I’m taking a break from The Bookshelf this week to welcome The Lost Sentinel blog tour to the blog today, this is the second novel from Suzanne Rogerson, and I loved the first Visions of Zarua so it was a no brainer that I read this one as soon as possible. I’ve reviewed the novel today and be prepared for plenty of gushing because Suzanne has outdone herself! If you do want to see a Bookshelf then you can check out Suzanne’s Bookshelf from April.
The magical island of Kalaya is dying, along with its Sentinel. With the Kalayan people turning their back on magic, can Tei help the exiles find their new Sentinel before it’s too late?
Kalaya is controlled by the Assembly – set up to govern but now under the control of Rathnor, who is intent on persecuting those who have magic, many of whom have taken refuge in the Turrak Mountains.
Tei has been raised to hide her magic, until her father, Migil, is visited by an old friend who warns them that they must seek refuge in the mountains.
On the journey, an enemy attack leaves her father mortally wounded. He sees her into the care of two exiles, Rike and Garrick, and on his deathbed makes a shocking confession that changes Tei’s life.
Tei must put her trust in these strangers, especially when mysterious Masked Riders seem determined to stop her reaching Turrak.
Struggling with self-doubt, Tei joins the exiles in their search for their lost Sentinel. But the Masked Riders want the Sentinel too, and time, as well as hope, is running out.
Can Tei help the exiles save the island magic and reunite the Kalayan people before their ignorance destroys them all?
I will admit that after Visions of Zarua I had set the bar exceptionally high for Suzanne Rogerson, probably unreasonably high for any author to have to live up to and I’m just glad that as bloggers we don’t tell authors about these invisible bars we sometimes set because I may have given the poor author a heart attack with this one. But not only did Suzanne Rogerson meet my expectations with The Lost Sentinel she surpassed them. Let’s talk about it a while…
Kalaya is a magical island, beautiful and filled with mystic’s who have varying degrees of magical power. But the island is dying, as is the leader of the mystics the Sentinel. When Tei escapes to Turrak to join the mystic exiles she discovers she is responsible for finding the next Sentinel before time runs out.
Surrounded by some wonderful characters who get under your skin almost from the start Tei sets out on a harrowing journey which is heartwarming, moving, and terrifying all at once.
I was deeply moved by Garrick one of the protector’s, humans who are responsible for protecting the mystics, he is deeply in love with Tei but this isn’t what was attractive about him, it was his humour and inner and outer strength. Of all the sub-characters he was the one I looked forward to seeing on the page the most.
The world building throughout this novel is exquisite, I felt like I could live and breath Kalaya, and while at sea with Farrell and the Stone Haven traders I felt consumed by the ship and the life of these sailors. I didn’t once feel uncertain or confused about what was happening, where, or why.
All of the characters good, evil, or indifferent have deep backgrounds, and something about them that makes them appealing on the page and makes you want to keep reading digging deeper into their story and how they fit into the bigger picture. There is a huge cast of characters in this book and by the end we don’t get the answers to every question because of this being part one of a series but there is a definite sense of direction.
I Also like that Suzanne Rogerson is a fantasy writer who isn’t afraid of killing important characters. We lose characters in this novel that you would absolutely consider vital to the story. I reached a point where I couldn’t see the page through my tears, now as hard as it is to read that it’s also really important to lose those characters sometimes to make way for the story to progress and I applaud Suzanne for having the bravery to let that happen.
Overall, this story bowled me over, it was an absolutely outstanding epic fantasy and the kind of writing fantasy authors should be aspiring to. The only negative I have is that I’m dreading the wait for book two.
Sending a huge thanks to Suzanne Rogerson for the eARC so that I could read and honestly review this novel.
About Suzanne Rogerson
Suzanne lives in Middlesex, England with her hugely encouraging husband and two children.
She wrote her first novel at the age of twelve. She discovered the fantasy genre in her late teens and has never looked back. Giving up work to raise a family gave her the impetus to take her attempts at novel writing beyond the first draft, and she is lucky enough to have a husband who supports her dream – even if he does occasionally hint that she might think about getting a proper job one day.
Suzanne loves gardening and has a Hebe (shrub) fetish. She enjoys cooking with ingredients from the garden, and regularly feeds unsuspecting guests vegetable-based cakes.
She collects books, loves going for walks and picnics with the children and sharing with them her love of nature and photography.
Suzanne is interested in history and enjoys wandering around castles. But most of she likes to escape with a great film, or soak in a hot bubble bath with an ice cream and a book.
Book & Buy Links
Title: The Lost Sentinel
Series: Silent Sea Chronicles #1
Author: Suzanne Rogerson
Genre: Fantasy | Epic Fantasy | Sword & Sorcery | Magic
Publication Date: 16 June 2017
Review Format: eBook
Other Formats: N/A
Buy: Amazon UK | Amazon US