Thursday 4 July 2013


Flesh And Spirit by Carol Berg
Book 1 of the Lighthouse Duet

Genre: epic fantasy

About Flesh And Spirit:
In a land torn apart by civil war, pestilence, and shaky alliances, a man branded a traitor ends up in a place he never expected...

The rebellious son of a long line of pureblood cartographers and diviners, Valen has spent most of his life trying to escape what society - and his family - have ordained for him. His own mother has predicted that he will meet his doom in water, blood, and ice. Her divination seems fulfilled when a comrade abandons Valen in a rainy wilderness half-dead, addicted to an enchantment that converts pain to pleasure, and possessing only a stolen book of maps.

Offered sanctuary in a nearby monastery, Valen discovers that his book - rumored to lead men into the realm of angels - gains him entry into a world of secret societies, doomsayers, monks, princes, and madmen, all seeking to unlock the mystery of a coming dark age. To his dismay, Valen must face what he fled so long ago, for the key to Navronne's doom is buried in half-forgotten myth and the secrets of his own past...
Source: Info in the About Flesh And Spirit was taken from the author's website at on 20/03/2011.

Breath And Bone by Carol Berg
Book 2 of the Lighthouse Duet

Genre: epic fantasy

About Breath And Bone:
Osriel the Bastard wagged his finger, choking off my response as if a noose tightened about my neck. "But you, Magnus Valentia de Cartamandua-Celestine...what does Sila Diaglou want with you?"

Not just the murderous Harrower priestess, but everyone in Navronne seems to be after Valen. There is the Bastard Prince himself, who steals dead men's eyes. And the Pureblood Registry, determined to keep every pureblood sorcerer in thrall. Even beings out of myth, the Danae guardians, whose dancing nurtures the earth and whose attention could prove the most costly of all.

As Navronne sinks deeper into civil war and perilous winter, Valen finds himself a bargaining chip in a deadly standoff. Doomed to madness by his addiction to the doulon, and bound by oaths he refuses to abandon, the young sorcerer risks body and soul to rescue one child, seek justice for another, and bring the ailing land its righteous king. Yet no one is who they seem, and Valen's search for healing grace leads him from Harrower dungeons to the very heart of the world. In the twilight of a legend, he at last discovers the hard truth of the coming dark age and the glorious, terrible price of the land's redemption...and his own.
Source: Info in the About Breath And Bone was taken from the author's website at on 26/03/2011.

These books ought to be read as one. Because really these books are just one big story chopped up into two volumes. If one reads Breath And Bone without reading Flesh And Spirit first, then the reader is losing out on the wonderful experience of the whole story! Breath And Bone is not meant to be read on it's own. And what a reading experience it is indeed! Not only because I am obviously an old Carol Berg fan, but because this doulogy is a real keeper! The world building is beautiful and intricate. But then again it is woven by a master story spinner! And of course being a master story spinner, the story telling quality is very compelling! Such that even with the two volumes this doulogy felt short!! Yes, it is fast-paced. Having said that, Flesh And Spirit is not as fast-paced as Breath And Bone though. But then again I don't think any book would ever be as fast as Breath And Bone. That one flew through! And that is the only down side to these books, that after Breath And Bone there is no more books in this series to read. The ending of this doulogy was very satisfying indeed! But at the same time I was left with the craving for more and there aren't any more. Sure there are a few nitpicking issues in these books but I happily overlook all of them for the wonderful reading time these books delivered! But best of all is the character development. Carol Berg gives us characters that not only connects with the reader but someone who elicits deep emotional response. Fictional or not. The image of kissing woodland elves with this post does not really represent Thokki and Kol but then again I cannot really post them naked with only their gard markings or well get reported.

Empirical Evaluation:
Story telling quality = 5
Character development = 5
Story itself = 5
Ending = 6
World building = 5
Cover art = 4
Pace = 5

Overall Rating: 5 out of 5 cherries


Dust And Light: A Sanctuary Novel by Carol Berg
Book 1 of The Sanctuary Duet
Genre: epic fantasy
Publication Date: August 5th 2014 by Roc Trade

About Dust And Light: A Sanctuary Novel:
National bestselling author Carol Berg returns to the world of her award-winning Flesh And Spirit and Breath And Bone with an all-new tale of magic, mystery, and corruption....

How much must one pay for an hour of youthful folly? The Pureblood Registry accused Lucian de Remeni-Masson of unseemly involvement with ordinaries,” which meant only that he spoke with a young woman not of his own kind, allowed her to see his face unmasked, worked a bit of magic for her.... After that one mistake, Lucian’s grandsire excised half his magic and savage Harrowers massacred his family. Now the Registry has contracted his art to a common coroner. His extraordinary gift for portraiture is restricted to dead ordinaries — beggars or starvelings hauled from the streets.

But sketching the truth of dead men’s souls brings unforeseen consequences. Sensations not his own. Truths he cannot possibly know and dares not believe. The coroner calls him a cheat and says he is trying to weasel out of a humiliating contract. The Registry will call him mad — and mad sorcerers are very dangerous....
Source: Info in the About Dust And Light: A Sanctuary Novel was taken from GoodReads at on 08/11/2013.

Update(s): 8 Nov 2013 - Dust And Light: A Sanctuary Novel info added.
17 Nov 2013 - Added the cover art for Dust And Light: A Sanctuary Novel.
24 Dec 2014 - Corrected the series name of Dust And Light book.

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