Progeny: The Children of the White Lions

( 9 )

Overview

Nikalys and his sister Kenders have grown up living a peaceful life in the small village of Yellow Mud.

On a blistering hot day, brother and sister head to the lake for a swim. There, they witness a mysterious stranger send forth a massive, living wave that swallows their village. Believing they are the sole survivors, the two strike out on their own, hoping to discover why their home and family have been destroyed. They must make their way through a countryside where magic is ...

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Overview

Nikalys and his sister Kenders have grown up living a peaceful life in the small village of Yellow Mud.

On a blistering hot day, brother and sister head to the lake for a swim. There, they witness a mysterious stranger send forth a massive, living wave that swallows their village. Believing they are the sole survivors, the two strike out on their own, hoping to discover why their home and family have been destroyed. They must make their way through a countryside where magic is outlawed while struggling with the revelation that one of them can "weave the Strands."

Through their travels, they discover that their simple life was an illusion. An epic, divine struggle has been underway for ages, and Nikalys and Kenders are at the center of it.

Ancient, powerful forces have sought them since before their birth and hunt them to this day. Some wish to eliminate the threat they pose while others want to help the pair fulfill a destiny of which they are unaware. Myths and legends come to life, whisking the pair along a grand journey neither could have imagined possible.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780615421032
  • Publisher: Terrene Press
  • Publication date: 12/1/2010
  • Pages: 612
  • Age range: 15 years
  • Product dimensions: 6.14 (w) x 9.21 (h) x 1.24 (d)

Meet the Author

R.T. Kaelin grew up in Cincinnati and now resides in Columbus, Ohio with his beautiful wife and the two best kids ever. For years, he worked in information technology, but felt there was something more waiting for him. He always had an active imagination, so one day he decided to do something with it. R.T. Kaelin's son and daughter are too young to grasp it fully, but they are the reason he writes. His favorite place in the world is any barely-occupied, tucked-away corner of Tuscany.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 9 )
Rating Distribution

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Sort by: Showing all of 9 Customer Reviews
  • Posted January 30, 2011

    R. T. Kaelin weaves the strands of magic

    In this impressive first novel by R. T. Kaelin, we are introduced to the White Lions-champions-in-hiding from an ancient war against one of the nine evil gods, Chaos-and a prophecy only partially come to pass. With assistance this time from other gods in the evil cabal, Chaos is rising again, "unraveling what has been made." It now falls to the children of the mysterious White Lions and those who aid and befriend them to rise up and fight-as the prophecy tells, to "seek to make it right." When I picked up the advance uncorrected proof of "Progeny," I was soon swept up into a world so large, and a tale so relentless, that I could not put it down. The plot flows as strongly as a waterfall but manages to pace itself and keep the reader guessing. The disparate characters we meet along the way are intriguing and richly nuanced, reminding one of Tolkien's without being derivative. Although good is classically pitted against evil in this tale, there are few black-and-white characters here. (Interestingly, in the pantheon of 33 gods and goddesses listed in the Appendix, nine are good, nine are evil, and the rest are "neither.") We find terror and confusion, petulance and pettiness-but also patience, humor, compassion, and the will to grow into one's best potential. With one vividly nasty exception, even the "bad guys" sometimes "do good." The concept, I am told, of "weaving the strands" came to the author in a dream. We learn that most mages in "Progeny" can see and touch but a few of the nine strands of magic, and a rare few can touch all nine. Some who cannot see certain strands can still recognize their absence and guess at how the magical patterns might have been made. The author himself is adept at weaving: legend and modernity, numerology and alchemy, democracy and psychology, shamanism and string theory-and much more-shimmer through the patterns of this tale. Astute readers will bring their own instincts and insight to "Progeny," rewarded for their effort by no less than a heightening of their own consciousness of themselves and the world around them. I am struck by the similarities between the prodigious young Kenders learning to weave the strands of magic-sometimes clumsily but always extraordinarily-and the way Kaelin weaves his story. This is a big book and a big world, surprisingly well conceived for a first novel. Although there are errors in the proof I read that a light editorial gloss should fix, the writing as a whole is strong and engaging. At the end of its 662 pages, the larger story for which the stage is set in "Progeny" has only just begun. Many books (not to mention movies and video games) could be spun from the magical foundational pattern R. T. Kaelin has woven in "Progeny." I very much look forward to the next book in the series, and I strongly encourage Mr. Kaelin to keep writing.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 24, 2011

