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“Mirror Sight” Kristen Britain

As usual when I write about books, especially ones that form part of a series, there is the likelihood of spoilers along the way, and the same sings true for this book as it is the fifth book in the “Green Rider” series by Kristen Britain.

Amazon Synopsis [the GoodReads one was far too long!]

Karigan G’ladheon is a Green Rider – a seasoned member of the royal messenger corps whose loyalty and her bravery have already been tested many times. And her final, explosive magical confrontation with Mornhavon the Black should have killed her.

But rather than finding death, and peace, Karigan wakes to a darkness deeper than night. The explosion has transported her somewhere – and into a sealed stone sarcophagus – and now she must escape, somehow, before the thinning air runs out and her mysterious tomb becomes her grave.

Where is she? Does a trap, laid by Mornhavon, lie beyond her prison? And if she can escape, will she find the world beyond the same – or has the magic taken her out of reach of her friends, home and King forever…?

When I realised that this had been released – it was a complete surprise – it jumped straight up to the “must-read-next” list. I was a little disappointed that it was paperback rather than hardback considering it was just a couple of days after release day – obviously this didn’t affect how the story read or anything like that, but the artwork for the hardback is so detailed and complex – although so is the artwork on the paperback. I think it’s a depiction of Westeros, God of Death.

I was looking forward to jumping back into Karigan’s world as the last book had ended on such a cliffhanger, I just had to know what had happened to our fabled heroine after her trek into Blackveil, her encounter with the Mirror Man and just know, the whole being trapped in a coffin thing. Whilst this book didn’t fail to deliver on some aspects however, I did feel that it was lacking somewhat – and I will get to that in a moment.

Firstly, things that I loved: being back in the vivid world of Karigan, the ease at which everything comes to life, the people, the mysteries of Ethera and both the subtle and not so subtle magic, that for once the main character isn’t some powerful magi – although, she of course is special.  When I first discovered Karigan’s world I found it refreshing, and the same is true for this book… to a point.

I especially enjoyed the fact that this was set in a completely different time the rest of the books so far, I liked that it was a little Steampunk, and just had an added something that was definitely missing from the previous book. I can’t remember if I was writing about books when the previous book was written but certainly liked this one more than that.

I do need to write about the things that annoyed me though, and it’s these things that are making me um and err about what rating to give this on GoodReads.

Whether it’s because I’ve been more subject to feminist articles of late, I really felt that Karigan’s character had diminished somewhat as she spent the entire book relying on other people, other men, to keep her safe. She allowed herself to become a prisoner in a stately home and to incorporate, more or less, into the Professor’s daily life. This isn’t the first time that she allows herself to become a prisoner.

When she isn’t being held prisoner, she is either sick, poisoned or knocked out and relying on other people to do the hard work for her. Again this wouldn’t have been a problem per ce for me as there was something else that I feel is my biggest bug bear as I was making through this 770 page tome… and it was this:

The author didn’t allow us, the audience, be surprised at the events that were unfolding.

There were certain events that would have been more shocking, and definitely would have had more impact, had certain parts of the book been cut out and allowed to have been told from just Karigan’s perspective. Luke, I am looking at you. I also feel that the trips through the mirror shard could have been cut, and maybe a reference made to them as the resolution came together. And Cade… how could a certain thing there not have been seen coming?

The element of surprise would have been more welcome. It’s like the author couldn’t trust her readers to come to the right conclusion, and actually, I think the way it’s been written is a little insulting to the readers intelligence.

Of course, then there is the ending to briefly mention, which makes me question… why bother writing this book at all? The ending basically nullifies the whole book, excluding one detail… so once again we have a filler book much like Blackveil, and High King’s Tomb, and I don’t think that this will do the series any good in the long term, as there is no long term plan for this series, no set number of books to tell the whole story which ultimately suggests that we will see more like this, and that is disappointing.

This being said, I will read the next book, and the one after, until the series completes as I enjoy Karigan and her world.

Have you read this? Is this on your to-read list?

Take it easy folks,