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Posted December 21, 2010
I always look for contrast in a story and this one has it in abundance, starting with the two main characters.
Dallin, imposing in stature and personality, a respected member of society, knows his past. He's recalled it time and again in an attempt to blunt the pain of memory. What Dallin doesn't know, or won't admit to, are the secrets hidden there.
Wil has spent most of his life doing his best to be small and invisible. A solitary character running from his own past, he knows little about himself but he does know one of Dallin's secrets. And Wil has his own good reasons for not wanting to share it with him.
Their paths cross when Dallin is called upon to investigate a crime. The events that follow set them, reluctantly, on a path together. There follows a gradual and tenuous building of trust between the two, by Wil because he has no choice, and Dallin because he has made a decision from which there is no return.
For me the high quality of the characterisation made getting to know Wil and Dallin a joy. The insightful reflections of the characters through the course of the story are deeply revealing and leave no doubt as to why they make decisions that, without that subtle exposition, would seem untenable and out of character.
The writer demonstrates a wonderful sense of timing which she uses to inject humour between the characters and just as effectively to create a feeling of threat and urgency to the plot. Her worldbuilding is wonderfully evocative; rich in vivid atmospheric imagery. The plot is intelligent, has intrigue and some nice, unexpected `twisty bits' that made this a truly engrossing read.
This is book one of a trilogy and I can't wait for the next instalment.
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Posted March 4, 2012
If you like sci-fi this is a great series. There is no sex in this first book but so much is going on you won't miss it. This story is pretty deep. This author definitely knows how to set up atmosphere.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted January 14, 2012
Book one of The Aisling is a wonderfully crafted book with an interesting plot. Carole Cummings does a good job at portraying the story through the eyes of both Dallin and Wil, polar opposites that are brought together through a series of circumstances. The story is well written and nothing feels dragged on. Furthermore, the pace of the plot seems just right. The relationship between both characters is a slow, but steady progression that is believable and is a relief. Once you pick this book up, it will be hard to resist grabbing the second one right after! Definitely recommended.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted January 27, 2011
"Aisling: The Guardian" is the beginning of a marvelous epic story about a fascinating world and the engaging and complex characters, and deities, who populate that world. And the best part is that everyone has the two remaining books in the Aisling story to look forward to this year. The author doesn't waste our time introducing her world in intricate detail. Instead, she sits us down in the story and allows us to find out, just like Dallin, what the heck is going on and where the heck we are. The world has the flavor of ours, pre-industrial revolution, but there is obviously more going on here that science and logic can explain - there are deities, but, as with all deities, they are rather obscure, vague in their teachings, and pre-occupied, and there is magic, but as with all magic, it can go either way - dark or light. As with everything else in her work, the author doesn't hit you over the head with these things - the religion and the magic are part and parcel of the world. Clearly, we are going to find out more about this fascinating world as the characters and the story reveal it. But the author's absolute strength is her characterization. The two main characters - Dallin and Wil - are extremely well drawn and very authentic in their interactions with each other, based on the author's representation of their history and experience. The secondary characters are also very strong. I particularly loved the fact that, in this world, it is understood that women can play key roles and still be female. And I adore Wil, of course. One of the author's obvious strengths is the way she can portray a truly tormented character without making him a caricature. Wil is complex - childlike in his reactions to some things, and an old tormented soul in reaction to others. Add to this his skill, learned in the most horrific of circumstances, of playing whatever role will allow him to survive, and Wil is an extremely complex and appealing character. Watching Dallin learn to understand Wil - to understand and trust his own instincts about Wil - is fascinating. And the book ends on the perfect note - Dallin has already extended his support and trust to Wil before he really comprehends the role intended for him by those obscure deities I mentioned before. And so we wait for the next installment. Bravo! And here's to many more from this author!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted April 23, 2013
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Posted March 11, 2012
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