Customer Reviews for

The Realms Thereunder

Average Rating 3.5
( 23 )
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  • Posted September 14, 2011

    Another Fine Addition to the Fantasy Canon

    The first book of the Ancient Earth trilogy, The Realms Thereunder, is also author Ross Lawhead's debut novel. It creates a well-thought out plot that alternates between two worlds, the world of present day Oxford and the timeless realm existing under the earth. His protagonists, the drifter Daniel Tully and the OCD student Freya Reynolds are on a quest to discover the source of the increasing evil that is manifesting itself in horrible and unsettling ways. Though comparison with Lawhead's father, author Stephen Lawhead is inevitable, one should try to read Realms for its own merits, which are many. A well-written and engaging read full of dark alleys, evil and malignant creatures, memorable characters and travel between alternate realities, it maintains a good pace and enough interest to hold this inveterate and opinionated reader of good fantasy captive. The Realms Thereunder is a blend of ancient and modern day England and draws heavily from the country's rich store of history and myth, creating a compelling landscape across which the author spreads his story of interweaving realities. For an exciting distraction from your own reality, I would heartily recommend this book.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 28, 2012

    A stonking good story! Original and Slightly more sophisticated

    A stonking good story! Original and Slightly more sophisticated (and
    somewhat more complicated) than most run-o-the-mill stuff out there.
    Lawhead employs a fine sense of observation, backed up by a real feel
    for Old English history and legends to create a unique and original
    fantasy rooted in the age of Alfred the Great. The result is refreshing
    and interesting and, at times, very touching. What fun! Bring on Book 2!
    I'm a fan

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  • Posted March 13, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    When I got The Realms Thereunder, I read the first page and it d

    When I got The Realms Thereunder, I read the first page and it didn't click.

    To be honest - I am not sure what was wrong with me at that moment.

    When I picked up the book again, not only I've read the first page - I could not put the book down! Reading late into the night, reading at lunch with my co-workers watching me (because we have a little kitchen and one table...), reading on my way to work... Well, you get the idea.

    Past and present are ingeniously entwined into a tale that can be easily placed on the same shelf as the Chronicles of Narnia, Skin Map, and Inkheart. Daniel Tully and Freya Reynolds, former classmates and fellow adventurers, have to embrace their past experience and once again journey into the unknown to help the world survive against the evil that is rising. Daniel is full of anticipation, Freya is full of fear, yet together they make a great team.

    The plot is packed with action and yet Ross weaves a story-line that includes philosophical and theological discussions about the battles familiar to each and every one.

    "People can go anywhere," Swiðgar said. "But are they where they want to be?"

    Sometimes it takes something supernatural to get us thinking about the real reality of life. In our busyness of life, do we pay attention to what we have or simply take everything for granted? Do we really need to be transplanted into another world to see what we've got?

    I highly recommend this book to all those who like to plunge into the unknown reality of other worlds that exist right here next to us.

    Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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  • Posted September 13, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Great Book!

    Eight years ago thirteen-year-olds Daniel Tully and Freya Reynolds disappeared while on a class trip to a church in Abbingdon in the British Midlands. Months later they returned home, but the teenagers kept quiet about what really happened to them. Fast forward to the present time, Daniel Tully is living on the streets of Oxford and is being stalked by a wraithlike creature with sharp teeth, and he kills the creature. He's been keeping track of the reports of maimed animals and many suicides that have occurred around a particular mountain in Scotland. He worries that his worst fears have come true.

    Freya Reynolds has been living with OCD while she attends college. She has become obsessed with mystical creatures and folklores. Soon she is reunited with her childhood friend, Daniel, and they both must return to the mystical world, a hidden city underground. A war is coming against an enemy the world has never seen. With the help of a Scottish police officer, Alex Simpson, they must confront their past in order the defeat the upcoming evil.

    Knights, crazy creatures, and hidden cities are what you'll find in this full-length novel by Ross Lawhead. Don't let the fact that the book is considered Christian pull you away from reading this book. I don't read much fantasy, but I couldn't put the book down. The main characters, Daniel and Freya, will stay in your mind long after you have finished reading. With all the vampires, witches, and werewolves novels coming out every month, it is nice to read an original, creative novel. Do you know what is great? This is only book one of the Ancient Earth Trilogy. I can't wait for the sequel to come out next year.

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  • Posted August 9, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    The first Ancient Earth quest fantasy is an exciting thriller

    Thirteen year olds Daniel Tully and Freya Reynolds went missing and are assumed dead. Seventy-two days later, they reappear in shock in East Ayreshire, Scotland.

    Over the next eight years, on the surface the pair reacts differently to their ordeal never adequately explained. He became a homeless person carrying a sword he swears he earned when he vanished while she became an Oxford student studying folklore. However, both still suffer from the trauma of what they saw and did with denial their defense mechanism of choice. Eight years ago, they visited a church only to be abducted by knights who escorted them to an ancient underground city in the realm of Nidergeard. There lives the protectors of the surface dwellers from the evil that wants to permeate the outer realm. Now both are kidnapped in diverse ways, but when they unite they agree the time has come for them to engage in the second battle of Nidergeard.

    The first Ancient Earth quest fantasy is an exciting thriller with an intriguing underlying premise that defeating evil is not "good" enough because evil will fester in a nurtured vacuum unless good remains diligent by performing good deeds. The lead protagonists are a strong duet while the support cast especially underground enhances the war. Although crawling through the underground maize slows down the plot, fans of Tolkien and Brooks will want to join the pair as they enter the below the surface war zone.

    Harriet Klausner

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 27, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

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