Fantasia Reviews Izaryle’s Will by Levi Samuel
Genre – Epic Fantasy
The Will to Survive Izaryle
“Dragons! Magic! War! Everything a good Epic Fantasy needs.
An ancient evil has awoken, unleashing a long-forgotten darkness upon the world.
Gareth, a young sea captain, returns home after a mysterious storm to find his family slaughtered. In his grief, he vows to destroy the foul creatures responsible. Gathering a band of misfits, they embark upon a quest that will forever change their lives.
A found relic calls to the wicked Dreualfar, the very creatures Gareth swore to destroy. But genocide is no easy feat, and the Dreualfar will stop at nothing to free their dark patron.
Can Gareth and his mercenaries serve as the last defenders of a doomed land? Or will they perish in the battle at their doorstep?” – Publisher’s Blurb
Izaryle’s Will – The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly
We have a lot we want to say about this book, but to spice things up, we will start with what we liked. Sadly, there wasn’t much. The world seems vibrant as the author seems to have spent some time crafting it. The language used in the book is appropriate, it was neither repetitious or inappropriate for the genre. Finally, there were few editing errors and none that were distracting.
Not too bad so far, but as we said, there isn’t much else that we can praise about Izaryle’s Will.
A Battle of Wills
We will start with something that has been bothering us for a little while. Why is Gareth such a common name? We don’t know when it happened, but it’s getting old. This is something like the fourth or fifth book with a Gareth in it. It’s a name of Arthurian origin that means gentle. We don’t know if it was chosen to exemplify a trait of this Gareth, but it doesn’t seem to work. He is certainly not gentle, nor is he inherently violent enough to make the name seem cheeky. What we’re left with is an overused name that doesn’t seem to mean much in the context. If this were our only complaint, we would have let Izaryle’s will off easy.
Another issue we found was in the writing. No, not in the grammar, spelling, or word choices, but in the cringy dialogue and use of descriptions. While the dialogue is certainly a problem, we see it enough that we believe it doesn’t bother most readers. However, when you couple the dialogue with the lack of showing and the inconsistent telling, we are left with a narrative that falls apart a little too often. There were too many points that we were left rolling our eyes or with basic, though unanswered, questions.
Last, but certainly not least, the plot was a little on the weak side. We weren’t ever sure of the direction it was heading, and there were more than a couple of times that it felt like it didn’t know either. What you are left with is an anemic jaunt through a vast world that wasn’t even given a chance to shine.
Not Recommended, With a Caveat
We can’t in good conscience recommend Izaryle’s Will. There is just too much missing from the experience. Technically decent and relatively imaginative, the plot and execution leave too much to be desired. That said, we believe that Mister Samuel may still have something to offer. With the second installment of his series only a couple of days away, we are cautiously optimistic and look forward to reading the second book in his Heroes of Order trilogy.
If you want to read the book yourself, you can find it here.