The Summoner (Chronicles of the Necromancer, #1) by Gail Z. Martin

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It’s hard to find anything to say about these books. They are pretty much a cookie cutter fantasy story from start to finish. I read a lot of fantasy, it is my go to genre alongside Sci-fi, and I feel like I’ve seen everything in this book a hundred times but better.

Martris Drake is a young prince living in a made-up land. One day his life is turned upside down when his family is attacked and only him and his (very obviously evil) brother Jared survive. Jared has aligned himself with a very powerful (also evil) mage and has taken over the kingdom. Tris runs for it accompanied by his closest friends in an attempt to travel to another kingdom for help. Adventures with bad guys and a pretty typical “coming-of-age” story ensues complete with “romance” and “excitement”.

Ok, so maybe it isn’t *that* bad, however i never felt challenged by the writing or story either. Everything went exactly the way I thought it would at every opportunity. Tris barely knows how to use his power and is constantly unsure of himself and fears what the others must think of his, however he is pretty unstoppable and awesome at it every time he tries. There isn’t any point in the story where there is true tension because you (the reader) knows he will be just fine.

There is all the usual cliched characters along as well. The jolly best friend/bard; the gruff Master of Arms; the rogue,Vahanian, who is secretly tortured by his past and has a heart of gold. The ladies are pretty dire as well. The Healer, Carina,is “spunky” and fights with the rogue (hey, I wonder if they will fall in love later?), and the Feisty Princess, Kiara, who is fighting for her country and is also super good at fighting and swordplay.

This is getting long but it was seriously depressing to me how cookie-cutter all the plots and characters were getting. I make jokes but I would like my characters to have a bit of life to them and be less two dimensional. The romance elements are laughable as well. It is all very eye-rollingly insipid. Tris and Kiara fall “in love” faster then it takes to make tea. He sees her fighting off monsters, she notices he is pretty handsome and isn’t totally sexiest about her sword fighting skills MUST BE TRUE LOVE.

This book really disappointed me. I liked the setting and her world-building is fine but everything else was so thinly characterized and cliche i could barely stand it. I read until the end because I promised the friend who recommended them to me I’d read them, but I can tell I’m in for a long slog through blandness.

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