I’m a sucker for fantasy stories. Kings and castles, swords and sorcery, I’m there! Despite being a popular genre, though, I have a hard time finding books that really catch my interest. I don’t mind buying books, but only after they’ve proven themselves to me. I’m a big fan of the library for that reason. There’s a ton of books I’ve pulled off library shelves thinking they’d be right up my alley, only to read a quarter or so and decide the story was simply pitiful.
City of Blaze was a pleasant surprise in that it met a lot of my requirements. For one, it was free. I never expect a lot out of free ebooks, but this one was put together very well.
It’s a fairly traditional fantasy tale, following a prince who is also a powerful mage, chronicling his encounters with a woman destined to fulfill prophecy.
The intro to the story is certainly a hook, establishing a sense of urgency and even confusion. It was together enough for a reader to know what was going on, but was out of left field and kept me wondering what had happened in those first few pages just enough to keep me going.
There’s also the matter of editing, which few ebooks are subjected to at all. This one has had a bang-up job done with it. I didn’t see any typos or misspellings. No formatting errors, either, though it occasionally did only display a paragraph at a time on my Nook Simple Touch, leaving a lot of white space.
The ending is strong, but a real cliffhanger, so don’t expect a lot of closure without continuing into the later books in the series.
Despite the stereotypes and clichés present in its overall story, it was certainly an enjoyable read that put some nice spins on traditional fantasy elements.