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Forging Silver into Stars by Brigid Kemmerer

Brigid Kemmerer certainly made a name for herself with her wonderful Cursebreaker Series. The first book in that series was one of the best fantasy introductions to a series that can be read. It had everything, and the action never seemed to let up, making the reader continue (sometimes despite best efforts to take a break!). However, anyone who also read books two and three will know that magic only struck the once in that series. The two subsequent books failed to live up to its wonderful beginnings.

In Forging Silver into Stars, Kemmerer has used the Cursebreaker series as a starting point and created a spin off narrative where magic is banished and yet still stills palpably beneath the surface of the society. One need not have read the Cursebreaker Series to enjoy this book, but it does help to explain the world.

It has been four years since we last saw these characters from the original series. Two regions, Emberfall and Shyl Shallow are in a position to promote unity between them and magic has no place in this new order. Taken from multiple perspectives of narrators Callyn, Jax, and Tycho, each of whom have interesting takes on the expectations of the world around them.

Some characters are recognisable from the first series, and in some ways that background knowledge is helpful, but not completely necessary for newbies to the writing of Kemmerer. Many of the latest character creations are much more three dimensional to some of those previously constructed and speak to the growth of the writer in her own ability to forge her own little stars.

In Forging Silver into Stars, the trials of loyalty, friendship and romance are pushed to the limit as the ‘Truthbringers’ cause more chaos and controversy to the world. It will remind you of all the wonderful elements that Kemmerer brought to Cursebreakers and then some.

The narrative is fast paced and draws you into this alternate reality. Like the first of the Cursebreaker series, there is a real feeling of ‘must-read-one-more-chapter’ to it. Above all, it is the inability to guess the next step or the next outcome that keeps you coming back for more - and more.

One interesting and modern factor was the queer and disability component to the novel, a real sense of sensititvity towards queer and disability rights and the investigation of both in a really worthwhile and heartfelt way. It definitely added an extra layer of dimension that served to add to the narrative realism.

In this spinoff series, once again the reader finds themselves completely immersed in this world of imagination from Kemmerer. As one who enjoyed the Cursebreaker book 1, there is an anticipatory, but still a little anxious wait for the next edition in the series.

Reviewer: Chris Reed



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