DiscoverEpic Fantasy

Thran Book I: The Birth


Worth reading 😎

A son seeks out his father in a new world teeming with magic and characters from all real and fictional races, waiting to be explored.

This book is a great example of a decent work of epic fantasy. It has a good, solid structure with lots of plot-supporting action, as well as a large cast of characters whose development is masterfully depicted as potentially limitless.

There are two narratives within this book, that of the son, Brutal, and that of the father, Anthall. The slow pace of the first narrative, Brutal's quest and progress, is very deftly counterfeited by the fast, captivating rhythm of the narrative that explores Anthall's fate, leaving the reader ever anxious and curious to find out what's next, as the plot progresses between these two narratives.

Furthermore, this book satisfies to a huge extent the epic fantasy genre's "diversity in race and class" paradigm, with priests, warriors, mages, rogues fleshed out as humans, gnolls, dwarves, undead and many, many more races. Nevertheless, it is worthy of note that women are sparse and that men are dominant in this cast of characters, a choice that may appear to be disagreeable from a feminist perspective but remains a typical trait in the epic fantasy genre.

One more interesting aspect with regards diversity in this book is the dissolution of the binary paradigm in religion. First of all, polytheism reigns supreme in the world of Thran. Secondly, and more importantly, instead of merely having "good" and "bad" gods, a third group, that of the "shadow", neutral gods is introduced. The gray area that they represent in the depiction of religion and how characters worship and why is very intriguing and innovative for a reader of epic fantasy to encounter.

The reader is captivated by an unstoppable, awesome feeling of reading about a new, open world that is ripe for exploration, adventure and conquest. The author successfully shifts any prior expectations that a reader may have towards experiencing a stereotypical fantasy world to a genuine sensation of something untouched and virgin that will uncover under the reader's watchful gaze. Indeed, it is as if a new Dungeons and Dragons game starts with a new dungeon master that completely takes the story to a novel direction and transcends expectations.

All in all, this book is a very good series-starter and leaves the reader anxiously waiting for the second one so that he or she can see how the characters will develop.

Reviewed by

I have studied English and American literature for over six years, and I am currently completing a Master of Arts on English and American Studies. My studies include the ability of critical analysis of literary texts from different perspectives, adhering to different theories of reading.


About the author

It was in the summer of 2012 when Brian McLaughlin dusted off all his old RPG manuals from his youth and picked up his author's pen for the first time - after spending eighteen years in the paper industry. He lives in Wisconsin with his wife Lynda and has two children, Garrett and Rachel. view profile

Published on December 04, 2018

250000 words

Contains mild explicit content ⚠️

Worked with a Reedsy professional 🏆

Genre: Epic Fantasy

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