I watched a video of a writer giving a lecture to college class and he discussed his reasoning for writing fantasy as opposed to other genres. The paraphrase of his answer was this: he can include the excitement of a thriller, the intrigue of a mystery, the relationships of a romance, and all with the inclusion of dragons.
But why stop there? In Brian Guthrie’s Rise, he starts with a science fiction setting based on a familiar idea, the scarcity of water, then takes the world and literally breaks it into dozens of floating pieces (or shells in this case) and tops it all off with the addition of dragons.
The main character Logwyn is is tasked by her Queen to find and interview four individuals in hopes of understanding and piecing together the answers of a problem that threatens to destroy everything. Unlike many fantasy novels, it is not necessarily Logwyn’s job to take action, but instead to sort the pieces of the puzzle in hopes of uncovering the answers that seem to be eluding the Queen. That perspective, along with the recounting of the tales from her interviews give plenty to hook and draw the reader deeper into the world.
The twist of having the world broken into different shells instead of kingdoms or regions adds another level of complexity. Most people grow up knowing about the other shells, but never visiting or meeting others from any other than their own. Logwyn’s puzzle effects them all, but isn’t the only connection. Across the shells is a network of knowledge and information. The network controls the flow of water to different areas of different shells and that network is breaking down, decaying.
The more you read and the further you dive into the world the more you get sucked in wanting to not only help find the answer for the Queen, but the desire to learn the stories of these people Logwyn is interviewing and what is it that connects them all so deeply.
Where are the dragons you ask? If tracking down four different stories and solving a problem that threatens the whole of existence isn’t enough, there are always dragons striking seemingly from nowhere while raining terror and stealing lives when unexpected. The dragons hold an additional puzzle piece, but what, and why? Those questions and others are left hanging while the reader pines for the next installment of this epic series.
Interested? Buy Rise from Inkshares – tiny.cc/risenovel
Don’t forget the upcoming sequel. – tiny.cc/fallnovel
Follow him @nidfar on Twitter to find out what he’s working on next.