Narrator: Jake Urry
on 6 May 2016
Length: 5 hrs and 38 mins
Genres: Fantasy, Romance, Vampire, Werewolf
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When his experiment goes horribly wrong, leaving an innocent man dead, Ambrose leaves the Wizard's Guild low in confidence and filled with guilt, for a wilderness rife with dastardly hunters and the surrealist of creatures, in search of a new purpose in life.
In his search for redemption, Ambrose wanders to the campfire of Bertold, a brute of a man who harbors a sadistic fixation with the torture of Bloodsuckers. This discovery opens a door for Ambrose in which he is forced to take a stand. A woman, the most beautiful Ambrose has ever laid eyes upon, is bolted to the ground by her wrists and ankles as Bertold waits for the sun to rise and roast her alive.
The wizard, displaying instant sympathy, calls his morals and magic into action in a bid to rescue the Bloodsucker from the brutal hands of the hunter...and what follows leads Ambrose on the most dangerous adventure of his life.
©2015, 2016 Richard Francis Whittaker (P)2016 Jake Urry
Ambrose is in a self-imposed exile after he accidentally killed a man with his magic. Now this wizard roams the wilderness looking for a purpose and possibly for redemption. He comes across Bertold who has a bloodsucker imprisoned. He’s waiting for the sun to rise and roast her alive. Ambrose won’t stand for this and his actions change the course of his life, bringing unexpected companions into his life along with deadly danger.
This tale had some high points, some amusing moments, and a lot of info dumps. Sometimes I was totally engaged and sometimes I was bored. the villains are really easy to spot being brutish, so that took some of the suspense out of the book.
Florentina is the bloodsucker (vampire) that Ambrose rescued at the beginning of the tale. She’s got some dimension to her. She’s suffering from an illness that means she needs fresh blood. Ambrose vows to find a cure for her but his wizard skills are still in their fledgling state. He bumbles his way through the book. Florentina offers some wisdom and acts like a central spoke around which all the other characters rotate.
Each time we got a new character in this tale, there would be a big info dump that would mostly be their back story. It was a rather tedious way to get introduced to each character. It often took me away from the plot. From Florentina to Reggie to the Wolfboy to even Bertold. It was like reading a character development sheet instead of being an integrated part of the story.
Florentina and Ambrose fall in love almost instantly. It’s not even lust. It’s this deep soul-cleaving love. Since it was so automatic I had trouble getting behind it.
The Tookingtons were amusing. They were these little animated flowers that acted as an honor guard for Florentina. Definitely dangerous in great numbers.
By the end, Ambrose and his crew still have some things to wrap up. I smell a sequel in the making. I was very satisfied to see that Ambrose had found his tribe. He’s the stronger for it.
The Narration: Jake Urry is so good in every book I have listened to him narrate and his performance here doesn’t disappoint. He gives Florentina an accent. The Wolfboy gets his own unique voice. The ladies sound like actual women. Ambrose’s emotions are nicely displayed in this narration.
This review first appeared on Dab of Darkness.