8 Mar

Raven’s Ladder by Jeffrey Overstreet

Following the beacon of Auralia’s colors and the footsteps of a mysterious dream-creature, King Cal-raven has discovered a destination for his weary crowd of refugees. It’s a city only imagined in legendary tales. And it gives him hope to establish New Abascar.

But when Cal-raven is waylaid by fortune hunters, his people become vulnerable to a danger more powerful than the prowling beastmen–House Bel Amica. In this oceanside kingdom of wealth, enchantment, and beauty, deceitful Seers are all too eager to ensnare House Abascar’s wandering throng.


About the author:

Jeffrey Overstreet is the author of The Auralia Thread, the fantasy series which begins with Auralia’s Colors, a thrilling adventure twice-nominated for a Christy Award, and Cyndere’s Midnight. He is an award-winning film critic and columnist, his work appearing in many publications including Image and Paste. He is also the contributing editor for Seattle Pacific University’s Response magazine.

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Lady Carliss and The Waters of Moorue by Chuck Black

Lady Carliss faces the challenge of her life. Can she save the kingdom before it’s too late?

Determined, smart and a master of both the sword and the bow, Lady Carliss has proven herself as a veteran Knight of the Prince. Returning from a mission of aid, Carliss is plunged into adventure once again as she searches for the marauders responsible for kidnapping a friends’ family. Along the way she is reunited with Sir Dalton and discovers that the struggle in her heart is far from over. When Dalton falls to the vicious attack of a mysterious, poisonous creature, Carliss finds herself in a race against time. As Dalton clings perilously to life, she must find the antidote in the distant and strange city of Moorue.

While there, Carliss uncovers the master plot of a powerful Shadow Warrior that will soon overtake the entire Kingdom. Her faith in the Prince and her courage as a knight are tested as she faces evil Shadow Warriors and a swamp full of dreadful creatures. The lives of many, including Dalton’s, depend on Carliss. But she cannot save them all, for time is running out.  She faces an impossible choice: save Dalton, or let him die so that others may live.


About the author:

Chuck Black, a former F-16 fighter pilot and tactical communications engineer, is the author of ten novels, including the popular Kingdom series. He has received praise from parents across the country for his unique approach to telling biblical truths. His passion in life is to serve the Lord Jesus Christ and to love his wife, Andrea, and their six children. He lives with his family in North Dakota.

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My Impressions:

Reading fantasy requires a lot of work.  The pages are populated with fantastic beings.  The landscape is strange;  the language is foreign. Usually there is no point of reference for the reader to use.  Imagination is all the reader has to work with.

Christian fantasy is a little different.  Although the worlds described exist only in the imagination of the author, a familiar thread runs through the books. So it is with Jeffrey Overstreet’s Raven’s Ladder and Chuck Black’s Lady Carlis And The Waters of Moorue.

Raven’s Ladder is the lastest installment of Overstreet’s Auralia’s Thread series.  The first two books in the series are Auralia’s Colors and Cyndere’s Midnight.  The author is currently working on the fourth and last book of the series.  I would suggest anyone interested in this series to begin with book one.  I have not read the first two books, and I was a little lost at first, but I soon became entangled in this fantastic tale.  House Abascar has been destroyed and sent into exile.  Many have forgotten the source of their existence, the Keeper.  King Cal-Raven desires to bring his people to their rightful home and reestablish them as followers of the Keeper, who most often appears in dreams.  Cal-Raven and the people of Abascar face many and diverse obstacles in their journey.  There is open evil seeking to destroy them, and there is a false security and beauty lulling them into accepting good over what is best.  Overstreet uses a fantasy world to expose the struggles we all face in a world that denies God or seeks to find a substitute for Him.  I enjoyed this book and look forward to reading the other books in this series.


My youngest son, Thomas, loved Chuck Black’s Kingdom series (available in the library).  So when I was offered another of Black’s books to review, I jumped at the chance. Lady Carliss And The Waters of Moorue is the fourth book in the Knights of Arrethtrae series.  These books expand on the earlier Kingdom series.  Though written for teens, this book caught my attention immediately.  There is plenty of action for any fantasy lover — dangerous creatures, sword fights, mysterious castles.  The book also has a definite christian worldview, but it is subtle, unless you are looking for it. Thomas was half way through the 6-book Kingdom series before he realized it paralleled God’s story.  I know boys generally read books with knights and dragons, but this book should appeal to girls as well.  The main character, Lady Carliss, is a valiant knight yet someone girls can easily relate to.  All in all I would highly recommend this book.  I will probably get the other books in the series for the library as well.

Highly Recommended.

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