David M. Brown ; Published May 16th 2011 by Createspace (first published May 2011)
The White Oak, Clarendon’s oldest brothel, lured and destroyed men by the thousands. Fezariu was different. He had never been drawn by the White Oak’s vices but the brothel had still ruined him when he was just a boy. Salvation came in the form of the Merelax Mercenaries – Elenchera’s most prestigious hired hands. They gave Fezariu the chance to escape from his past. Immersed in the world of dangerous assignments in the colonies Fezariu longed to forget everything about his childhood but only in facing the past would he ever be free of it.
– Goodreads on Fezariu’s Epiphany
*stares at the cover* … *still stares at the cover* …(This book changes covers often. Too often. It had a blue cover when I wrote this)...
Uhm, yes, there’s something about this cover, I can’t exactly put my finger on it, but there’s something about it that just gives me this uncontrollable urge to stare and stare at it; fabulous cover! Just fabulous! I’d give it a full 5 out of 5, with bells, whistles and all the rest
Now, Fezariu’s Epiphany is supposed to be fantasy; I’m saying “it’s supposed to be” because while reading it, it doesn’t really feel like anything else but true-story, if from older times perhaps.
It kicks off somewhat slow, with a richly put together ‘historical tour’ of the world, then introduces the characters gently, in a paced but charming manner. I’d say the pace picks up later, giving the story a lead-in/lead-out sort of feeling, making me remember those tales on vinyl I used to listen to when I was a child. There was a distinctive sound they made, just before the words started and right after all of them had been uttered, a soft, gentle warning. Well, reading Fezariu’s Epiphany I had that same feeling, as if that rich sound that I deeply loved had both introduced me to the tale, and helped me part with it when it was over.
I felt a surprisingly intense connection to some of the characters; I tend to like/dislike, (or crush upon *rolls eyes*) more then actually care about characters, but in this case, Jessamine and Alycea got glued to my heart somehow and they refused to be parted from it. Fezariu was harder for me to connect with, I’m not sure why; I was very much so interested in what happened to and with him, but more for someone else’s benefit (like his mother’s, for instance) then for his own, I’m not sure why.
I really liked the structure of the novel, the way the prologue and epilogue hugged it all together, the way the plot line was followed, the pace, everything about it. The world created by David M. Brown is nothing short of fascinating, in a fairytale like sort of way, but at the same time giving you the distinct sensation it’s all quite real. It’s a very interesting mix of worlds and words; you’ll also find some intriguing choices, as far as town names go, characters as well.
As far as writing goes, I find this to be a quite rich treat; descriptive, with something of a demure charm, the “language” of the novel is one of universal beauty and proper delight, leaning perhaps more toward the conservative written word, more of the “old-school” good writing. As much as I appreciate that style, I sometimes find it also tempers the pace of the plot, quells tensions that might have urged you to become more emotionally involved in the action itself. Of course, such things are always a matter of personal taste.
The tone is pleasurably mellow, enough so that delicate issues, such as use and abuse, tyranny and cruelty, are really easy to cope with; this is not an aggressive read, by any means, and I find that deeply comforting.
I really did enjoy this read, I found it a perfect fit for my somewhat moody, almost gloomy Sunday afternoon mood; I felt often transported to my childhood, and the tales I loved at that time, something not a lot of reads manage to pull off, and something I deeply enjoy – it’s that sens of wonder, of hidden magic that Fezariu’s Epiphany stirred within me.
I wasn’t ragingly enthusiastic, and I attribute that to my personal mood at the time of reading, and to the mellow-inducing, melancholy-rising effect David M. Brown ‘s writing had on me.
I strongly recommend this to anyone that enjoys fantasy, good writing, charming tales and rich content with lighter, non-shocking imagery.
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