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Reviewed by Natalie Soine for Readers' Favorite
Soraya: A Wielders Of Arantha Prequel by Patrick Hodges begins in Agrus on planet Elystran and tells the story of Sahria. Sahria was born into a small farming community in Hayn but became an orphan when her family succumbed to the plague, so she joined the Sisters of Arantha’s Light. Sahria wakes up in a cave with other women, all tied and blindfolded. She befriends Kithya, Giara, and Norna. Vic and Stesh (from Vanda) are their captors who plan to sell the twenty women as slaves at the Warlord’s market. During their trip, Thawn joins them and brings with him the fabled Agrusian Stone which has magical powers. Sahria, Giara and Kithya discover that they have new talents that they did not possess before the stone arrived. The women pray and seek guidance from Sahria when they all realize that their faith in Arantha will guide and protect them if their captors do not destroy them first.
What an incredibly exciting story. Patrick Hodges has quite an imagination coming up with such a variety of characters, scenes, and locations. The women travel in wagons from caves to a desert and finally utopia. I especially enjoyed the way Sahria, Kithya, Giara, and Norna combine their skills and knowledge to try to survive a horrific ordeal while helping their fellow victims to stay alive. The story is smooth flowing, thrilling, and filled with suspense from beginning to end. The creative names of the people, places, and animals make the story unusual and interesting. Soraya: A Wielders Of Arantha Prequel is a thoroughly enjoyable read, highly recommended for adults.