    Progeny by R.T. Kaelin

    This book was the hardest book I have ever read(and I've read over 200 books, i'm not a beginner.) Not in the good way either. You may have read my review for 'Allon' by Shawn Lamb, I mentioned that it had a unique style that would be most appreciated by experienced readers. This is totally different. To be blunt, this was a major waste of my time. Tons of reviewers have given it good reviews (haven't seen one below five stars yet.) I don't see where they get 'almost as good as the Chronicles of Narnia.' I suppose it's all up to opinion. The syntax was muddled, and the content was constantly redundant. I would sometimes have to re-read ENTIRE paragraphs to understand what was going on. Or, one of my favorite mishaps was learning that after four pages that the view had switched to a completely new character in a completely different place. I almost felt physically exhausted after reading it. I would stop after about twenty pages and do something else (within the course of one hundred pages, I read four other books), it was sucking the energy right out of me. I really do not like being a negative person, but I couldn't find anything positive. Cussing was a medium amount and I would definitely not recommend this book.
    Review for RachelsBookReviews

    2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 16, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Interesting fantasy debut

    I was fortunate to win this book in a first-reads giveaway. Very entertaining epic fantasy. The world-building and system of magic are impressive. The heroes are easy to root for and identify with. After seeing their village destroyed by an evil mage in a land where magic is outlawed, brother and sister Nikalys and Kenders flee, leaving behind the only life they have known. As they journey towards a fate greater than either of them imagined lay in store for them, they assembly a group of allies to help them avenge what they have lost and begin to prepare for the battle that lies in front of them. Along the way they discover that much of what they thought they knew about their world is wrong and that they have a great destiny. The siblings and their friends are well written characters that you want to watch grow. Nundle in particular is a highly entertaining individual that I'm looking forward to seeing more of. The world is expansive and lends itself to much further exploration. The villain of the story is written a little thinly. Openly and exaggeratedly cruel, he simply doesn't have the same character depth as the heroes. Sometimes his over-the-top actions were a little too much to believe and jarred you out of the story for a bit. I have higher hopes, though, for some of the villains that were introduced in this book but that I expect will have a greater role in subsequent novels. All in all, a very good story that is entertaining in its own right and will leave you curious as to what happens next.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 9, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    a new phenomenon in young adult fantasy

    R.T. Kaelin has begun a new phenomenon with his debut book, Progeny. Rarely do we see such work come from a new author. The first in a new series, Progeny promises an exhilirating ride.

    After watching the destruction of their entire village, siblings Jak, Nikalys, and Kenders, soon learn that little they accepted as fact was true while myths turn out to be real. Faced with a new reality and a challenge to fulfill their role in a prophecy, the siblings begin a coming of age journey of self-realization.

    Kaelin's characters are beautifully rich and well developed, as is the history behind the story and the world which he eloquently creates. The use of magic as energy work brings another dimension to the book, accompanied by subtle nuances and deeper underlying topics. Readers will not be disappointed.

    Fans of Tolkien and Paolini will see a wonderful new spin on a fantastical world which leaves the reader anxiously awaiting the next book in the series. While the copy I read still needed some light editing, that fact couldn't detract from the wonderful writing and story woven within.

    Disclaimer: A complimentary copy was provided by the author.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 24, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    A Stunning Work of Epic Fantasy!

    Nikalys and Kenders Isaac have lived a simple life as children of a farmer in the town of Yellow Mud. When a summer day leads them away from their village, they never predicted that it would also save their lives. From a distance, the two witness the magical destruction of their town - including their friends and family - by a mysterious elf and several robed figures. After watching the terrifying encounter, the two siblings flee. Magic has always been outlawed in their home, but even more startling than seeing it destroy their lives is the discovery of unique powers within themselves. Setting out to notify the authorities, Kenders and Nikalys soon cross paths with a giant of a man named Broedi. Possessing the rare talent of shapeshifting, he is a fortunate ally who holds the secrets to their past - as well as their future.

    Progeny by R.T. Kaelin is a stunning work of epic fantasy. The story is wonderfully told and full of action and adventure. Along with the Isaac siblings and their large companion, the book is populated with well-developed characters. The story lines are beautifully woven together and each new multi-dimensional hero or villain that is introduced adds a new layer of perspective to the tale. These characters flourish in the the expansive fantasy landscape that Kaelin has created. A single village or kingdom is not enough to contain the story, so the setting is an entire nation with multiple terrains, laws, races, and cultures. Along with a pantheon of gods - good, neutral, and evil - the story refers to seasons, history, education, politics, ancient prophecy, customs, and legends of the land, all of which contribute to bringing the world to life. The universe also contains a richly detailed and unique system of magic. The system is built upon the concept of Strands - nine of them, each with a unique color and property - and those with a gift for magic wield it by weaving together the types of Strands they are able to use. Some users can control multiple types such as fire, air, water; some can only touch a few; others have no knowledge of magic at all; while some can sense it but not use it.

    Cleverly conceived and expertly crafted, Kaelin demonstrates great talent as a writer with this work. The grand scale world-building, rarely seen in a debut novel, is on par with current greats of the genre such as Brandon Sanderson and Jim Butcher. Though it nears seven hundred pages long, the epilogue comes far too soon; but the story holds great promise for future adventures in the series. Overall, Progeny is a fantastic book! It is appropriate for young adults or fans of high fantasy of any age. While it does tell a succinct story, it will definitely leave readers eagerly anticipating its sequel!

