Prossia by Raphyel M. Jordan
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
As a part of the Prossia blog tour, Raphyel was kind enough to offer a copy of his book if I would do a review. I’m not a huge sci-fi fan, but I thought I’d give it a shot. At worst, I would retract my offer of review. At best, I’d find an entertaining read.
Prossia surprised me.
Warfare is a large part of Prossia. An alien girl, Alyichai, lives on the planet Gooliun. Her people train from the time they are young to be warriors in case the call for war is sent out. Aly is friends with Cattalice, another high level warrior from her home planet. Aly is different than the others of her tribe because she cannot control her “being”, a weapon others of her tribe use like a natural laser. Aly makes herself better at weapons to make up for the lack of being.
Her people know what her differences are, but they are forbidden to explain them to her. Everyone ignores her differences past the usual childhood teasing.
Aly and Catty are called off to war with their fathers and other members of the planet. Aly becomes a force of destruction. We learn she is a mutation of her people, something called a Sungstra. They are beings capable of extreme warfare. She survives many harrowing trials, surviving through war only to be presented with a choice: Go the way of her people, or set off on her own in search of truth.
I really enjoyed reading the battle scenes, especially later in the book when Aly learns more of her abilities. She disposes of her foes in particularly brutal ways. I liked the play between Aly and her father and the almost opposite relationship between Catty and her father. Tradition versus innovation.
The book really could have used another run through an editor. There were repetitions of “shriek” and “ticking time bomb”. Toward the end of the book, every time someone shrieked or used the phrase ‘ticking time bomb’, I grit my teeth. Ears would “whimper down” and “frown”. Instead of using the word “passed”, it was simply “pass”. When speaking of someone’s middle, it is “waist”, not “waste”. Some of the beings would not “trot” off to do bidding, especially the giant mountains of people termed “heavies”. The villain of the story “trotted” to the heroine in the big fight scene when walking slowly and deliberately toward her would have been much more powerful. I’m anal enough to notice things like that over the course of a book and at times I really had to push through and ignore improper usage and repetition. That was the major flaw of the book.
The ending really wasn’t what I was expecting. I wanted to see Aly take down an entire city of bad guys all by herself, Rambo-style. I was vaguely let down.
All in all, the story is entertaining and kept me flipping pages. Despite the editing errors, I did enjoy the read. I was impressed enough with the book, even with its flaws, to buy a copy despite having a review copy. Raphyel is a great storyteller and I hope he continues this series. I have to find out if the epilogue ends horribly. If it does, Raphyel and I are going to have words.
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