The Well Read Viking

The Well Read Viking

Thursday, April 10, 2014

A Balance Broken by J.T. Hartke

A year and a half ago I entered a giveaway to receive this book. I did not win, but for some reason I kept it around on my lists. Time past and I wound up forgetting about this book, but recently as I scrolled through my to-reads I saw this book and I figured it was time.

As the story begins we are introduced to two characters who both have visions that tell them that they will be integral in changing and shaping the fate of the world. When this happens we have no idea who these people are and what their goals might be. As the book progresses we see more about the motivations of the characters and who they really are and for what side they fight. As this is happening we get introduced to a whole host of other characters who end up getting involved in the main plot at different points.

While this book does follow a familiar fantasy pattern of a protagonist that is coming of age, it does it in a way that is not quite normal. This book actually features two main protagonists, a male and a female, and it follows the growth of the two of them in their respective spheres. I found that many of the characters had depth. They had flaws with which we could associate and they acted like real people would.

The way this book is organized is to have each chapter from a different characters point of view. This allows us to get to know them better and it keeps the book fresh throughout. The action is well paced and the book never feels like it is dragging. Each page grabs your attention and forces you to go on, even though you might have other things to do.  I do have a small complaint (I always do). Sometimes during the action an order would be shouted out or they would be going about things and it ended up feeling a little under-described. One example that comes to mind is when we are introduced to the dwarf mage. He is told to engage in battle but the description of what he did was sparse.

One thing that I really did enjoy was the system of magic that J.T. Hartke created. It was well thought out and well explained. It made the magic that happened seem more real. As a whole I really enjoyed reading this book, and would recommend it to anyone that likes fantasy or a fun fast paced story. I will most certainly be looking for the sequel when it comes out.

Rating: 4.5/5 Stars

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