Friday, November 19, 2010
Furies of Calderon - Jim Butcher
The series takes place in the world of Carna, or more specifically in the realm of Alera, which is an empire very similar to Rome. In this empire, the citizens are able to bond with elemental spirits, known as "furies", and are able to use those spirits to perform beyond their human abilities. Spirits of fire, water, wind, earth, wood, and metal can all be bonded with, and each grants unique characteristics. In this world we find the story of a young man named Tavi, who is unable to bond with any element. He is considered a freak to his people, and a social outcast. Tavi becomes aware of a sinister plot to overthrow the government, and possible destroy everything he knows and loves. Having no power and no social standing, he must defy the odds and try to save the kingdom before it is utterly destroyed.
While I doubt that "The Codex Alera" will ever stand up to the true masterpieces of fantasy literature, I still recommend it. It is well written, and Butcher does a great job of drawing the reader into the lives of his characters. Each character's story is interesting, and wants to be fully explored. While Butcher's "Dresden Files" series is much more adult in content, "The Codex Alera" does a great job of appealing to all audiences. There are a few swear words and romantic scenes, but Butcher does a good job of keeping them PG rated and avoiding the details like many other authors seem unable to do. The story is complex enough for adults, but it is written in a way that even younger readers could enjoy. If you are looking for a well written fantasy series that delivers an interesting story, intense action, and a little bit of romance, then this is a great series to put on your reading list.