by M. C Planck

Reviewer Rating:
5
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Review

This book is awesome, SciFi hiding as fantasy or Fantasy pretending to be SciFi I couldn't tell but it really didn't matter! There were certainly some instances of suspension of disbelief but excellent payoff. Good characterization, decent pacing, good world building...

Christopher Sinclair, a gentle souled mechanical engineer wakes up in a strange bed with a strange woman, in a strange land where no one speaks English. It must be a dream but even for a dream this is too weird. Turns out Christopher fell through space to another place altogether and, Toto, this ain't Kansas. This world is a place/dimension peopled by medieval folk, with magic and strangely uneven technology. Katana swords, suits of armor, horses and stones which cast light without heat. Christopher is being sheltered by a priest, Pater Svengusta, and his "wench" (for lack of a better word) Helga. One day while earning his keep by chopping firewood he gets involved in a civil dispute between some serfs and a ranked man. Christopher doesn't even speak the language but he cannot stand for what is happening, and so, the gauntlet is thrown. The only way to save Christopher is to bring him into the fold. Using magic Cardinal Faren communicates with Christopher that he must pledge himself to the service of the Bright Lady, and in so doing enlist in the army for the next three years. In trade, the church will resurrect him if he dies during the duel (I know, right?!). Bewildered and heartsick Christopher feels this might be the only way to survive this harsh world until he can find his way back home so he agrees. That night in the Chapel while meditating on the Bright Lady Ostara Christopher has a vision and ends up pledging himself to the service of the Brightlady's companion Marcius the God of War (and Strength, War, Luck,and Travel!). This pledge grants Christopher certain powers, he can now speak the languages of this new land, he is granted rank meaning he has magic and access to the knowledge that comes with it, oh as well as making him the only Priest of the God of War that this land has seen in many years. Magic, swords, backyard chemistry and resurrection, this book kicks so much butt!

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