I received a copy of this book from Ravenswood Publishing in exchange for an honest review.
This is my first one ever! It’s exciting! The book grabbed my attention because it has been compared to Edgar Rice Burroughs. The concept of the story is much like his Land that Time Forgot Trilogy which I loved. So I had high hopes for this story.
Eye of the Storm
by Fran Cavallo
Dr. Anna Fayne, an anthropologist, Eric Slade, a former Navy SEAL, along with nineteen others embark on a research mission to learn more about a mysterious plane accident. The odd thing was that one of the bodies found was a recently deceased Neanderthal.
When they arrive on site, they are caught in a strange storm with black flames and pulled through a rift in time and space to a planet populated with Neanderthals, a reptilian species, and undead. It is a fantastic world with dinosaurs, magic, wizards, and ritual sacrifice.
Slade and Fayne lose their team to the brutal life in this new land. They are enslaved by the reptilian race and sold for a Mayan type ritual sacrifice. The difference is that instead of throwing the heartless bodies to a pit, they throw it to a dragon. YES this book has a dragon! I love dragons! They become entangled in a war over the succession to the throne of a kingdom. Fayne learns that a magical object called The Eye of the Storm, holds key to returning them home. Thus begins the quest to get home.
There was so much happening in this book: dinosaurs, battle for the throne, Neanderthals, an undead army, a reptilian race, dragons, pterodactyls, priests, wizards, plus some I don’t want to mention and spoil the story. It skimmed the surface of all these. I felt overwhelmed by all that was going on. I think this author has tons of great ideas, but didn’t pare them down and keep only the ones critical to the story.
I feel like there were missed opportunities to add depth to the characters by putting in their thoughts. The main characters wanted to get home of course, but other than for modern conveniences, I don’t know why. They felt very one dimensional to me.
Who will like this book?
If you like The Land that Time forgot, you may enjoy this book. If you like tons of action, tons of fantastic world building, and political maneuvering, you might like it.
I usually like character stories, which is why I want to know more about what’s going on in their head. This is not a character story though. This is a Milieu story; it is all about this amazing world. The setting, the groups of people, the plot are what this story is about. (For more information about the MICE Quotient see this post.)
I would not classify this as YA since the protagonists are 37 and 43 years old. This story has strong language. The vocabulary is moderately sophisticated. There is a lot of world building and political things to juggle. There are also frequent POV shifts. Because it is written in 3rd person omniscient, there is even head hopping within a scene, which can be confusing for younger readers. I think someone in 11th grade could comfortably read this.
Foul Language: Yes
Sexual Content: some
Substance Abuse: No
Over all rating: PG 15