Guardian of honor the summoning book 1
Guardian of Honor (The Summoning #1) by Robin D. OwensReads like bad fanfic.
When I read the summary for this, I was intrigued by a premise that had previously been used by Modesitt in The Soprano Sorceress, bringing a woman from our world into a magical one where she suddenly finds herself in possession of great power. Unfortunately, Ms. Owens is no Modesitt. I strongly suspect that shes a former, or current, fanfic writer and this book is one of her recycled fics that she cleaned up for professional publication. It certainly reads like it, starting out mediocre and rapidly spiraling downward into badfic land.
Again, the premise is promising and I was looking forward to seeing a different authors take on it. The opening, while not great (far too much telling the reader what Thealia is feeling instead of showing it, not letting readers get any feel for it themselves), was catchy. A mysterious land with a mysterious problem that needs a mysterious savior. I can go with that. It couldve been laid out far better, more exposition and description and less spoon-feeding of facts and anvil-over-the-head, This is a Bad Guy, but it was still readable.
The second part of the first chapter, the introduction of Alexa, our main protagonist, while still readable, was even weaker. Her motivations are understandable, as is her circumstances and grief, but I couldnt feel them. Theyre just laid out, stated baldly, and no emotional connection is made. I found her remote and her grief unapproachable; I couldnt empathize with her because thered been no good description, nothing to draw me in. Everything about her past was one huge info-dump of emotionless information. Facts, facts, and more facts, and much of it telling me how she feels and therefore (presumably), how I should feel. Note to author: doesnt work like that. Give me a reason, some character exploration, some build-up, something other than a big mess of facts randomly interspersed with sketchy mentions of Alexa reacting to her info-dump memories. But thats all were given, and no emotional connection is made.
And why is she up in the mountains at night, following auditory hallucinations? She passes it off as an aspect of mourning, grief, unable to explain it to herself. Well, thats a pretty bad explanation for the reader, too. Maybe the chimes and gongs and singing really were that compelling, but you wouldnt know it from the description. None of it felt at all compelling to me. There was no sense of urgency or need there, despite being told over and over that it was, no sense of what drove Alexa out into the dark and dangerous wilds of the mountains against all common sense, and that just makes her look like an idiot instead of a sympathetic heroine.
Thats a complaint I keep coming back to with this authors writing; I cant feel anything from it. The descriptions are dry and factual, and I felt like the author was beating me about the head with those facts, hoping Id accept them that way instead of troubling herself to use any description.
All of this I might have been able to accept. Ive certainly read worse. If itd stayed only this mediocre, I probably wouldve finished the book and just not bothered reading any others in the series. But then Alexa was pulled into Thealias world and the true badness commenced.
Oh, for the love of Strunk & White! Ms. Owens, get thee to a writing class!
If you must use more than one point of view in one scene (and really, why must you?), you do not change them out constantly to where the reader feels like theyre watching a point of view ping-pong match.
I cant imagine a worse way the tests Alexa goes through could have been written. Its like reading a grocery list. First A happens, and Alexa reacts like B, and then C happens and Alexa reacts like D, and then E happens, and so forth. Its so unbelievably dry and factual and methodical. Absolutely nothing there in the way of description to engage the reader in either the events or the emotions they engender. Its supposed to be shocking and exciting, instead its dull and formulaic.
The last straw for me came when Alexa started deducing and deciding things about these new people around her, based not on any facts that were ever made aware of, but on...well, were not made aware of any reason for this, actually, just that she does. For instance, this sentence:
The big man wearing rust red turned to the angular woman - Alexa had decided they were the most important two.
She decided how? Based on what evidence? Thats never explained, and this is something she continues to do, jump to completely illogical decisions and come to equally illogical conclusions. (Or, they may well be very logical, but wed need this thing we call exposition coupled with the ever-popular description to help us see the logic.) This is a perfect example of lazy writing. The author is simply telling the reader something instead of working to support the conclusions Alexa comes to via fleshing out the narrative.
The worst of these conclusions, the one that demonstrates how much the author needs to take a few classes on writing and perhaps even get a new editor, is this:
[The woman] wore a robe of dark red, with a coat of arms over her left breast, but in the center of her chest was a big white cross. Not hard to deduce that she was a doctor.
I was left speechless for a few moments after reading this.
Speechlessness quickly gave way to snark and eye rolling, however. Who, other than a complete imbecile, upon finding themselves in a different world (a different planet, even), would presume that their societal, cultural and dress rules would be the same as our worlds? In our culture, a white cross can mean Christianity or a medic or both. In this world, whats to say it doesnt mean, I sacrifice babies at midnight over a medium flame with a mild garlic sauce? There is no way to know. Not from Alexas perspective. So how she came to this conclusion is either an example of her stupidity or the authors inability to form a coherent narrative. Since I doubt Alexa was meant to come off as a moron, I tend towards the latter explanation.
I read through page 24 of this crime against good narration before giving up in utter disgust. I later scanned a few more chapters to make sure it didnt abruptly improve somewhere along the way and turn into a decent story. It didnt and it doesnt.
Save your money. There are far more interesting fantasy books out there (Im not overly fond of Modesitts style of narrative, but thats just a personal choice and hes a good starting point for this particular brand of fantasy). Itd be free to get this from the library, but unless its the only book left in the sci-fi/fantasy section, I wouldnt bother with doing that, either. Move along, dear reader, there is definitely nothing worth seeing here.
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Guardian of Honor
Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book. For those times when a fun adventure story is just right. Alexa Fitzwalter is mourning the death of her best friend and partner in their fledgling law firm. One cold night she goes hiking near the mountains outside Denver where she is drawn by chanting to an archway. Passing through it, she finds herself in a chamber in Lladrana where she is Tested. In this new place Alexa must learn magic and swordsmanship and figure out how to fit in.
The Marshalls of Lladrana summon a savvy though average American lawyer from Earth to their realm, in hopes that she might save them from an impending monstrous evil. Toggle Dropdown Advanced Search. Owens Paperback, Status Available. Call number He. Place Hold. Series The Summoning.
With their magic boundaries falling and terrible monsters invading, the Marshalls of Lladrana must follow ancient tradition and summon a savior from the Exotique land For Alexa Fitzwalter, the Marshall's call pulled the savvy lawyer into a realm where she barely understood the language, let alone the intricacies of politics and power. Armed only with her wits, a myst. Armed only with her wits, a mystical companion and the help of the chevalier Bastien, Alexa must use her very human mind and skills to fight the encroaching evil--and resist manipulation by the Marshalls to force her to stay in Lladrana. Now torn between her affinity for this realm and Earth, will she return home if given the chance? Or dare she risk everything for a land not her own?
Guardian of Honor (The Summoning, Book 1) [Robin D. Owens] on chrissullivanministries.com *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. Guardian Of Honor by Robin D. Owens.
court of owls talon mask
With their magic boundaries falling and terrible monsters invading, the Marshalls of Lladrana must follow ancient tradition and summon a savior from the Exotique land…. For Alexa Fitzwalter, the Marshall's call pulled the savvy lawyer into a realm where she barely understood the language, let alone the intricacies of politics and power. Armed only with her wits, a mystical companion and the help of the chevalier Bastien, Alexa must use her very human mind and skills to fight the encroaching evil—and resist manipulation by the Marshalls to force her to stay in Lladrana. Now torn between her affinity for this realm and Earth, will she return home if given the chance? Or dare she risk everything for a land not her own?