Friday, January 1, 2010

The Victor by Marlayne Giron


I have never been one to go to parties on New Year's Eve. My husband and I sit in the safety and comfort of our home and watch the ball drop from Time's Square. Afterward's I usually sit up and read for a while so that I can wind down. So it was Marlayne Giron's book The Victor that became my first book review of the New Year.
Title: The Victor
Author: Marlayne Giron
Publisher: Tate Publishing, 2009
Pages: 272
Source: I purchased

“The Victor”, by Marlayne Giron is a perfect example of what a good book is. I will read anything once if the premise sounds good. And so it was I came across Marlayne’s book on another site that was offering an opportunity to receive the book. I read the premise and decided I definitely wanted to read the book. I didn’t win it. However I did check out her website and got in touch with her. I have ordered several of her books and given them to my school and students as part of a reading challenge. The best thing that has come out of all of this is the relationship and friendship I have developed with Marlayne. It is therefore with great pleasure that her book will be the first review of the New Year. Following my review is an author interview with Marlayne. Please enjoy the review and check out the links to other reviews and to her website where you can learn more about Marlayne, her book, and her book trailer.

"The Victor" is a medieval love story. I don’t mean the mushy type you would find in a Harlequin romance novel. This is the story of the love of a King for his kingdom. The story starts off with a battle. Baron Lucius, one of King Eloth’s favorite people has become jealous over the years and he covets everything that belongs to the King including his sword, “Ephlal”. When his attack is thwarted and he and his men are captured, the King shows mercy and banishes them from his kingdom. The King still holds out hope for his former friend. We all know that you can't just banish the green eyed monster. There is also the love story of the King’s son Joshua for his childhood friend Llyonesse. Joshua demonstrates the type of king he will one day become when he sets the people of his future kingdom free and rescues Llyonesse his bride to be.
This is definitely a character driven story. As I read I felt I had stepped into the story. I traveled with Penloth as he went out to capture Lucian. I felt Joshua’s anguish when he thought he had lost all. This was a book I could not put down. The range of emotions felt throughout this book was probably what kept me reading non-stop. You feel the love of a King for his kingdom and for his children. You feel heartbreak when one of the characters you have come to love meets and untimely death. You feel anger at the antagonist and want to take matters into your own hands. You feel vindicated when things work out the way you wanted in the end. There were so many twists and turns throughout that it kept me guessing. The book had a feeling of reading “Lord of the Rings” meets “Chronicles of Narnia” meets “Sword in the Stone” all rolled into one. This book is written as an allegory as was “The Chronicles of Narnia”. This is a book that young adults and adults alike will enjoy. Boys and girls will enjoy the fight scenes and girls will have their bit of romance to latch on to. For middle school students like I teach both boys and girls will love the fighting and the romance. This was a perfect book for them. I enjoyed the fact that Marlayne added footnotes to it, that I didn’t really see until I got to the end and had read it through a second time. This is one of the best books I have read recently and I proudly start my new year off with it. I purposely told you very little to wet your appetite. Please check out her website and in her sidebar links to other reviews about her book. This is a must read for the New Year.

Come back tomorrow and check out my author interview with Marlayne Giron.
Disclaimer: This book review is mine alone. I have not been paid to do this review and the opinions expressed in it are mine.

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