In The Legend of Alexandros: Titans of Chaos, two cataclysmic events change the course of the lives of three Titans: One event puts them in stasis in the Underworld for hundreds of years, and the other brings them back. In the intervening years, a great warrior, Belen Alexandros, seeks to avenge his parents’ deaths, until the wizard Alistair arrives to change the purpose of his actions. In this quest story, a fellowship of men, Titans, and a wizard set out to save their world from an evil demigod, but there are more forces at work in this land than the group imagines.
The exotic and varied characters of Albert Cory Hernandez’s fantasy world—unicorns, fairies, a vampire queen, and mermaids—are as unique in personality as they are in species. In a fashion reminiscent of Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings, the journey begins with the wizard gathering the necessary members of his team. Though none of the characters fall out of the predictable type of creatures found in fantasy novels, the author’s descriptive style throughout his world building is delightful nonetheless: “One by one the Fairies landed on the bright green grass, covering the ground with every color imaginable … One by one the Fairies awakened the sleeping travelers … Archard and Viktor had never seen such magnificent wonder … The Fairies covered their arms completely, creating a sleeve of marvelous colors. The brothers turned to each other and for the first time in so long, they felt a tiny spark of joy.”
The author is equally adept at creating a very dark atmosphere, as in this passage, which depicts not only a contrast of atmospheres from the previous example, but also illuminates the author’s ability to handle both. “The walls were engulfed by scorching enflamed spikes, with the souls of the dead pierced onto them. They reached out slowly for help and screamed out in agony. Large executioners wearing the blood of their victims ripped and pulled at the wicked dead and enjoyed doing so.”
The narrative jumps from setting to setting and from one point of view to another before the story becomes clear to the reader. The lack of breaks between shifts in time and place causes additional confusion, forcing the reader to backtrack to figure out what has occurred. The story might change from a conversation at night in the forest to the next day in a Centaur village, with no delineation between the two. What’s more, the characters aren’t introduced quickly enough to elicit immediate reader empathy.
Though overwrought and overwritten at times, The Legend of Alexandros: Titans of Chaos eventually pulls the reader into the story, keeping the pages turning until the end.
Donna Russo Morin
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