Tuesday, 8 July 2014

Altacia

Written by: Tracy M. Joyce
Published by: Odessey Books
Pages: 271
Amazon UK: Altaica

'Look at her – she’s Hill Clan. Even the Matyrani don’t like them …' 
Isaura – little is known about her race, but much is whispered. Born to refugees, she grows up enduring racism and superstition within a community that fears her. She has few friends, and those she treasures. Trapped, she longs for escape to a different life. 
Escape is only the beginning of her troubles. Having fled an invading army with her friends, Isaura is faced with heinous choices in order to survive. Secrets from her past emerge to torment her and threaten to destroy all she holds dear. Her struggles forge a bond with an ancient power – a power which may transform or consume her. Old hatreds and superstitions are renewed and at her most vulnerable she learns the true nature of those around her. 
Her only hope lies in a foreign land – a land rich in tradition; ruled by three powerful clans. A land with a history marked by warfare; where magic as we know it does not exist. Instead what is here, in abundance, is a more primal power. 
Survival carries a high price. 
Welcome to Altaica.

My Rating: 3.5/5

I was given this book in return for an honest review from Odessey Books through NetGalley. The synopsis/blurb of this book captivated me. It sounded interesting and slightly similar to Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas, in terms of being a High Fantasy genre, so I was looking forward to what it was all about. This book is action packed right from the very beginning, it hits the ground running so to speak, showing that the pace of the book is extremely fast and not drawn out in the slightest.
'Nic, I couldn't leave him behind. He's the only father I've ever known.'
Having said this, even though there was action packed into the book and it flowed easily throughout I found it really hard to connect with it. Isaura is the main character, yet she isn't part of the book for a long time after the beginning. Instead we are told stuff about her from other characters, which feels strange to me considering she is the main character. Its a unique writing style but it's not a writing style that I really understood. In doing this, we learn a lot about other characters but there are so many other characters I found it hard to remember them and what they actually did and who they were in the book. Which is partly why I found it so hard to connect with the book, because I was constantly confused as to what was happening and whose perspective I was reading from.
'No,' was her terse reply. 'I am Asha. I must see Clan Lord Shajahan.'
It has a compelling storyline that uses subtle hints of racism throughout it, which really brings depth to the novel. I loved how strong yet vulnerable Isaura seemed. How like an outsider she felt in her own village community. It made the story gripping and meaningful, which is the one defining feature that I loved in the novel itself. Not only this but there was more darker themes intertwined with the novel, that sprang up and surprised you from time to time. Again making the storyline more meaningful and engrossing. 
This voice was so calm, so soothing. She felt absolutely safe.
Overall Altaica has everything you need from a good fantasy novel: action packed, fast pace and a unique world. For me, I just had trouble connecting with it, so I couldn't get into it as much as I wanted. Having said this, it wasn't a bad read it was just a little complicated at times. I would recommend this to people who do love High Fantasy because it has a really interesting world and really interesting themes running throughout the novel. But for me, as a high fantasy novice, I didn't enjoy it as much as I thought I would, which is why my rating is 3.5.

Altaica (The Chronicles of Altaica, #1)