Thursday, April 29, 2010

Starlighter Review #1

Ok everyone, here it is; my review on Starlighter. Actually, I must confess that it isn’t a complete review just yet… don’t get me wrong! I’m only partway through the book, but I thought it would be interesting to mix things up a bit. So many people read a book and then review it; I thought it would be interesting to look at a book through a reader’s eyes AS they’re reading it… what does the reader think while they’re reading the book? Because, to be honest, anyone can tell you what they thought of a book as a whole after they’ve read the entire thing, but as an author, I want to know what the reader thinks AS they are reading the book, not just after they’re done with it.

For those of you who haven’t read Starlighter yet, this report may have a few spoilers; I’ll try and keep them minimum but I thought it best to warn everyone upfront.

To be honest with you all, I am only on chapter Seven, and as I haven’t read any other books yet by Brian Davis, I’m not going to assume anything as of yet, good or bad, about the author. I will say this, I’ve been waiting forever to read some of his books… and I’m excited about diving into some of his other writings in the very near future (I just bought the first book in the “Dragon’s in our Midst” series!)

So here are my Pros on Brian’s newest book, Starlighter:

There are some interesting plot twists and a good dash of action thrown into the story along with everything else that a fantasy reader would look for in a typical fantasy… chivalry, interesting and complicated villains, an intriguing and deep fantasy world, legends, a bit of magic (and even a bit of science), and a sound hero. Brian Davis does a commendable job on creating a fresh new world… especially one that seems a mix between modern and medieval times (and I’m sure pulling that off was no easy task; way-to-go Brian!) On top of that, some of the scenes are just plain fun to read (Spoiler) (like the scene where Jason is guarding Prescott and duels Marcelle. And the chapters on Starlight are always fun!)

However, that said, here are my Cons:

The main characters seem weak to me, personality wise. A thing I try to remember is that the best heroes are always flawed to help readers relate, and I can’t seem to find Jason’s flaw which is making it difficult for me to relate to him (not necessarily the worst thing in the world, I’ll admit…). We learn about these characters’ talents and abilities, but their overall presence is just a bit weak… except for Tibber the Fibber; so far (other than reading action scenes) I’ve probably enjoyed Tibber’s dialogue the best, and he does seem to be the most rounded character as of yet.

Towards the fifth/sixth chapter, the story becomes a little too predictable for my taste... just for a few pages, but still. It’s also around that part of the book that I begin to feel like the characters are telling me what’s going on in the plot rather than allowing me to assume things for myself. As a reader, I don’t really like this… I like to be allowed to figure things out for myself (whether I’m wrong or right) and sometimes be pleasantly surprised by the ending. But, as I’ve said, I haven’t read farther than the seventh chapter just yet.

But, with that in mind, I’ll go back quickly and say that as far as I can tell, his characters develop well and at a relatively real-life pace… which is a very, very good thing.

Now, taking both the pros and the cons into account, I haven’t put the book down yet. I’m still reading, and will continue to read until I reach the final page, I guarantee it. As the story progresses, I’ll be writing more reviews. And it might be good for some to know that even with the few things I found wrong with Starlighter, the story in itself is enough to outweigh the cons; don’t just take my opinion on the matter… read it for yourself and find out. (and no, I’m not pointing fingers, since I know authors and artists of every type in general – and this goes for me too – tend to overlook small things or problems in their own writings/paintings/what-ever-type-of-art-that-they-do. We learn as we create… :) )

On a scale of 1-5… well, I won’t rate this book until I’m finished with it!

If you would like to know more about Brian Davis and his writings, you can visit his website at .


Jake said...

Personally, Tibber the Fibber is my favorite overall. :)

Star-Dreamer said...

Yeah, I think I like him the best too. But I'm finding that Koren is an interesting character as well. :)

Jaleh D said...

Hmm, maybe I'll look for it at the library. I've never heard of the book or author before. It doesn't grab me enough to buy on a whim, but I'll give it a read if the library has it.