Review: "The Laws of Magic (Ruzniel, #1)" by Daniel Nanavati

— feeling confused
The Laws of Magic - Jennika Bastian, Daniel Nanavati

Winte  "Zaqui is coming." I think this statement perfectly describes the main idea, the "root" of all the events that build the storyline of this novel, the event towards all the events and characters converge to. The atmosphere in this novel from the first until the last page is tense; you can feel the fear of the characters and the imminent approach of the danger, death...of the Zanqui, which means the End of the planets, life and the Universe. With only three days remained until all disappears, until life seize to exist the characters are making great preparations and gather their forces for the ultimate battle between the Good and the Evil, a battle which has been awaited since time immemorial. The Good forces, Sangyma and other powerful magicians, united their powers to defeat, when the time comes, the evil army, led by the most evil mischievous malevolent powerful omnipotent villain of all the almighty Crilo...Chrio...Crilodach. (As you can see I have a problem with getting Its name right, well actually I had a hard time figuring out how to read and remember the majority of the names from this novel, because most of the names of the characters and places are really tangled, but hey that's not really a minus for the book itself but it's just a little detail that bothered me… so just keep in mind not to ask me which is the name of the character I like or hate, because I will most likely pronounced it wrong or won't remember...


What are my feelings after reading Ruzniel? One word: confused. I neither love nor hate it. There are some parts I liked and others that, sadly, I didn’t enjoy so much. So here are the minuses and pluses of this novel, from my point of view:


What I didn’t like:


1.Too much information:


The beginning was really confusing, there is a HUGE amount of information pouring like a waterfall over the reader and drowning him. Pages and pages full of details about the universe's history, its future, many different planets, civilizations, philosophies, specific characters, like Sangyma and magic and its laws, so I had the impression that I was reading a history textbook, but don't get me wrong, I didn't say that what I found out wasn't interesting, there were some good ideas and the author created a very complex and magical world, but the way it was presented, all at once was too much for me to accumulate the amount of information was overwhelming and there was just too much there at the one time. Generally, I liked the plot and it kept me entertained, but at times I think scenes dragged out for far too long and I just found myself quickly losing interest and zoning out, sometimes I couldn't focus on the story… so it lost me several times. And sadly, there were times I got bored and just wanted to finish the book already…


2.The characters’ construction:


I usually like a story more when it has characters with whom I can empathize, to grow fond of, to identify with. I expected to “meet” complex characters but instead I came across flat characters which seemed to have just one personality trait: good or evil, nothing in between. All the characters were either perfectly good or perfectly bad, all were extremely powerful and wise, all were so perfect, so unrealistic, so because of that it was impossible to become attached to them, and I mean: ”come on!” nobody is perfectly good or perfectly evil, I hated it.


What I liked:


1.The cover is really nice, I admit that it is what attracted me at first to find out more about this book and there are also some beautiful illustrations of the characters, scattered through the book, which aid in visual understanding.


2.The world building:


It’s visible that the author put a lot of work in creating the world, there are lots of detailed descriptions of the characters, places, phenomena, and everything is so vivid.


3.Unique writing style:


I think the authors writing style is really unique, it seems different, in a good way. I don’t know why but sometimes I had the impression that I was listening to an old wiseman telling a long forgotten tale. The narrator makes this book to have a mysterious aura.


The book has a sequel, so the ending of this volume is a cliffhanger. I’m still curious which will be the outcome of the great battle between Good and Evil and how will be depicted the End of the Universe and what characters will survive until the end, so if I have the chance I would totally like to read the second book.


Overall, it is a good book, but it depends on who reads it, if one enjoys it or not. It has a great plot, philosophical ideas scattered here and there, a lot of magic, a great number of unique characters, a complex and fantastic world building. So if you have the patience to get through the first 50 pages, which are full with tones of information which can make you a little bored and if you are interested in magic and fantasy books, then I think that you can give it a chance.