Science Fiction and Fantasy Association of New Zealand

Prophecys Ruin Prophecys Ruin:
Broken Well Trilogy Book 1
by Sam Bowring

Supplied for review by Hachette New Zealand

Reviewed By: Jacqui Smith

There is something very evocative in Sam Bowring’s writing, something very pictorial, bringing to mind images from fantasy art - something very ethereal in the style of John Howe. To my mind, it is a great pity that the cover art does not reflect this. The novel itself is the highest of high fantasy, with great magical battles and armies clashing, gods disputing, light fighting shadow, and in the middle of it all, a baby, born of prophecy, body and soul torn in two. One baby is taken by light, one by shadow, but they are two halves of one whole.

I do rather think that Bowring somewhat loses the reader in the extended dream sequence which acts as the climax of this novel, but it’s still great stuff, and if not wholly original, it does avoid most of the clichés. One of the strongest moments for me occurs when Losara, near the end of the world, in the depths of shadow, finds a beautiful and delicate flower. He is told that if the Light wins, this beauty will be the first to fade, burned away by the brightness. Very poignant, I thought. Obviously, this trilogy is not going to be one of those routine fantasy epics, with not a new idea in sight. And a good thing, too.

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