Review of Red Leaves and The Living Token by Benjamin David Burrell

Burrell creates a wonderful fantasy world in Red Leaves and The Living Token. There are three distinct races and interesting characters within each race. I love the parent/child family dynamic which infuses the narrative. The relationship between Raj and his son Emret makes this novel worthwhile. As does the relationship between the Master Cleric Bedic, his daughter Moslin (who is Emret’s nurse) and her daughter Sinesh. There is true sweetness radiating between them which I found very appealing.

The action is good and the tension rises throughout the novel as more and more people become aware of the token. Lord Valance is an interesting villain. He has good and negative qualities and I found myself wonderfully surprised at his intelligence and nuance.

I enjoyed Red Leaves and the Living Token very much but there were a few things which bothered me. Burell used the same descriptive words within close proximity to each other and so I sometimes found myself confused about who was doing what.

Emret is driving the action but it is Raj who truly seems to be the protagonist. Indeed it seems Emret is not in charge of his own destiny until closer to the end and then it feels Raj is being pulled along. This also gets a tad confusing.

Still this was a wonderful book, and I had so much fun reading it. My only final comment was I thought it would have more closure at the end so I guess now I will have to look forward to the sequel.

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