Welcome to Reviewing the Indie Author, where we look at books by small, self-published authors.
“There is only power and the path one takes to attain it.”
—Raston Tolle, Telborian wizard king. Reigned: 34 B.V.–6 B.V
This is the first line you read when you start Return of the Wizard King—a beautifully written start to set up the world you are about to enter. Magic has finally returned to the world of Tralodren, setting the stage for evil to return, and the first few chapters of this book are dedicated to understanding and feeling the dark presence that is blooming here. It is rare to find a book that starts by bringing you into the evil of the world, but these chapters beautifully set the tone for the rest of the book.
In Chad Corrie’s novel, we meet six people of three different races, all brought together by one elvish priest and on a quest to stop the evil that will allow the Elves to take over once more. This is the first in a three-story epic quest to keep the peace in the current world. However, there is much more to the tale than that. Each character is finding his or her own way, learning about themselves, and discovering who they are. Each person is richly woven into this tale and has their strengths and weaknesses play into this overall plot.
The adventure that they take is rather short, as the majority of the book is dedicated to introducing and bringing this band of unusual travelers together. Even with this being the case, you don’t end the book feeling empty or that you were hyped up only for nothing to happen. The ending, the final fight, and the lead-in to the next book are still prominent and satisfying.
The many different races in this world stay close to the traditional fantasy races of human, dwarf and elf. The dwarfish race and human race are very similar to a standard fantasy setting; the humans are scattered around the world, and the dwarfs live in very closed off communities. However, there is something unique about the elvish race—or, rather, races, since there are two, the Elyellium and the Patrious. The Elyellium are warriors. They once ruled mankind and have a wicked desire to do so again. They crave power and have a strong bloodlust, very similar to the Roman empire. Humans are used as slaves and sport in this empire. The Patrious only want peace.
Tralodren is a world that is close to our own, yet so different. The landscapes are familiar and feel cozy, but there is a powerful magic that seems to flow from the pages and into your imagination when reading. It is a rich and powerful backdrop to the story and also is instrumental in helping you learn about the characters.
The Return of the Wizard King is a revision of Chad Corrie’s first release under Seer’s Quest: Book One of the Divine Gambit Trilogy. Corrie has edited and added some content to the original, giving it a more polished and completed feel. Books two and three, Trial of the Wizard King and Triumph of the Wizard King, starts with a fictional quote from the past world just as this one does; these are enjoyable and wonderful insights into the past without being to heavy. It would be best enjoyed by advanced young adults and above. I first read this book about eight years ago and took much pleasure in reading the updated version—it was like returning to an old friend.
Chad Corrie is a Minnesota native who has written comics, graphic novels, prose novels, and other works. He has also produced podcasts related to his writing and the writing process in general. Learn more about him on his website or follow him on Twitter or Facebook. Return of the Wizard King is available as an ebook for Kindle, Nook, Kobo, and other formats.