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Reviewed by Grant Leishman for Readers' Favorite
Jeremy Austin and Miervaldis is the continuing epic fantasy/science fiction story from author Rod C. Spence. Jeremy Austin and his group of teenage, high-school compatriots have traveled through a wormhole to the planet Genesis 2.4 million light-years away from Earth. They are following in the footsteps of their parents and searching for them, all scientists at a cutting-edge research facility, who entered the wormhole a year earlier and failed to return. When they reach Genesis, they find a world rooted in the Middle Ages, with old-fashioned technology and weapons but with magic and some incredibly evil and powerful creatures. Not only must they find their parents, but they must also stay alive in the face of Shadow Lords, Gnome Kings and others bent on world domination and their destruction. When Jeremy discovers he is considered to be the legendary Paladin, predicted to save the planet from evil and free the oppressed, the whole journey takes on a new, exciting and dangerous twist. Knowing their time is limited and that the portal to the wormhole is soon to close, Jeremy and his fellow travelers are engaged in a desperate race against time to find their parents and get back to earth before time runs out on them.
Jeremy Austin and Miervaldis may be a part of a continuing saga but don’t worry if you haven’t read the series in order. Author Rod C. Spence does an exceptional job of introducing all the key characters and their roles in the saga to date. Once you start reading this story, which is a stand-alone adventure, you are ready and raring to go with all the characters fully in your mind. This truly is an epic fantasy/sci-fi tale and you will be transported right into the center of what seems like “Middle Earth” on steroids, with nanotechnology and magic that will blow the reader’s mind. The characters are well-drawn and fully fleshed out in the story. For me, the standout character was Marissa, the outsider and loner at high school who not only discovers the magic she now possesses on Genesis, but more importantly discovers she actually has the confidence and courage to go along with the moxie she has always displayed. Her relationship with Jeremy, as each of them explores their feelings, was suspenseful and inherently teenage-like, which is, of course, what these young people really were. The drama and suspense were beautifully woven together by fast-paced and extremely believable action sequences and battle scenes that had me riveted and continuously turning pages. This is no short read but it is so compelling that the length was a plus and not a negative. I thoroughly enjoyed this adventure and look forward to the next iteration of this series. A book I can highly recommend.