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The Kimoni Legacy: Initiation


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An exceptionally lush and detailed Epic Fantasy with overwhelming magical conflict and fully-rounded characters.

This is the most epic Fantasy I have read in a long time. Cecil B. DeMille would have a field day making it a film. It is a story of magical and political manipulation occurring in a complex, barbarous world based on ancient times in sub-Saharan Africa. The physical and social settings benefit from rich and plentiful worldbuilding. The actions and mannerisms of the players are recounted in miniscule detail as well.

The three main characters have modern attitudes and ideals, but they somehow survive in this primitive culture, a stratified, cruel and repressive society where child rearing is done by threat and punishment, and 100% success is barely enough. I found it a bit of a stretch that three such characters would be born into the same royal family in such a society. Also, this kind of atmosphere creates a delicate balance, because too much repression and harassment eventually become unpleasant for many readers.

It is an interesting exercise to watch these characters from the points of view of their siblings, as the inner motivations and attitudes of each are so different from what the others observe. These three stand out as fully dimensioned, sympathetic characters who develop naturally as the story progresses. The many secondary characters are also better rounded than usual, and considerable time is spent on revealing personalities, histories, clothing and behaviour.

The rest of the story is taken up with the multi-levelled conflict, with tension boiling under the surface of diplomatic words, and traitors behind every corner. The main external threats the realm faces are both political and magical. Every move is hedged around by a labyrinth of treaties and other considerations. Every maneuver is accomplished through a haggle of office politics, no matter how small the favour, how low caste the servant. 

The magical conflict approaches too much of a good thing. It involves the traditional African range of demons, witches, and sorcerers. Then zombies appear. And teleportation portals. This overabundance actually reduces the suspense, as we are soon sated by the constant new magical powers that seem to solve every scene. The action is somewhat rescued by many battle scenes of all sizes and configurations, fully described in all their gory detail. 

In total, I found this book entertaining but rather overwhelming, although the second half improved once the conflict became more defined and we got to know the characters better.

Highly recommended for fans of political intrigue and epic sagas.  

Reviewed by

Brought up in a logging camp with no electricity, Gordon Long learned his storytelling in the traditional way: at his father’s knee. He now spends his time editing, publishing, travelling, blogging and writing Fantasy, Sci-Fi and Social Commentary, although sometimes the boundaries blur.

Blood on the Plains

About the author

Omari Richards is a debut novelist who specializes in Sword and Soul style epic fantasy. The Kimoni Legacy: Initiation is his first novel. view profile

Published on June 19, 2023

250000 words

Contains mild explicit content ⚠️

Worked with a Reedsy professional 🏆

Genre: Epic Fantasy

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