Book Review: Invasion of the Ortaks: Book I The Knight
Princess Egny of Eniktronia goes on a journey to Borg Castle along with her guards. The castle is located at the end of a mountainside in Bending Pass and curves through Utanium Mountains towards the Kingdom of Antonia. In the duration of their trip, she feels like they are being watched so as they settle at The Fat Pig Inn for a night, she asks the owner if he has seen anything suspicious lately. Marius, the owner, tells her about rumors of Ortaks preparing for war and that some strangers dropped by to ask distances between locations on military bases and each member of the king’s court who came often. Princess Egny starts to worry about the possibility but sleeps it off. She wakes up with a feeling that she’s no longer alone in the room and sure enough, she is brutally attacked. Her warrior skills save her, but the incident poses a threat that a war is forthcoming. With six kingdoms and six kings, the land of Esthopia has been peaceful for more than one-hundred years. Is it the end of that peaceful era?
The Knight is the first book to Esthopia Sagas: Invasion of the Ortaks by Sveinn Benonysson. This fantasy story comes in six installments that will capture the readers’ attention through the adventures and characters that hail from six kingdoms: Eniktronia, Montania, Serpenia, Antonia, Otanga, and Hergia. The author was inspired to write these fantasy novels after reading the Icelandic Sagas and the classic works of world-famous authors like The Brothers Grimm and Charles Dickens. His great interest in world history drove him to create the wonderful world of “Esthopia.” And I’m glad he did.
Magical was the first adjective that popped into my mind to describe The Knight in one word. It has such fascinating geography of the world of Esthopia: Fairwood Forest, Sign Valley, Lake Etu, and The Great River were just few of the many places that have vivid descriptions, making my reading experience more like watching a movie that would win Best in Cinematography. Sveinn has the gift of showing a story, rather than telling it; his interpretations of the places as well as their respective location transported me to Esthopia – I joined Princess Egny, Sir Klaus, Asgrim, and Christopher along with many other characters, and not to mention, the unidentified monsters and good elves.
There are many things I love about this book: (1) the instant pull from its strong opening got me hooked that I finished reading it in just one day, (2) the comical character of Asgrim and his tandem with Sir Klaus sparks a bromance that reduces the story’s tense moments, (3) it is packed with diverse characters that are supported with backstories, (4) their encounters with mythical creatures make the book more compelling, (5) Christopher and Clara’s connection as well as Princess Egny’s attraction to Christmund makes me feel young at heart, and lastly (6) every chapter has a surprising incident or a new character, making it simply hard to put down.
I highly recommend this book to readers who love fantasy novels though I will be limiting it to mature readers due to some violence. The story will pull readers into the incredible world of Esthopia, so there is absolutely nothing to dislike about it; it’s the perfect fantasy novel for readers who want to escape from the real world. Overall, I’m giving this a rating of 5 out of 5 stars. It’s very artistic, original, and magical.
© 2020 Shey Saints