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 30, 2011

    Kaelin is the next star in the Fantasy galaxy!

    If you're a fantasy fan, R.T. Kaelin's first in a series, Progeny, is a very satisfying excursion into a world of magic, myth, mystery, and mayhem. In a land where magic is outlawed, a young brother and sister discover that they are key to the fulfillment of an ancient prophecy, and that they could be imprisoned, banished, or even put to death when their emerging magical powers begin to manifest. The characters are richly drawn, and I found myself developing an emotional connection to them from the get-go. I was enchanted by the concept of the "Strands," shimmering strings of light that are woven into various patterns to accomplish everything from healing to mass annihilation. For me, it evoked comparisons to what I know of string theory, and the potential power that lies within each of us. I found myself trying to visualize the Strands as I drifted off to sleep at night after being up until the wee hours reading this wonderful book! I highly recommend this book for those who love fantasy. Even those who've never explored the genre will be drawn into Kaelin's richly realized world where ancient gods and goddesses sometimes do interfere in the affairs of man. I look forward to the next book with great anticipation! I haven't been this excited about a series since I read Christopher Paolini's Eragon, Eldest, and Brisingr. R.T. Kaelin could just be the next star in the fantasy galaxy.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 29, 2013

    Progeny is one of those books you see made into a movie. It's a

    Progeny is one of those books you see made into a movie. It's a story that captures the reader and doesn't let them go, not even at the final page. If you enjoyed the Chronicles of Narnia or the works of Paolini then you will most definitely enjoy Progeny. As YA Fantasy novels go, this is one of those that leaves me impressed and wanting for more. You can tell that R.T. Kaelin took his time to develop his story and characters to give them dimension and bring them to life.




    A quality I find that good authors share is the ability to make their stories come alive, where it becomes so real to them they offer the reader more to explore outside of their book (i.e. J.K. Rowling writing "Quidditch Through The Ages and Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them or J.R. Tolkein's Middle Earth). Kaelin does exactly this. Not only has he written a hefty book full of depth and plot, but from exploring his website and receiving sources from him myself, I see that he has taken his story and breathed life into it.




    So if you couldn't tell, I loved this book. I loved the magic, the drama, the characters, the twists and the mystery. It has all of those elements in one. Usually when I start a book I have to keep telling myself, "just get through the first few chapters, they always get better after that." Not here. I loved that you hit the ground running on the very first page. As you travel through the story with the main characters, you find yourself searching for answers along with them, turning the pages so you can journey onto the next moment with them.




    5 stars, and I can't wait to read the next installment!

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  • Posted May 11, 2012

    Without a doubt, R. T. Kaelin’s Progeny goes on my list of

    Without a doubt, R. T. Kaelin’s Progeny goes on my list of high fantasy to be re-read. With the number of books currently competing for my attention, that is saying a lot.

    At first glance, it seems that Kaelin has written a formulaic quest-type fantasy story. He has elves, mages, orcs and Halflings, a sword and magic. I’ve seen all of these elements appear in stories before. The thing is, I still read many of them, because I’m always looking for one thing I want above all else when I read fantasy. That one thing is story – and without a doubt, Kaelin delivers.

    Teenagers Nikalys and his sister Kenders live in a country where magic is outlawed and viewed as something to be feared. When they witness an act of magic that ultimately destroys their tiny village, along with their parents and all the people they know and love, they are forced to leave the only home they’ve ever known.

    Along with their older brother Jak, they undertake a journey that begins with the intention of finding the elf responsible for the destruction of their home. Meetings with several different persons, almost from the start cause Nikalys and Kenders to find out more about a destiny that had been hidden from them. Much more is at stake than they could ever have believed. Progeny is the story of the first step to them becoming who they were meant to be.

    Let me backtrack a little however. I have actually read two different versions of this book. The first version (which I received from the author) was longer, but had fewer chapters. There was more setup before the action, and a somewhat slower pacing. The second version I read is the one that’s now available for purchase (the e-book format). It has an entirely different prologue, almost twice as many chapters … but is actually a shorter book.

    I was so impressed with the level of storytelling in the original version that I simply had to have the new version, even if it meant that I was basically reading the same book again. I wanted not only to see what had changed, but to know whether Kaelin actually did a better job on the story than the first time around. The changes made the story move along much more quickly. The shorter chapters in particular added a welcome level of tension that resulted in a tighter, more exciting book.

    I became quickly caught up in the characters’ lives – not only Nikalys and Kenders, but also Broedi, Zecus and especially Nundle – and with each page, wanted to know what was happening with them next. By the ending, I was satisfied with where the story had gone and how the first level of resolution had taken place.

    This is an excellent fantasy that you will find yourself wanting to share when you’re done. Like me, I think you’ll be anxiously awaiting the second book in the series. In the meantime, however, Kaelin also has a series of four collections of short stories which expand on the world created in Progeny. These are also an excellent read, and helped feed the addiction just a little.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 30, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

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