Fans of Robert Jordan’s Wheel Of Time series will want to give this chunky doorstep of a book a look.
The Unseen War saw the end of a life ruled by the imperious Augurs, who appeared to lose their fearful abilities, and are now considered extinct. Left in their wake, the Gifted have only managed to survive by agreeing to abide by The Four Tenets, those who disobey become Shadows, stripped of powers, branded and the lowest of the low.
Davian is Gifted, as are his good friends Wirr and Asha, who have all been kept safely at a special school. Davian knows his gift is different to that of his friends, and is terrified of failing tests that may lead to shadow status. So, when a visiting Elder offers a way out, Davian accepts rather than face failure and banishment. What he does not quite realise is that sinister forces are at work.
What is most joyful about this read is the simplicity of the narrative. Simplicity must not be mistaken for predictability, there are numerous surprises to be found within these silky, smooth pages. There is action aplenty and an ample spattering of violence, which is thankfully neither gratuitous or gorily graphic.
Islington is not ashamed to admit that he has drawn inspiration from the likes of Jordan and Brandon Sanderson, but inspiration aside this is a whole new world with a fresh fantasy streak of its own.