Book Review: The Outlander: Rise and Fall of an Empire (The God Trilogy #1) by Abhijit Haldar
Book: The Outlander: Rise and Fall of an Empire (The God Trilogy #1)
Author: Abhijit Haldar
Plot: 17 years after the Battle of Dert, a war had been waged by Wale over Dorin. The vengeance of Dercallume threatens the whole kingdom as he orders for a dragon-fire. The perished hopes of the outnumbered men of Dorin are revived when Roin Avon comes to the war with an oblivious sword, the Stalwart. Thought to be forged with a soul by alchemy, it is the mightiest weapon in the whole of Darthé that helps them to evade the war and run into exile. They head to the Frozen Kingdom for the Frozen Games, which if won, would let them the strongest weapon of the kingdom.
Definitely a rise of a good series
Huge thanks to the author for providing me with a copy of the book
Before I step into the depths of the book, I want to say how amazed I am at the level of intensity and story development that the book showcases. I was truly blown away by the concept of the book because I am not aware of any other Indian fiction touching upon such a level of intricacy and in depth imagination to the core plot. It really shows that there is a level of talent in the Indian literary world that still remains untouched and undiscovered and I am slowly and gradually learning that I have not been very trusting and crediting towards Indian authors as much as they deserves. Maybe because I was looking in the wrong direction.
Anyways let us come back to the book in hand
The Outlander has a great potential to rival any fantasy novel out there because the core plot has been truly brushed and sieved to narrate a good fantasy fiction and I will admit to that no matter what I felt about the book in general
The book is not without flaws and I really hate to see those flaws in the book and I am probably in the harshest way going to point all those because I truly feel that this book could achieve heights if the author focuses on certain aspects of this book
The book has one major flaw that is narration and that is actually bringing down the book along with it.
The Outlander is a fantasy novel set in a world and time that we do not see in our daily lives so as the first book to the series and being set in a different world, the author should have focused on explaining this world to the readers because without the basic idea as to what and how the world works, it is hard to visualize and comprehend all the stuff that the author is saying in the rest of book.
Sadly there is no proper defining and layout to the world and the book starts right in the heat of the moment and we have no clue about the happenings being described. At times the author does leave breadcrumbs on the world he created but is not sufficient enough to make me understand as how exactly his world works or where our characters came from and where are they heading.
Now leaving apart the confusion about the backdrop, there is another disadvantage to the narration and that is that link or thread required to keep together all the chapters.
If you are reading a particular chapter, you are able to enjoy yourself and even immerse into it but come to the next chapter and it is a new thing all over again and no link to the previous chapter. Each chapter seems cut off from the last and lack that tiny thread that should have tied all of them together.
In short the narration is not smooth and should have a synchronization. The first chapter should make sense and align itself with what is happening in the seventh or eighth or even the last chapter irrespective of the fact that these chapters belong to different characters.
And I had another trouble with the generic names, the author had tried to use for his characters. Normal names like THE GOD, THE CREATOR or THE DESTROYER at times overlaps and creates further confusion over whether he is using it as a name or describing a person
I am guessing that my review is giving an idea that the book is seriously lacking which let me clarify is not the case in fact for the first time I am truly appreciative and in awe of the experiment that the author has done to the language.
The language is a mixture of creative writing with elegance and adornment but at the same time also keeping it simple enough to convey the story. There is a level of elegance to the language that I rarely see. Then there is the core plot and theme which is simply marvelous and absolutely brainy. So the book is a mixture of good and bad with the scales tipping on the good side more
The author truly justifies the genre he has picked but yes the narration takes a beating but is nothing that is irreversible as with a little more caution the narration can really pick up and then there is nothing in the book that is stopping it from being amazing as the language is beautiful which is a rare adjective i use for language and then the core theme is fantastic too. The chapters seem detached as of now but if it maintains an overall smoothness then this a true fantasy read.