A Hero Born

by Michael A. Stackpole

Published by Harper Collins (US) 
U.S. 5.99
420 Pages
ISBN 0-06-105680-4


This is a fantasy novel, the first book in the Realms of Chaos series. This is a new world, created by Stackpole, to provide a backdrop for his series.

Set in a world divided into two areas, the Empire and Chaos. The area of Chaos warps reality to produce a land of horrors and wonders. The land of the Empire is separated from Chaos by a magical barrier, called the Ward Walls, which allows the people of the Empire to live normal lives. Chaos was created when a group of wizards created the Seal of Reality and were tricked into destroying it, by a wizard who then becomes of ruler of Chaos, Lord Disaster.

The main character is a young man called Locke, the son of the Empires great hero Cardew, who died in Chaos while Locke was a child. Young Locke has won the honor, in a contest against his two older brothers, to follow in his fathers footsteps and accompany his grandmother to the Emperor's celebrations.

The plot involves a a steady pace, and I liked the way the main character comes to understand the world as the reader does. The plot involves some fascinating characters and some unexpected turns that keep the story interesting. I will be very interested to see how this series develops in the next books, in the Realms of Chaos series.

Overall this was a excellent beginning to the promising series. 8 out of 10.

P.F. 23rd January 1998

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© Paul Farris 1998