Sunday, June 3, 2012

Book Review: Throne of the Crescent Moon

I can't think of a book that has left me as torn and divided as Throne of the Crescent Moon has.

The book is largely a high fantasy using Middle eastern tropes and concepts, weaving some different settings and ideas into a decently-formed, short (for a fantasy) story. The book excels at creating a great setting that feels familiar while being different than most general fantasy locales. It follows some ghul hunters, who include an older man on his last go 'round before his marriage and his well-read apprentice, who are suddenly facing a rather massive supernatural insurrection.

The problem with the book is more that it almost drowns in its concepts as it attempts to break free of them to be a good story. The characters are interesting on the surface but didn't resonate with me at all. The setting was great, and almost felt like a character in itself, but it ended up feeling like I was more of a visitor or observer rather than something that was a more immersive experience.

The book moves at a solid pace, which masks a lot of these issues, but I suppose my expectations were much higher for a book I desperately wanted to love. Much of my criticism might be based more around this not being the book I wanted it to be, but I would like to see something a little more engaging next time.

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