Title: Catalyst Moon: Incursion
Author: Lauren Garcia
Series: The Catalyst Moon Saga
Reviewer: Larry / John
Release Date: July 15, 2016
Genre(s): Fantasy / Fiction / Romance
Page Count: 292 pages
Heat Level: 0 flames out of 5
Rating: 4 stars out of 5
Blurb: In Aredia Mages are feared, and kept like prisoners by sentinels – Warriors sworn to protect the world from magic. So what happens when a mage and a sentinel are forced to rely on each other to survive?
Kali, a crippled mage who longs to escape her painful past, travels to meet a powerful healer in Whitewater City. But on the way her sentinel escort is decimated by monstrous raiders, leaving her with a single guardian, Stonewall: a sentinel with nothing but his chosen name and his faith in the gods. Together, Kali and Stonewall must learn to work together to survive a harrowing journey while demonic creatures from the north invade their lands.
Meanwhile, the mages and sentinels of Whitewater City are drawing battle lines and preparing for war – against one another.
What will await them should they ever reach their destination?
Review:Discrimination, bigotry, and prejudice were the norm in Aredia. People were segregated into casts or piers, upper pier people didn’t associate with those beneath them nor did they feel comfortable around anyone who didn’t fit into their neatly defined system.
Mage, moon-blood, and other derogatory slurs for the Magic-Users, such as Kalinda, were often used to hide their fear of the unknown. To further isolate their “enemies” Mages were held captive with few if any abilities to control their lives.
When Mage Kalinda Halcyon requested a transfer to Whitewater city hoping a more powerful mage could heal her birth defect leg, she began a journey she never imagined.
Mages are magic-users, some more powerful than others, but nonetheless, they had powers that when controlled could do wondrous things, from healing the near dead, to moving through time and space. Many had not fully cultivated their powers and most didn’t even know the extent of those powers.
When the caravan carrying Mage Halcyon was ambushed by a rogue nomadic tribe, Sentinel Stonewall and Kalinda flee to save their lives. Thus begins the journey of discovery for both the guarder and the guarded.
Garcia paints a great picture of fear and mistrust as these two strangers navigate their countryside trying to get back to Whitewater, save their lives, and learn about the other. Their journey is met with danger, disruption, and eye opening incidents that provide the opportunities for discovery, both of self and the other.
During their harrowing journey we are introduced to the life of the Sentinel through their eyes as they attempt to maintain the peace in and out of Whitewater City. We learn about their need for Hematite as both a drug and control item, their dedication to their positions, their reasons for joining this elite force, and their need for belonging – that most will never achieve.
We also see inside the Mage mind, learning what they are, how they work magic, their goals and longings, as well as their hatred for the Sentinels that guard and keep them captive. Two different people who are attempting to live their lives with a system that prevents both from attaining their dreams.
Catalyst Moon: Incursion is the first book in The Catalyst Moon Saga and unfortunately ends in a cliffhanger with many plots left unfinished. If you enjoy fantasy, are will to read a book knowing that your questions will not be answered, then read Catalyst Moon.
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