Monday, August 8, 2011

Reign of the Nightmare Prince

Reign of the Nightmare Prince
By:  Mike Phillips
ISBN:  9781936564118
Published July 8, 2011 by JournalStone
Available Format:  Paperback, ebook

My Rating:  ★★★★☆

Supernatural beings with powers of destruction are invading and destroying Rakam’s world.  Rakam and his great-grandfather, Mabetu, must lead their people in a fight for survival.  Survival means defeating an enemy with superior weapons and a thirst for blood. Although it seems like a fight he’s destined to lose, Rakam is willing to die to save his world from certain annihilation.

I received an advanced copy of Reign of the Nightmare Prince from the publisher for proofing and review.

When I began reading this manuscript, I have to say I was a bit unsure about where it was taking me.  At times, I was a bit distracted because it was jumping from one scene to another.  I was having a difficult time imagining the characters and setting for a while.  I was immediately reminded of the European settler’s invasion which eventually drove out the American Indians, but I knew that wasn’t quite right either.  Finally, it is obvious the “Europeans” are far more advanced than I was visualizing, and they are indeed form a future Earth.  I think a few illustrations within this story would go a long way in tying some of the elements together for the reader.

Rakam is an extremely likable and well-rounded character.  You can tell from the very beginning he has a kind soul, and he will be able to accomplish great things.  Of course, I absolutely adore Betu (given my fondness for animals in literature).  The way Rakam takes Betu in and the bond they share just further demonstrates his true character.  My favorite character is Mabetu for his humor and downright spunkiness!  One of my favorite quotes of the story is by Mabetu:

“You had better be delusional,” said Mabetu gruffly. “Or does your wife feel like a hairy old man?”

I think Mike does a great job developing his characters.  I love how the Shaitani are both barbaric and destructive, yet they still possess some redeeming qualities.  It makes it more difficult sometimes to decide whose side you should be more supportive of, because, essentially, we would be the Shaitani if anything were to happen to our world.  How exactly would we behave in a desperate situation?  How have we behaved in our past?  (I’m pretty sure we know the answer to that).

I understand that some may find this book a little difficult to get into, and if you aren’t much of a sci-fi/fantasy sort of person, you may not have the patience to stick with it.  Those of you who do, I believe, will easily be able to find something to love and/or relate to in the story. 

Mike Phillips will be interviewed on JournalStone’s Blog Talk Radio show, JournalJabber, co-hosted by yours truly, on Tuesday, August 9 at 8PM CST.  Tune in to learn more about Mike and Reign of the Nightmare Prince (like where exactly did that title come from?)—and who knows what else!