Tuesday, July 26

Warrior's Rise by L.J. DeLeon

Book 1 in the Warriors For Light series

Throughout the course of this book I was annoyed, confused, stunned, offended, and I floated. Throughout the course of this review, you will figure out why. I even gave this review a special format so you could skip to the section you wanted to read most! Aren’t I kind? A real quick summary of the book: Deva Morgan was a simple bartender until Padraig comes into her bar, slaughters the demons hunting her, and tells her he’s her protector. She learns she is the Caidh Arm, sent by the Goddess and given lots of powers in order to save Earth from the Demon Lord in the upcoming war. Deva then goes on to fight many battles as she tries to get organized and learn how to control her powers, so she can be an effective leader.

The annoying:
I don’t know if it was just my copy, but there were a lot of errorscontent-wise and grammatical – in this book. Those always hamper my reading, and it really annoys me. The author also does more telling than showing. There several instances where DeLeon would tell me something I’d already gleaned from the conversation and I would just stare at my computer screen thinking, No shit. DeLeon also contradicts herself several times. The story was very drawn out. I would have been much happier if this book had been condensed and scenes/conversations hadn’t been repeated over and over without any resolution. Which was annoying. Hence why it’s under ‘the annoying’ subtitle.

The confusing:
There were so many small characters, so many different species, so many plots that I had a really hard time following what was occurring, to whom, by what. So many characters came into the plot only to be inconsequential or die that DeLeon confused me with all the extra names. There were also tons of different names for all the different demons and other non-human creatures. I had a hard time determining what Deva and Padraig were facing and what abilities the creatures had because each creature had different abilities, but I saw it only once or twice. Finally, there were so many plots to follow. DeLeon lets some of the mini-conflicts float about unresolved from the beginning of the book to the end which really didn’t work for me. I like my mini-conflicts to either build upon each other in an obvious fashion that leads up to the main conflict or be immediately resolved. Not so in Warrior’s Rise.

The stunning:
There were some really decent parts to this book. First, the humor. I had seven highlights for this book, which is more than most books get. There were many humorous lines that you just stumbled upon, blinked once or twice, and then had to burst out laughing. I liked that. Humor Stun Guns are approved weapons on my blog, and DeLeon wielded hers with finesse. Also, DeLeon uses her extensive military background to write some great action scenes in which I could almost, almost lose myself in the story again. I appreciated that her research and knowledge of the subject matter significantly improved my reading experience.

The offending:
Authors that stereotype the general population of Earth assume I’m too stupid to notice they’re taking it easy. The reality is, if Earth were informed tomorrow that half our neighbors were werewolves, there would not be mass lynching, mob, and murder activities occurring. Most of the world is civilized and sane, and would not react in such a fashion. That was what offended me the most about this book. The characters didn’t act true to themselves or their human nature - they acted in a way that made writing easier for DeLeon. They acted to further the plot – to push it in the direction DeLeon wanted it to go. It was all very cliché. Also, I'm pretty sure our main characters – Deva and Padraig – have multiple personality disorder. They act like completely different people on several occasions in this book, and there was no consistency to their character (other than Deva’s relationship with the goddess – that was pretty solid). Does the author think I’m too stupid to notice that the character is unpredictable in the worst way possible, and has no substance?

The floating:
The worst part about this book was that I was never grounded in it. The author has difficulty establishing time and place clearly, so we’re constantly floating around in this vast space of randomness. I really had a hard time understanding the team’s movements. It seemed they were in random places for random amounts of time for really random reasons. I had a really hard time with that – the author’s inability to ground me in her story with a realistic, clear time/place plan. Of course, with the rest of the plot being so confusing, I’m not surprised.

Oh. Right. You want to know about the romance. Well. Here it is:
There is no building of tension. Honestly, I don’t recall one good kissing/steamy scene before Padraig and Deva… mate. It’s like romance is put on the back burner until, BAM, they have sex and then it’s back to the back burner for the most part. Like, woah. As far as their marriage, we discover their getting married about three days before they do. No prior warning. Deva’s best friend/older brother figure, Steve, mentions it once to Padraig before Deva and Padraig announce to everyone they’re getting married. Totally hit me over the head. There was never any mention of it, neither Deva nor Padraig entertained thoughts of marriage. It was all this war, war, war stuff and then BAM marriage. Kinda like the sex. Here’s the basic romantic plot line: War war war SEX war war war MARRIAGE war war… end.

Favorite quotes:

This siren would be a nightmare to train, much less protect. Protect? He was the one who needed protection. (Padraig)

The Fomorii were once considered sea gods.” Padraig nodded. “During the Great War against the Dark Lord, we D’ Danaan sealed them beneath the deepest part of the sea.”
“Must not have done a very good job.” Deva stared at him. “They got loose.”

“To the WAR room.” Moira giggled. “It stands for ‘Wedding Apparel Readiness.’ I thought of that.”

“Sexy”ness rating: No tension. Sex included.

Overall Rating: F

Bottom Line: This book had so much potential, but it’s really not worth your time. With so many great Fantasy books out there, this one simply isn’t worth it. From a really rocky beginning, the book plummeted.

Pages: 335
Published: March 20, 2011
Genre: Fantasy

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