Shades of Virtue


Fiction - Fantasy - General
Kindle Edition
Reviewed on 07/22/2014
Buy on Amazon

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    Book Review

Reviewed by Karen Pirnot for Readers' Favorite

Shades of Virtue by Jack Whitsel continues the Dragon Rising series started by Shadows of Kings. It is now two years later and forces of good and evil continue to battle for territories and the minds of humans. In the Hugue territory, a contest is to take place in which knights will compete for the hand of Lady Basina. It is hoped that the union of a champion knight and Lady Basina will unite the forces of good against those of the Order of the Secret Throne, a sect that promises treachery and death to all who work against its agenda. Unification of the forces of good will then establish the kingdom of Shylandia. The Council of Whispers has chosen Lady Lucia to monitor the championship tournament and she, in turn, has elected to use two of her new charges, Dragana and Tallya. The young apprentices are skilled in magic, but not especially skilled in controlling their magic.

Not having read the first book in the series, I was initially confused by the introduction of so many characters, armies and councils. However, Whitsel keeps up a fast pace for the reader such that the varying conflicting forces soon become known in both name and intention. I could have done without some of the graphic violence but, that said, it was all in keeping with the period of time and was a reality-based part of the story. I particularly liked the character of Marcel who seemed the most real and the most motivated of the knights. Once the story begins, it simply takes off and leads the reader on a fantastic journey of imagination!