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White Mountain by Sophie E. Tallis

White Mountain (edition 2012)

by Sophie E. Tallis

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149683,257 (3.5)3
Title:White Mountain
Authors:Sophie E. Tallis
Info:Safkhet Fantasy (2012), Epub ,359 pages
Collections:Recommendations ONLY, Ebooks, Your library, Fantasy
Tags:!tal, @2013, ER, free, use, YA, fantasy, urban fantasy, hero doesn't die, dragons, magic, mental magic, demons, Quest Journey, Magic Trinket, underground cities, problems with scale, old age, don't bother with the sequels, ebook

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White Mountain (Darkling Chronicles) by Sophie E Tallis

adventure (2) alternate reality (1) book (1) contemporary (1) dark magic (1) demons (1) dragon (2) dragons (2) Early Reviewers (3) ebook (3) ecology (1) epic (2) ER (1) fantasy (5) fiction (2) high fantasy (1) loss (1) mage (1) magic (2) myth (1) old age (1) ROOT (1) sacrifice (1) series (1) survival (1) trilogy (1) urban fantasy (1) witchcraft (1) wizards (2) YA (1)



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Showing 1-5 of 9 (next | show all)
I have to say I really really loved this book, not just because it has a wonderful brave dragon in it and some amazing illustrations, but also because the story is gripping and exciting.
The story follows two friends Mr Agyk a wise old wizard and Gralen a large portly green dragon. They receive a message from a wizard friend of Mr. Agyk who appears to be in trouble and set out to help him. This is the start of an adventure that tests them to the limit and takes them to many far off corners of the world.
The descriptions paint vivid pictures, which draw you into the story and the story line keeps you wanting to read more and more. I thoroughly enjoyed this and can’t wait to get my hands on the next instalment. I would recommend White Mountain to anyone, a truly wonderful story. ( )
1 vote lindseyp2009 | May 9, 2013 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
I only read to around page one hundred. The world building was interesting and I didn't dislike any of the characters, but I had a hard time staying interested. I wasn't able to connect with any of the characters, but that could be because I'm the wrong audience (there didn't seem to be written for YA). I got the feeling that the dragon was supposed to funny, but I didn't find him such.

I also felt that it was too dramatic. The book was riddled with lines such as "a strange and deep foreboding fell upon the two once more, and though neither could explain their fears, they both felt reluctant to close their eyes." Even the chapter headings seemed designed to wrack up the tension and suspense. For example, one chapter was titled "A Stony Clearing in the Ancient Grey Forest, Danger Lucking in the Shadows." All and all, it felt like overkill. It didn't compel me to read farther, it just made me annoyed. If the writing was just toned down a little, it would be a much better book.

Another thing that bothered me was how things would be shown, not told. We don't learn about the characters from their speech or actions, but from long paragraphs introducing them and telling their character traits. In places, White Mountain seemed repetitive. For instance, fairly early on in the book the main wizard shrinks himself. From then one the adjective 'little' is constantly applied to him. I get that he's shrunken, I don't need the word 'little' to constantly remind me.

I can see other people liking White Mountain, but it just wasn't for me. ( )
  pwaites | Mar 13, 2013 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Sadly, I've been unable to finish White Mountain. I did read until about half way though. The writing is fine, the story is a bit simplistic though. I also found it hard to feel any connection with the characters so I didn't particularly care what happened to them. I'm not that fond of YA fantasy, so perhaps I'm being a bit hard on this book though. ( )
  majkia | Mar 4, 2013 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Review based on ARC.

In the end, it fell at three.
While I read this book, my feelings toward it changed often and dramatically. I felt that the beginning warranted closer to four stars, portions of the middle were great, portions were good, and portions were frustrating. And the end redeemed itself a little.

This book falls squarely in the "fantasy" camp. Three friends a/k/a companions find themselves on a Lord of the Rings -esque trek across a large version of our world (or else the dragon flies remarkably slow). Wizard Marval/Marvalla/M Agyk (a-hem) a/k/a the Green Wizard, dragon Gralen, and witch Wendya encounter incredibly extreme situation after incredibly extreme scenario, fighting for their lives at every turn, eventually leading to a fifty-or-so page "climactic" fight for the known universe. In between each of these incredibly extreme situations falls lengthy and involved descriptions of scenery with spatterings of "normal" conversation among(st) the friends.

The book includes "dworlls" (dwarfs), ellfrn (elves), dragons/draken (dragons/baby dragons), dwelf (cross-elves and dwarfs), wizards and witches, and various dark creatures/spirits/monsters such as dark mytes (demonic/spirit-like giant beetles), wargols (troll-like entities), and sauron..er, Morreck/m'Sorreck himself.

Right. That's one of the major issues I had with this book... not the various creatures. Like I said, I'm a fantasy-girl. The issue is that it felt like a regurgitated LOTR w/ some Harry Potter thrown in. Except with HP5-level immaturity and tantrums. M Agyk (I cringed every time I read it) was Gandalf (with some Dumbledore thrown in) .. except instead of being the "Grey" Wizard, he was Green. Wendya was the generic protagonist/Harry Potter (does not yet know (a) how strong she is or (b) about her twisted past). Gralen was Samwise/Ronald Weasley/Hagrid. Of course there are great differences, of course they are not actually the same characters.. but there were SO many times that I thought "uh-huh, LOTR" or "oh, there's HP!"

Additionally, M Agyk's thousand, Gralen's many hundreds, and even "young" Wendya's several hundred years on this planet have not stopped them from making amateur/adolescent mistakes. There were essentially tantrums, pouts, and clumsy dealings with the challenges, rather than the maturity and broad vision that would be expected from someone with at the least several hundred years of life on them. Indeed, the whole book might have been less frustrating to read if the three leads were in the late teens or early twenties. Just that -- and publishing as a YA -- would make the book seem "appropriate."

Nevertheless, there is promise with the author and the series. The descriptions, while long and sometimes gratuitous, DID bring the landscape to life and created a colorful and three-dimensional picture in my head. The loooong battle at the climax of the tale was surprisingly well done - moving between the different locations of the fighters somewhat effortlessly and mostly convincingly. Certain of the characters were even endearing and all of the characters were well-described, if not very well developed. It was easy to turn the page. I did want to know what happened next. I did tense up during the battle scenes.

Moreover, I felt that Tallis nailed the oracle scene and Agyk's first interaction with Morreck. Those scenes fall into "great." If she had limited the sheer number of life-threatening situations in one book to just a couple, if she had limited her descriptions (or, really, the need for such descriptions) to just a few (no need to cover the whole world in book 1 of a trilogy), if she had been just a little more realistic with the whole love-triangle bit (what works in a cartoon does not necessarily work in a novel), and if she had instead taken that space to develop the characters' characters (heh heh) a little more, I think the book could easily jump a star.

As is often the case w/ new fantasy writers, the second book may be leagues ahead of the 1st. I would recommend the book to YA-fantasy readers looking for something to bring back thoughts of HP and LOTR, and I would recommend to die-hard fantasy fans who aren't particular about polished writing. ( )
  avanders | Feb 25, 2013 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
White Mountain is a fantasy novel, reminding me of Tolkien with its mix of battles, adversity and mythical races. Set in a modern world (though hardly touched upon) at first I found the novel confusing. I am divided if I will read sequels, as though I am curious to see what happens, I found the book not the easiest to get through. The final battle I found too long and overall the book could have benefited from more editing. ( )
  Cfraser | Feb 3, 2013 |
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