In the walled city of Sundrian, a young boy’s fate rests on the back of a temperamental elephant named Missy – who’s borderline personality could lead to freedom…or to war!
Following the mysterious death of his parents, Linus decides to drown his sorrows by drinking himself into oblivion and with this dose of Dutch courage, climbs into the palace gardens. Sentenced for trespassing, Linus has to survive the attentions of an elephant and rider intent on killing him for five minutes to earn his freedom. The alternative – dismemberment by a trained War Elephant - is not a pretty thought! Through some uncanny miracle, he not only survives, but is enlisted into the service of the palace as an elephant rider himself.
Thus begins a grueling training regime under the loathing and watchful eye of Commander Deimos who is determined to make Linus’ life a living hell. He does this by giving Linus the most temperamental elephant possible, a small male nicknamed Missy who is near impossible to control, let alone maneuver.
Meanwhile, the folk of Sundrian City are kept in thrall by the word of their emperor (who seems to talk an awful lot without saying very much) and head magician Lord Remiel. Remiel makes regular expeditions which take him beyond the city’s walls to survey the frightful and dangerous landscape surrounding them that justifies their staying put within the confines of the city walls.
But the people of Sundrian have been spreading rumours- whispers about an entirely different world outside than the nameless horrors the commoners have been lead to fear – rumours that are gaining momentum swept along on the back of rebel activities.
Linus finds himself teetering at the precipice between order and chaos – no matter what he chooses his world will never be the same.
If ignorance were bliss, would you seek truth?
This debut novel by Ander Louis is a fast-paced action-packed fantasy that will keep you reading until the wee hours of the morning! I feel it has more appeal to younger/teen readers but will be an easy read for any older fantasy enthusiasts.
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