The pandemic changed the way we see things now. We have become educated and have seen injustice all over the world. However, sometimes the feeling can be overwhelming and can leave us too stressed and anxious all the time. So, what better way to mitigate that feeling? It is to pick up a book and escape to another world unseen before. With this new fantasy book, Dean Matthews shows the world a refuge in fantasy and fiction.
Released in 2021, The Dark Taal by Dean Matthews is set back a thousand years ago when gods were scrambling to find balance and harmony in the war-ravaged realm of Aymara. Thus, they created two powerful stones that could bring the realm into order: the Firebrand stone born of darkness and the Chimera stone, the one born of light. These stones brought peace to the land and ensured that all races could have equal access to its power. Years passed, and the races advanced with greed prevailing once more. It seems, though, that the unchecked power of the Firebrand stone has caused much of this instability, and many seek the shards scattered all over the land. As the threat of war becomes imminent, an innocent boy named Aridain is brought into the world. A champion of the gods, his task is to seek and destroy the stones. The question remains: will he be able to succeed amongst all odds?
Author Dean Matthews, born in 1961 in Oxford, England, has always been drawn to story writing. He began pursuing his aspirations for writing when, at eight years old, their English teacher had read The Hobbit to them over a succession of days. This sparked his interest in literature and arming himself with knowledge by reading prominent high fantasy authors such as Terry Brooks, Stephen Donaldson, and David Eddings. Through this, he developed his own way of world-building, creating a new world full of magic, monstrous creatures, and of course, a hero rising out of a ravaged world.
Perhaps, what’s more, interesting about The Dark Taal is the way it starts like any other fantasy book but uniquely takes an unexpected turn, showing Matthew’s craft in full exposure. Readers will be able to see graphic imagery through narrative and experience a rollercoaster of emotions as the book takes them on a whole other level of amazement. The character-building starts slow but picks up its pace to help readers get the feel of a world wrecked by war. The thrilling yet unmatched energy in this book will immerse the readers into a different world, providing an escape during these unsettling times.
There is no doubt that even with such a common theme, Matthews is able to twist it around and offer a new daunting perspective. One that would plunge the readers into the world of high fantasy, introducing them to an adventure of a lifetime. With that in mind, readers should look forward to this series as The Dark Taal is only the first of The Foundation Stone series by Dean Matthews.