This is a standalone book that reads like an EPIC.
Flamewalker is a complex and involving read for lovers of all kinds of fantasy. The story begins with a young firemaiden to be, Khalira about to find out if she is to be a Flamewalker, and if so what path she is to take. A kingdom away a father faces a tragedy that will forever alter two kingdoms.
So. . . this is a great book. I was surprised by exactly how good it was. Reading Flamewalker was very much like an old school courtship. First there is the introduction, a bit formal but promising, then a few tentative first dates that settle in a budding romance. Vogel’s characters are deeply interesting. Their thoughts, desires, dreams and fears are addictive. They are tendered gently, just enough to hook you before the action starts.
On a deeper level, Flamewalker has more than it’s fair share of duality. The male/female principles are echoed in the heroine and her nemesis, the north and south kingdoms of Saria and Banol, and the lust for power, tempered with the knowing endurance of justice. All this not good enough?
The villain. He is just a guy. A guy that has gone through tragedy. In most books heroes and villains are forged in some tragedy and suddenly they are changed forever. Tired tropes right?
Prepare to not see this with Flamewalker’s big bad, and he is Big and he is Bad. But his descent into madness is a journey of degrees. The reader gets a real sense of the progression, and best yet, Vogel makes it logical.
It’s a good story. It’s a lesson in life. It’s a moral to aspire to. Most of all it’s High Fantasy at it’s very best. I am not ashamed to say that this book brought a tear to my eye more than once. The initial scene with Adon is so stirring that I had to put the book down twice. The power to evoke emotions like that and capture the suffering is a rare and wonderful talent. Wendy Vogel is a name not to forget, she is sure to be a voice that will resonate in years to come.
Flamewalker is available through Amazon and limited retailers.