after the death of their mother and brother. The siblings are unaware of the extent of their gifts and destinies. Miranda is suddenly transported to Eternal Patheia. Under Quirian’s command, Miranda is trained in the magic arts and uses her gift of healing to create an army from golems. A mass slaughter follows after Miranda heals one of Quirian’s opponents, and she suspects that someone in Quirian’s court planned the attack. When Michael learns the truth about Quirian, he has to convince Miranda that he is a genuine warrior.
First time author spins an original medieval fantasy set within a world of good versus evil. Smith’s first person narrative may feature Michael and Miranda as her principal cast, yet she surrounds her protagonists with an interesting combination of foiled characters. Most notable of the darker characters include The Voice and the mysterious hooded man, while Abigail and Octavia, servants to Miranda, add a lighter splash to dialogues and overall character development, as well as provide freshness to the plot. Yet what makes the first novel in the First Sword Chronicles truly unique is Smith’s underpinning theme of sibling tension between two stubborn adults who are earmarked for greatness. In the midst of the tension, Smith incorporates a host of good/evil twists and turns amid alternating un-clichéd character scenes that are replete with all the archaic elements of gore, valor, and deviant antagonists. A coming-of-age tale with its anticipated cliffhanger closure, Spirit of the Sword: Pride and Fury is not only an engaging read, but also a great addition to fantasy aficionado collections. Keep a lookout for the next installment of the Michael-and-Miranda saga: Spirit of the Sword: Faith and Virtue.
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