The Watcher's Keep by Timothy Bond
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
The Watcher's Keep has everything it takes to be a really good epic fantasy novel. A pair of twins thrown into the world to seek their destiny and the future; an evil Wizard-God, his dragon and his henchmen bent on ruling the world opposed by the Guardians, consisting of a Wizard, a woodsman and an assortment of motley characters; dwarves who are emerging into the world of men again, reluctantly; elves who are caught between helping and hindering; and a Prophecy that no one really understands.
I was hoping to like it, despite being a little disappointed with the prequel novella (Prophecy's Queen: An Epic Fantasy) because not everyone can do novellas well. Still, it didn't quite meet my expectations. It felt clunky in places, with a lot of info dumps which could probably have been smoothed over with a better editor. In some places, I was a little confused over the timeline as it seemed as if something happened in a chapter prior, and then we headed off to see what was happening with another character, and it wasn't entirely clear if we'd gone back to cover the same few days or we'd moved on sequentially.
There was an overall choppiness to it; the writing was disjointed, rather like some of my first drafts which I never got round to fixing. I'm not writing this series off yet, I think, but I do wish he'd polish it up a bit more first.
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Review of Prophecy's Queen here.
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