Fantasy isn’t usually my thing, but I’m trying to build a nice library of books for my son to read when he becomes a teenager. So that’s why I cracked open A Draw of Kings by Patrick W. Carr. It’s the conclusion to “The Staff and the Sword”, trilogy.
See my immediate problem? I should have read the first two books first! Ooops… That’s probably why it took me a good twenty pages to figure out what the heck was going on. Luckily, Carr is a very competent storyteller and manages world building quite well. You can tell that his brain is half math, because his story structure is organized, there are systems in place, and things make sense.
For readers who are new to “The Staff and the Sword”, there are two major concepts: 1) the will of “Deas” is able to be determined by casting lots, and 2) the evil spirit of Malus can overtake living creatures and turn them into monsters. So a panther is just a panther unless it’s been corrupted by Malus, in which case it’s a MONSTER panther. If church people cast enough stones, they’ll be able to figure out whom that panther will strike next.
Not only was the premise clever, but I’d like to give Carr bonus points for including strong female characters that didn’t seem cartoonish.
P.S. I received a free copy of this book from Bethany House in exchange for my honest opinions and review.