Quest of the Dreamwalker (Corthan Legacy Book 1)
By Stacy Bennett
Narrated by Zachary Johnson
Publisher: Miramae Press
Format: Audible Audio
Unabridged: 14 hrs and 48 mins
A perfect captive, Cara didn’t know her will had been stolen until she escapes with borrowed courage.
Cloistered in the Black Keep with only her father for company, Cara is an unwitting prisoner bound by chains of ignorance and lies rather than iron–until she meets a captured mercenary in her father’s dungeon. He kindles within her a spark of compassion she never knew she had and lends her an unfamiliar strength. But, the mercenary is slated to die, sacrificed to her father’s magic like all the others. Only this time, Cara can’t turn a blind eye. Unable to endure her father’s cruelty any longer, she vows to help the mercenary escape.
Now, as they flee to a world she’s only dreamed of, she finds defiance has a steep price. Her very existence endangers everyone she has come to care about. Who is she that her father refuses to let her go? To uncover the secret of her past, she must unravel the mystery of her dreams and claim the heritage of her own magical blood—before her father claims her as the last sacrifice.
Wow! Well this was my bombshell for 2017. I admit I went in with an open mind but not expecting a whole lot. I could not have been more wrong.
Side note: Please excuse any misspelling of names. This is an audiobook review. I made every effort to research proper spellings at the time this was written.
Cara is shackled to the Black Keep by the lies of her father, the sorcerer Sidonius. An unwilling pawn in his quest to achieve immortality, she lives a bleak existence of solitude. That is until freedom and friendship present themselves in the unlikely form of two of her father’s captives, mercenaries Captain Khoury and Archer. Through them, Cara finds not only the strength to escape but the means to set on a journey to discover the truth of her past and the power that lies within her own blood. But her adventure does not come without cost. Can Cara stop her father and avoid becoming his final sacrifice?
Quest of the Dreamwalker is a character driven, epic fantasy, backed by an incredible plot. Cara begins the story as a young girl who has been manipulated and used repetitively. She is meek and helpless. Lost. Through the unlikely guidance and support of Khoury and Archer, she evolves into someone complex and driven but not perfect or without weaknesses. The author brings together an unexpected ensemble that provides a dynamic and ever-changing setting, playing effortlessly on feelings of loss, fear, love and courage as we follow Cara and her companions on their quest. I found myself admiring and appreciating various aspects of each new encounter.
A rich plotline offers a story full teeming with depth that supports continual growth. While world building unfolds slowly, it is in a rewarding manner that fosters a viable setting that feels almost familiar and tangible. This is an adventure based on exploration. Exploration of characters and exploration of the land. Each scene is a moment to be relished as we are immersed within their quest. Packed with exploits and action, this is a fast paced read (listen) that is difficult to put down (turn off).
The writing is even and well-balanced, implementing multiple elements that play on varying emotions with incredible ease. Stacy Bennett ensures that the readers establishes an early connection with characters and maintains that throughout. Her writing feels comfortable and natural, but not without the necessary punch.
Initially, I experienced some concern in terms of audio narration. It felt strange to place Zachary Johnson’s narration with our main protagonist Cara. But he won me over after a few chapters. I soon realized he has a special knack for story telling. He lent an air of enthusiasm and emotion that managed to carry Quest of the Dreamwalker with great proficiency.
The final result was a high fantasy story that examines life and self discovery in a very gratifying fashion, offering endless entertainment along the way. I cannot recommend this enough to anyone who enjoys character driven titles or fantasy.
*I would like to thank the publisher and Audiobook Jukebox for this copy. The above review is my own, honest and unbiased opinion.
Enjoyed over several cups of black tea spiced with cinnamon, sugar and nutmeg.