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The Reaper of Iremia
Kenneth Rocher. Kenneth Rocher, $0.99 e-book (292p) ASIN B07TXR23TH
Rocher’s promising but uneven fantasy debut introduces the intricate city-state of Iremia. Close friends Calian and Reneia study at together at Iremia’s Military Academy. But unbeknownst to Reneia, Calian leads a double life as the wanted vigilante Actaeon, slaying criminal offenders unrestrained by the strict military rules of the academy. When an Actaeon impostor begins slaughtering innocent civilians, Calian makes a desperate attempt to stop him and save lives. While following a trail of clues that lead to the mastermind behind the imposter’s killings, he discovers an assassination plot against Reneia’s father, Duke Eldrian. But when the duke is attacked, Reneia vows vengeance—against the wrong vigilante. Rocher’s world is dense with magic, mystery, and secrets, but he leans heavily on exposition. His excessive use of deus ex machina stifles the tension, and though the premise is fun, the story feels rushed. Seasoned fantasy readers will find plenty to enjoy in Rocher’s set-up, as long as they’re willing to ignore the flaws in execution. (Self-published)

Reviewed by Publishers Weekly on 01/15/2021

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