Tuesday 6 June 2017

Review on Dark Lands #1 Requiem

When Webb Thompson wakes in an unfamiliar land with no recollection as to how he got there, he is fearful for his life. After a battle with some grotesque, alien like creatures, Webb and his sister, Sundown, run into Uncle Mike. Finally someone they know who can explain what is going on! There is only one problem, Uncle Mike died several years ago. Webb and Sundown soon discover they have died, leaving them in the Dark Lands, a world between the living and the dead. However, there is a way for them to return to the land of the living, they just need to find the right path. The Dark Lands are anything but peaceful, and the siblings must help defeat the Dark Man before he finds a way to return to the land of the living and wreck havoc.

After reading quite a few contemporary books, I was excited to start a new fantasy series! This book follows Webb, a seventeen year old boy who finds himself waking up in an unknown land, along with his younger sister, Sundown. I loved how the book immedietely gave us questions to ask, such as where were they, how had they got there, and what on earth was chasing them. I thought the chase scene was a brilliant way to start the book, as it instantly had me hooked on the story.

The world building in this book was fantastic! I think I was imagining Glorian as looking similar to Hogwarts, so of course I immedietely wanted to visit. I also loved how they just had to think about what food they wanted to eat, and it would appear on the table in front of them. Imagine having that power! I adored the animals that seemed to only exist in the Dark Lands, particularly Gustafson the Felidaes, a big cat like creature. However I did find the Whoop-Dingers ridiculous, due to their name sounding like it had been pulled straight from a Roald Dahl book. As these are one of the more menacing and frightening creatures Webb comes across, I felt as if their name didn't fit them at all, and would have been more suited for a cute and tame creature. All of the Glorians having a power was also interesting, and I particularly adored Sundown's power. I did however feel as if Webb's power was a little boring, as every YA fantasy protagonist seems to have similar abilities to Webb.

I adored the characters in this book, especially Sundown. I felt as if she had a more natural response to what was happening, and I felt bad for her having been taken away from her friends and family at such a young age. Although I did like Webb, he was a little too angry to say the least. It made me wonder what had happened to him while he was alive to make him that way. I adored Caleb, and felt bad for him when Webb accused him of being a traitor. I thought Caleb was a sweet character who just wanted to have a friend, and I felt Webb treated him unfairly. I was however happy that Webb eventually apologised to him.

Sadly there were a couple of things I didn't like, one in particular being that Webb accuratley predicted who the traitor was long before it was revealed. In these circumstances, I always like to be shocked. I like when the sweet, fatherly figure turns out to be the villain, so I was disappointed when it turned out to be someone who Webb hadn't trusted from the start.

Another thing I didn't like was the romance between Raven and Webb. Although Raven's age is never mentioned, she is described as being a woman, and I pictured her as being in her early twenty's. The fact she was attracted to a seventeen year old boy seemed weird to me, and although they were mutually attracted to each other, I felt as if it didn't go beyond them finding each other physically attractive. They didn't spend enough time together to “fall in love” but I felt as if it was trying to imply that Raven was in love with Webb. I felt as if the mutual attraction came out of nowhere, as although Webb was instantly attracted to Raven's appearance, there was nothing to imply that the feeling was mutual. I found the situation a little uncomfortable, as there was no build up to their feelings, and it felt as if it had been thrown in for the sake of a romantic subplot. I also felt as if the book needed more female characters overall, as Raven and Sundown are the only two that are frequently mentioned.

I enjoyed this book overall, and I'm planning to immediately devour the sequel! There are still many questions left unanswered, and Webb and Sundown are both past the “tutorial” phase, and are ready to explore their powers on their own. I would love for the Dark Man to have more of a presence in the next book, as he is still a very mysterious character. I recommend this book for YA fantasy lovers, and for all the Potterheads!

Dark Lands: Requiem is now available to purchase!

  | Amazon Book Depository

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