Review of STORM OF ARRANON by Robynn E Sheahan.See full issue for 2018 09-03
In the two-planet system that is Arranon and Korin, it is forbidden to bear a child of mixed heritage and Erynn Yager is one. Suffice to say, her true identity has been kept a secret all her life as she lived as a “normal” citizen and later a soldier serving Korin. That is, until someone from Arranon arrived to their military base and told her that she was the only person who could save both worlds from the brink of an alien occupation.
The premise of STORM OF ARRANON seemed interesting – a young woman of forbidden mixed race with remarkable powers called upon to save the two worlds of which she is both from – but the execution felt lacking. The novel started out strong; the first chapter especially was in the perspective of the story’s main antagonists and it promised thrills and excitement. But it quickly receded in the next few chapters.
The characters could have been more developed and more complex but for a huge chunk of the book, they simply were not. There is stiffness in the way the characters interact with each other, perhaps due to the dialogue being stilted.
You tend to believe the relationships between the characters when you get to witness how such relationships developed. That is how readers’ empathy build up and how they start to root for the characters and feel what they are feeling. In the case of STORM OF ARRANON, this was either not present or too rushed. In effect, the huge betrayal in the first half of the book was like a soft droplet of water rather than a crashing wave, and the main romantic element seemed cheesy. There was also a problem with the pacing of the entire book. There were certain parts that dragged on when it wasn’t necessary, and parts that were vital to the plot that was hastily written.
The world-building, however, was spectacular. The magical environment in Arranon, the mystical creatures and the futuristic world of Korin would make you want to be in this world. Sheahan certainly has a flair for setting the scene with vividly clear descriptions. But even that was not enough to redeem the erratic pacing and the lack of well-developed characters and character relationships. Keep in mind, though, that this is only the first installment of a series – so much can still happen.
The premise of STORM OF ARRANON seemed interesting – a young woman of forbidden mixed race with remarkable powers called upon to save the two worlds of which she is both from. The world-building was spectacular. But even that was not enough to redeem the erratic pacing and the lack of well-developed characters and character relationships.
The Rating2 Stars (out of 5): Needs work/not ready for publication. This book might have promise, but it is in need of a rewrite and/or extensive editing.
The Pros & ConsPros: Strong World-Building
Cons: Character Developement, Dialogue, Plot Sometimes Jumpy, Slow in Places