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Reviewed by Vincent Dublado for Readers' Favorite
Sarah: And So It Begins... is G.S. Renfrey’s offering in a fantasy series about a young enchantress who is destined for greater things. Sarah often imagines herself as a soldier after hearing one of her Uncle Marcus’s tales of adventure in the King’s Guard. She sometimes found herself lost in her thoughts, a heroine warrior who saves people from dangerous warlords and horrid beasts. Her imagination may well find solid ground in reality as she grows up and develops the special abilities necessary to fulfill her destiny. Some know about her gifts, her dreams, and visions, and Sarah is learning the connections between dreams and reality in a way that threatens her and those who are dear to her. The narrative is divided into three parts that begin by introducing Sarah in her formative years. The second part is where her ability is challenged to save a friend. The third is where she defends her own life against malevolent forces.
G.S Renfrey manages to inject such an impressive level of sophistication into the fantasy genre that Sarah: And So It Begins... may well be judged in time as worthy of becoming a classic. He may write about the world of Serenia and Isalan, but the storyline is just as much about our world and his characters are just as much about you and me. Sarah’s tale operates on the time-tested formula of The Quest, where, in the process of developing her powers, also places her on a journey of self-discovery. However, the enchanted setting of the novel provides a good bridge between fantasy and reality - enough for readers to feel immersed in the world-building and characters while getting a good grasp of the social issues.