Sunday, July 29, 2012

Review of Red Leaves and the Living Token by Benjamin Burrell

Doctors tell Raj that his son Emret won't survive his illness. As Raj struggles to prepare himself and Emret for the inevitable, he's confronted by Moslin, his son's nurse, who’s been filling Emret’s head with fairytales about heroic quests and powerful disease curing miracles. Emret now thinks that all he has to do is find the mythical Red Tree from the nurse's stories, and he'll live.

In an attempt to protect his son from further emotional damage, Raj asks Moslin to stay away from Emret. He returns hours later to find them both missing.

He searches the fairytales for clues to where they may have gone and stumbles upon stories that, strangely, he already knows. He saw them in a vision just before his son disappeared.

4 stars

One quick note before I get into the meat of my review, I received an early edition of this book before it had been seen by a professional editor (I have since received an edited copy but don't have time to reread the book in it's entirety).  As such I will be reviewing on characters, story, etc, ignoring any of the editing issues I saw within.

Red Leaves was originally written as a screenplay with the goal of a CG production in mind.  The cover shows off the skill that the characters can be rendered in and if it ever happens I will be eager to see it.  The story follows the journey of a young man, who is terminally ill, seeking a cure for his condition. When his nurse takes him to find the mythical Red for a cure without his father's permission a journey with far reaching consequences is begun.

The characters were interesting, but an index would have been helpful at the beginning.  I had trouble keeping the races straight at first, having to flip to the beginning to keep things straight.  Honestly that is not an uncommon experience for me when starting a new series with original species.  I really liked the young boy's father and his dedication to finding his son, the abilities he develops are also fantastic.

The whole story following the Token and the temple that can be reached using it has a ton of potential.  The only issue is the sudden stop at the end of this book.  There is obviously more to come, but there was very little resolution for the book.  I really am not a fan of cliffhanger endings so that was a bit of a negative for me, but not something that deducts from the story overall.  I believe the second book should be out soon and hopefully it will continue to keep the strength of the story going.

For more info or to purchase the book check out Amazon, Smashwords, or the author's website.

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  1. As my blog is part of the blog tour, I take it for granted to visit all other tour stops.

    Thank you for an honest review. Cliffhanger are always something to discuss but in the end it is a question of your taste.

    1. I agree that cliffhangers are totally open to interpretation. I always state when I find them just in case people like me don't like them or would rather wait until the rest of the series is available before starting something.

  2. a great review! sounds like a good book :)

  3. Nice review! The cover is really beautiful. Sounds like it might make a nice M. Night Shamaylan movie!

  4. I have never seen a CG movie. (If that means the character generator things lol)

    This sounds like a good story. :)