A Ranger’s Tale by Mysti Parker
“In the high elf city of Leogard, an elven noblewoman longs to leave her gilded cage. A half-breed former pirate wants nothing more than to escape his guilty past. Easier said than done…
Caliphany Aranea, nearly a century old, leads an enviable life as high elf King Leopold’s niece and daughter of Sirius, Leogard’s most famous wizard. She is expected to follow in her father’s footsteps to lead the Mage Academy and to marry a man she doesn’t even like. Yet, she craves a taste of life outside the city walls.
As a young boy, half-elf Galadin Trudeaux witnessed his parents’ death at the hands of pirates. After being raised by those same murderers and forced to do their bidding, he escaped and now lives an honest life as a sea merchant and ranger.
When two brutes at Leogard Harbor attempt to kidnap Caliphany while she dreams of faraway lands, Galadin comes to her rescue. Impressed by his skills, she asks him to train her as a ranger. Though he is hesitant at first to train a woman of her class, Caliphany’s hefty sack of gold finally persuades him. Unfortunately, her father is not amused, and the two must escape before Caliphany faces a forced marriage and Galadin faces a noose.
From that moment on, to the finale, where Caliphany must decide where her heart truly lies, she and Galadin embark on a fateful journey that will change their lives forever. Can they survive the trials and tragedies ahead to find a love that stands the test of time?” – From Amazon
Story – Decent
Part fantasy, part romance, A Ranger’s Tale is a story of elves and men in a marginally imaginative world. We really wish we had more to say about it, but there is not much to it. Perhaps that says more than enough, it is a narrative without too much substance, and by the end, you have read something that is not particularly memorable, and you are impressed that it went on for as long as it did. It should be noted, we found the characters likeable, even if they felt a bit flat at times, and though their growth feels artificial, it has little difficulty keeping your attention if you manage to get invested.
“The king’s herald stepped inside the great white doors. The orchestra paused. I turned toward the commotion, as had everyone else. I ignored Juliana’s probing gaze and listened to the herald shout over the buzz of the crowd.”
Writing and Formatting – Passable
A good editor could do this book some good, while it is readable, there are large chunks that feel like they are unnecessary for the story. As well, the formatting of the e-book is a little off, though that crime is perhaps not as serious as the inconsistent jumps through the different PoV. We consider mid-chapter PoV changes in a first person narrative style to feel frenetic, which is odd, as this book is anything but.
“Teaching new recruits how to shoot a bow did not interest me, though I carried out my duties the best I could. A couple of weeks passed, and I cringed every morning when they waited to practice in the public courtyard where anyone could witness the spectacle. Galadin would have laughed himself silly at their whining.”
Literary Value – Lacking
Perhaps the saddest part of this story is we are not sure why it was written. It just barely slides over the thresholds for fantasy and romance while doing nothing particularly impressive with either genre. It does not feel like much was created here except a non-offensive way to blow an afternoon. That being said, if you can handle those fun fantasy tropes and are interested in romance, this book could bridge the gap for you, perhaps.
“It was late afternoon by the time I woke. I rubbed the sleep from my eyes and touched my forehead. The wound was only a faint bump now. I looked at my hand. The sun glinted off my wedding ring.”
Overall – 2.5, Could Be Worse
If you are out of fantasies and romances to read, maybe you should pick up A Ranger’s Tale. While at times is feels like an RP session gone wrong, and there are plenty of moments that made us cringe, you could certainly do a lot worse for the price.
A Ranger’s Tale is available on Amazon.