You Are What You Read

Reviews of books as I read them. This is basically a (web)log of books I've read.

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Location: Lawrenceville, Georgia, United States

I am a DBA/database analyst by day, full time father on evenings and weekends.

Sunday, December 09, 2007


Sentinel is D. M. Paul's sequel to One Wizard Place. It is a short Young Adult book.

The story starts with Fox Strongbow, a young sentinel, and his mentor Eldin. The sentinels are the protectors of the Elven king, and these are the last two. Fox has completed his training, and Eldin takes him on his final task. They travel to an island in the north to get materials to make his elven cloak: the camouflage skin of a lizard and the tough threads of a giant spider.

They fly their two large birds to the island with little trouble. When getting the spider threads, they have trouble when Eldin gets stuck in a web and one of the giant spiders nearly eats him. But then they leave and travel home. On the way home, an old black dragon attacks them. He wears down Eldin until he finally casts a spell to takes over Eldin's body with his soul.

Drago, the black dragon, takes Eldin's body and hatches a plan to capture the Wyrd, an ancient word of power. He gets a map, and using Eldin's knowledge, steals the key from the Elven city. Fox discovers that his mentor has been possessed, and that they original purpose was to protect the key and the Wyrd.

Fox and Enod, the Elven wizard, meet up with Kase and Murdox, the young man and his wolf-dog partner in the Incantation Enforcement Agency. Together, the four of them travel to the lowest level of the multi-level city of Cloudview, where they find the ancient temple that houses the tablet of the Wyrd. Drago fights a giant flame dragon, defeating it. Fox fights a Nargoyle an defeats it. The party of four catch up with Drago as he looks at the Wyrd and realizes he cannot read it. Kase uses a soul sucker to get the old soul out of Eldin, and everything is saved.

The story is exciting in parts, though slow in others. I did not enjoy the story as much as the first story, though part of that may be the excellent narrator of the audio. The first half of the book is missing fun dialog and play between Kase and Murdox. It is refreshing when they join the story. Fox and Eldin are both quiet, and there isn't much dialog or interaction between them. The fight scenes are pretty good, though a little simple. The different settings are fun.

I found the character of Fox more interesting in theory than in practice. He is almost too good, and too skillful. The nature of his special skill is not really explained, though it could just be that he's good enough to be a sentinel. The plot took one strange turn, Drago's possession of Eldin, which caught my attention. But other than that the story was relatively predictable. Given that only half the book is interesting and missing the best characters, it's only a C+.


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