30 November 2011

Corus the Champion - Dean "D. Barkley" Briggs


He was once the greatest champion in the land.

Then he disappeared.

With Nemesia's defeat, the Barlows have helped turn the tide in the Hidden Lands. But the victory is short-lived. An even greater evil stirs in the north with a fierce new army bent on destruction. As the twins, Gabe and Garret, discover their own special powers, a thin thread of hope emerges: long ago, a fabled king was rescued from death on our world and hidden on Karac Tor. Who is he?

Each brother has their part to play. Hadyn must travel north to warn the land barons, which leaves Ewan with a bitter choice. Will he sacrifice what is most precious to discover whether Corus lives? Even more important, if Corus is alive, can he wake the Sleeping King of legend...before it's too late?


This series of books blends Arthurian legend with the author's incredible imagination.  Mr. Briggs writes confidently and with a masters touch - he is rather talented and he weaves a dense tale full of magic, deception and mysteries galore.   This book is second in what will be a series of five. Unfortunately, for me I haven't had the pleasure of reading book one.  So for the first few chapters or so I felt rather confused.  Now, usually I prefer that when reading a series of books that the author not spend an inordinate amount of time retelling and retelling what happened in previous books.  Too much backstory is tedious and interrupts the flow.   However, zero backstory leaves the reader on her own.  That would be my only caveat...read Book of Names first.  Please.  Otherwise, this is an immense saga spanning great distances and between great lengths of time and Mr. Briggs tells this story with a strong and lyrical voice. 

On a side note there is a very interesting story about this book.  At one point near the end of the book there is one rather odd sentence.  Now, it turns out that during the editing of the book there happened to be a gale storm of apparently epic proportions.  Mr. Editor presumably headed for higher ground and in the midst of such chaos there happened a weird little cut and paste accident.  Mr. Briggs explains it here and I suggest that you read his account of how it happened as I am told that I tend to mix up my facts from time to time.  Now I only want to know...What does Poplar Springs Baptist Church still need?!?! 


Dean "D. Barkley" Briggs is an author, father of eight, and waaay too prone to twisting his ankle whenever he attempts a pick-up basketball game in his old age. He grew up reading J.R.R. Tolkien, C.S. Lews, Patricia McKillip, Guy Gavriel Kay, Stephen R. Donaldson, Ursila K. Leguin, Susan Cooper, Madeline L'Engle, Terry Brooks, Andre Norton and Lloyd Alexander (just to name a few).
In the aftermath of losing his wife of 16 years, Dean decided to create a heroic journey that his four sons could relate to. Thus was born a new and paradoxical genre: semi-autobiographical fantasy, as Dean actively weaves elements of his life and family into the plots of his stories.
"The Legends of Karac Tor" tells the edgy, sweeping tale of four brothers who get stranded on another world. Together, they must find their courage, battle overwhelming odds, face their pain, and never quit searching for home. Five books total are planned.

* I received an advance copy from the publisher for purposes of review. I was in no way obligated to write a review much less a favorable one. The opinions stated herein are all my own.


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