This YA fantasy debut anthologizes three novellas in which heroes search for treasure to help stop an evil sorceress.
Young Tobias lives in the cozy town of Summers Glen. One day, after escaping from some bullies, he encounters a strange old man who invites him to hear a tale about Lynquest the Great. “But those stories are just fairy tales,” Tobias argues, before he settles in to listen. So begins Search for Greatness, the first of three adventures detailing the life of Lynquest, a hero who starts out as a 12-year-old tanner’s son named Tiny. After the youngster removes a sword from a dragon’s hide, he and the creature become friends for life. Afterward, Tiny decides to test his manhood by traveling to the city of Salizar. His perilous undertakings soon raise his esteem in the eyes of Ironcrest Castle’s royalty. During these years, Tiny learns about a sacred scepter and four enchanted rings that are capable of uniting mankind. Every thousand years, however, a wicked sorceress named Salina attempts to gain control of the scepter and, through it, the world. Secret of the Child and Tale of Two Faces follow Lynquest and his friends as they fight to protect mankind. These magnificently imagined tales within tales show that debut author Hess knows and passionately loves classical fantasy. Tolkien himself might have been proud to have written these lines: “There is strength out here in the silence of nature. Here, a man’s thoughts can grow strong and tall like trees and his spirit is at peace.” The adventures are dense with mythic characters—such as Subakai the dragon and Queen Emily of the Eternal Rose—who accomplish equally mythic feats. In a thrilling sequence reminiscent of the 1967 film The Jungle Book, Lynquest and his boy companion, Sebastian, face enormous snakes known as Malice and Avarice. But for all the swashbuckling, Hess’ overall theme of hope remains paramount, for it is “[l]ike moonbeams on the surface of the water, so easily broken by a ripple but always returning.”
Poetic fantasy tales that will mesmerize readers of any age.