Light & Dark: The Awakening of the Mageknight
by D. M. Fife
Plot Summary:Danny Firoth is an average thirteen-year-old who finds himself at the beginning of his eighth-grade year, struggling with some of the more common concerns that plague a boy of his age: bullies, homework, and his mother. Sabrina Drake is the new girl. She is beautiful and spellbinding, but carries a fantastic secret. Together, they begin an epic journey to become Knights of the Light.
Expecations:I was interested in this fantasy story with elements of dragons and knights and I was looking forward to the exploration of a new mythology
Review:The author starts with the interesting idea that a card game, called Knights, is in fact true and that you can pick your alliance -whether with the Light, Dark or Grey and these factions are fighting in real life. When Danny unlocks a hidden talent within himself, and then comes across a dragon, he is ushered into the realities of the card game he loves to play. With these discoveries, he finds that four of his friends also (and mysteriously) have some of the same abilities as he does. During the summer they all are admitted into a school that teaches children or squires of their ability to use their talent and fight against the Dark.
I found the mythology of the story was really well done. There are realistic details about the rules and boundaries of the Light and Dark and interesting ideas in having a “Bonded” weapon that you can communicate with. The writing in this book didn’t feel very realistic for the age of the characters however, and there were alot of overly described passages and repetitive phrases and some homophone errors (waste instead of waist for example). All this took me out of the story many times, but there are some great, exciting scenes, and Danny as the hero was a strong character. The other boys, although they had distinct personalities, seemed to clutter up the pace of the story as they all shared in many scenes and had many ideas and comments to add to the narrative. The romance between Danny and Sabrina has much room for development and it would be interesting to see how the author develops that in the next books in the series.
Overall, though I thought this story could have used more editing and more focused writing, I thought this was a great idea for a story, with some fantastic scenes.
review copy kindly provided by the author
(Edit: As of early September, the author has done some editing to correct grammar issues)