World building is really the most important thing when it comes to storytelling. More so, the world around the characters has to have rules and meaning to hold things together well. Within the exploration of the world comes possibilities and the means to create a story that leaves the reader wondering. A review then of the first work in the Settlement series by Warren Cook today which has many interesting aspects to explore.
It’s when a myth isn’t quite what is expected, an action taken isn’t what one might expect it to be that things become interesting. Challenging the viewpoints of the characters can bring conflict or enlightenment. The question becomes what does it all matter when the story closes.
- Title: New Eden
- Author: Warren Cook
- Published By: Amazon Digital Services
- Length: 102 Pages
- Format: eBook
- ASIN: B0BTXBJJWJ
- Publishing Date: February 4, 2023
- This work in Kindle Format at Amazon.com
The work tells of:
Grayson Alexander survived the impossible war in a world that science thought could not exist. Returning home, he just wanted to rebuild his relationship with his grown children, Kate now a scientist and James a soldier. Then the unified global governments invited him to return to the world of magic and wonder as a guide and advisor. He would have refused, except that his children were already on the way, their curiosity defying their father’s warnings. And so, Grayson returned, hoping to protect his children and repair that fatherly bond with the children he barely knew anymore, as well as hoping to forget the horrors of battling the Daya’Layn and their superior forces. He was simply to advise those who had never been to the wonderous world or were perhaps unfamiliar with the challenges they might face erecting a research camp behind enemy lines. The settlers would need him, even if they didn’t like him, even if he hated them.
His return had not gone unnoticed by some of the locals, either, including the gods, the devils, and the doomed love he left behind. While Grayson tries to focus on his family, the past he tried to lock away tries to resurface against his will, while a god he had wronged seeks retribution.
It is said that no good deed goes unpunished. Whether that is by one’s own hand or by others, there is always a price to be paid. A world of magic isn’t always explainable by science. A viewpoint isn’t always right and more often than not the reality becomes ignored. One should heed when warnings are given, not brush them aside for both the light and dark have their own dangers after all.
The work is a unique mixture of fantasy, science, human nature and all of the good and bad that comes from humanity going to a place they do not understand. It’s tragic in many ways, the main character feels very broken and as things begin to come apart, the reality is telling for him. The complexity of the writing, the characters themselves and the mythos created are fascinating and make this work a page turner to see what happens next.
At the same time the sheer stupidity of those of science is so very telling about them and the arrogance seen in characters on both sides of the divide starts to make a number of them seem so very two dimensional in their thinking and personalities. There does have to be conflict of course, and the history told makes it very clear that too many seem to have forgotten their history or cannot see the truth in front of their eyes. Whether from the world of science or that of magic, the friction seems to never end. When the conflicts come, as they do, you can’t help but feel disappointed in many of the main characters being so arrogant when they didn’t need to be.
There are succubi and incubi characters to be found within the work, but this isn’t a story about them. They are minor characters as a whole, save for one conflict that was just so disappointing in its reflection of misplaced belief and horrid actions. Setting that aside, the succubi and incubi are not stereotypical even if they have horns and tails. They are, in a sense, familiar to me and I honestly would have liked to know more about them and their society. But that’s not what this story is about, perhaps that will come in a later work.
The writing is, again, very good. The characters are unique and overall the series has a lot to explore. Given that my interest in in the succubi and incubi aspects however, it leaves me wanting. Not necessarily a bad thing, but we’ll see what the next work in the series tells about them, if anything more.
Three and a half out of five pitchforks.
While there are succubi and incubi to be found in this work, it isn’t focused on them with regards to the greater story. That’s understandable as there are many myths and legends to be explored. It is a very unique beginning to what I expect will be a very complex and grand series and it’s one that I do feel is very interesting. Certainly nothing is what it may be, the mysteries and riddles seemingly have no end. But that is what makes up the core of a good tale to be told.