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Reviewed by Sefina Hawke for Readers' Favorite
Ascension (Book 1 of Age of Shadow Saga) by Marc R. Micciola is an epic fantasy book that would appeal most to a diverse audience made up of a mix of mature young adults and adults who enjoy fantasy stories that feature numerous mystical races and who do not mind explicit language and graphic violence. Long ago, all the different races in Midstad worked together to imprison a dangerous enemy known as Kemryr, but two hundred years later most regard Kemryr as a myth or legend. This belief is questioned when the peace is violently disrupted by a cult, known as Black Light, and one of their assassins shouted the name 'Kemryr' during the attack. Now it is up to the King of Hestferd and his son Einar to determine the truth and save Midstad.
Ascension by Marc R. Micciola is a well-written fantasy with an eye-catching cover image. The description and cover caught my attention right from the start, but it was the characters that kept me pushing forward, page after page, to learn the fate of Midstad and Einar. The book reminded me of the Lord of the Rings series with the author’s beautiful world-building and the different races, yet while there were some similarities, this book is original. I liked that the story was not just a fantasy adventure, but also a mystery as I longed to discover the truth about Kemryr, alongside the King of Hestferd and his son Einar. I loved this story and I hope to get the chance to read the second of the series in the future!