Friday, December 28, 2012

The 5 Moons of Tiiana: By Paul T. Harry

The 5 Moons of Tiiana (The Chronicles of Rez Cantor, #1)Review by Jacey

After saving the Princess of Melela from certain death at the hands of the alien hybrid Relcor, then getting her off planet, Captain Rez Cantor is in a quandary. Instead of reaching a safe haven as planned, the unthinkable happens, and the results leave him injured and alone on an alien moon with no recollection of how he got there. To make matters worse, his life is in danger. There is a strange alien cloud hovering over him with the intention of devouring him. 

Welcome to the 5 moons of Tiiana–five moons unlike any other in the galaxy.

This story is an epic narration on Rez’s quest as he searches for the answers to the mysteries surrounding Tiiana and her 5 moons. But first, he will need to survive and adapt, second, locate the princess, and third, save the races of Tiiana from annihilation. 

The journey begins on Urlena, a water-covered moon populated by the Aquella. A race forced to live underwater because Giragoc, the cloud God rules the sky.

Next comes, Boutal–a medieval moon divided between three races, the human-looking Motula, the ape-wolf Solula, and the flying gargoyles known as the Brata.

Aura is a dead moon ruled by robots, the only surviving remnants of the first moon war.

Zin is a moon peopled by the Zecla–a warrior race of locust who breed uncontrollably every 2000 years crushing and devouring everything in their path.

And lastly, there is Vashia, the cool blue moon ruled by the Visi–a race of ghosts who hold the key to everything.
Intrigued by this wondrous array of moons and beings? Perhaps then you’d like to join Rez on his quest. The journey begins on page one . . 

I'll begin my review by saying this is one of the most well-written pieces I've had the pleasure to discover and read. The author, Harry, succeeded in immediately drawing me into this epic with his excellence in writing. The landscapes are beautifully illustrated, so amazingly that I could almost picture myself strolling through the ruined city on Urlena or in a marketplace in Casita. The way Harry has crafted his epic is gorgeous, the environments desirable and also delightfully frightening.
There were several issues that I felt needed to be noted as I read this. Though the language is eloquent, I found some of the characters' descriptions to be either silly, wavering, or just not ones that I could empathize with. One clear example of this would be in the book's beginning, in Rez's interactions with Penta, the whore he finds to replace the princess. At first, you think she's secretly a bad-ass independent woman struggling in a scummy part of the universe, hating what she does but doing it because society has imposed it on her. The fact that she's enslaved made me root for her to begin with. However, not very long after you meet her, she turns into a ditz who won't shut up. On top of that, Rez, who's supposed to be a calm and collected general goes a bit overboard and smacks her and calls her names. Though Harry says she whines, we don't actually get to get a peek into what is making her annoying. Thus, this all just makes the main protagonist look like a jerk. Then, when on Urlena, he busts his two buddies' heads together, the only ones that were actually nice to him, to escape the mines. THEN, even though the King of the Motula says they themselves had been responsible for countless deaths of the Brata, Rex is ready to "kill them all" for the sake of his companion's Oolat's desire for vengeance. Additionally, I felt that the direction of the novel was lost in pursuit for action sequence, which though well written, just felt distracting. 
In addition to these, I thought that there could have been less "When suddenlys" or "Unexepctedlys." I felt that Harry could have substituted these with another description, knowing how well he writes the rest of the novel. 
All in all, this book does pack one exciting punch. It has adventure, action, violence, the works, so if you're in the mood for an insane romp, this is for you.  I think that if Harry had put this in third person though, it could have been better. Perhaps if he had written it that way, he could have put more detail and background into Rex, giving him him reasoning behind his actions, such as mistreating a whore or being somewhat savage when meeting one's ends, and thus make him a more empathetic character. Honestly, I think if you can't make the reader feel empathy for the main character, there can't really be a story that he or she will want to follow. No one wants to know how a jerk rose or fell.

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