Captives by Barbara Galler-Smith And Josh Langston. Book review

Captives by Barbara Galler-Smith And Josh Langston. Edge Publishing (2011) $14.95

Reviewed by Craig Knight

Captives is a tale of betrayal, hardship and vengeance. Set in the days of the Roman Empire, the story portrays the lives of two druids as they face threats both from within their own ranks and from the oppression of the Romans.

Captives requires a little perseverance. The story opens with a barrage of characters introduced in such rapid succession it’s difficult to keep up. The narrative itself suffers from a similar problem as events happen so quickly and with such little attention, it threatens to destroy the believability of the plot. Have a little patience, however and the story finds its feet. As soon as the story adopts its style of two alternating plot strands, everything takes off. The first strand portrays the plight of Master Druid Mallec and the second the suffering of enslaved Driad Rhonwen. These two plot strands are ultimately united at the book’s mid-point in a very satisfying and unexpected way. There’s a lot to deal with in the second half but it is done so well, there’s not a chance to lose interest.

The story has its mix of villains, from the devious Driad Deidre to the much more effective Roman slaver Scotus. Easily stealing the scene for most brutal character, Scotus is sadistic and cruel, creating a fitting antagonist to the main characters.

Captives can be forgiven its initial stumble as it delivers a rich and atmospheric story with well-written and distinct characters. Stick with it, it’s definitely worth it.

Captives by Barbara Galler-Smith And Josh Langston. Edge Publishing (2011) $14.95

Reviewed by Craig Knight

Captives is a tale of betrayal, hardship and vengeance. Set in the days of the Roman Empire, the story portrays the lives of two druids as they face threats both from within their own ranks and from the oppression of the Romans.

Captives requires a little perseverance. The story opens with a barrage of characters introduced in such rapid succession it’s difficult to keep up. The narrative itself suffers from a similar problem as events happen so quickly and with such little attention, it threatens to destroy the believability of the plot. Have a little patience, however and the story finds its feet. As soon as the story adopts its style of two alternating plot strands, everything takes off. The first strand portrays the plight of Master Druid Mallec and the second the suffering of enslaved Driad Rhonwen. These two plot strands are ultimately united at the book’s mid-point in a very satisfying and unexpected way. There’s a lot to deal with in the second half but it is done so well, there’s not a chance to lose interest.

The story has its mix of villains, from the devious Driad Deidre to the much more effective Roman slaver Scotus. Easily stealing the scene for most brutal character, Scotus is sadistic and cruel, creating a fitting antagonist to the main characters.

Captives can be forgiven its initial stumble as it delivers a rich and atmospheric story with well-written and distinct characters. Stick with it, it’s definitely worth it.