Warmaiden of Arna by J. T. Archer
Thea, a girl from Arna, has some choices ahead of her. In a land steeped in mystery and an ice age, life is hard for Thea and the people of Arna. Events put additional pressure on Thea until she makes a choice to forsake a simpler life for a more difficult one, becoming a Warmaiden of Arna.
Warmaiden of Arna finds its roots deep in our own mythologies and does its best to build some of its own. J. T. Archer is imaginative, and it shows through in his work, which comes across as unique. That said, Warmaiden of Arna is not perfect by any means.
The pace is slow, especially early on, when the author feels like they need to take a little too much time to build the world and the characters. We say this often, and it remains true: a little confidence in your writing can go a long way. Have faith in your words as well as the readers ability to put the pieces together, and everyone will be better for it. Also, the dialogue manages to be both beautiful and annoying simultaneously.
Archer has a talent for writing some above average dialogue, but it is marred by an attempt to force some kind of accent into it that takes more away from the reading experience than it adds to it. Needing to decipher what a rogue T’ or N’ means or is supposed to sound like does little to keep us immersed or add to the overall power of the work.
Bringing all of that together, though, Warmaiden of Arna is more than enough to slake anyone’s appetite for a darkish fantasy that manages to hit all of the right notes and is a heck of a lot of fun to read.
Do you want to read Warmaiden of Arna? You can find it here.