Ah, here it is. There’s this thing with writing that says the author should mention the name of the book within the stories themselves. We found the first instance of this happening here. Now, grant it, I’ve done that in each of my books up to now. The only caveat is when I combined the four main books into my omnibus The Kavordian Library. I never mentioned it in that compilation. That’s because I was going to mention it in The Feather on My Scale, which I’m working on, I hear you in the back yelling about my slow production rate, yes, I’ll get to it. Lay off, I’m in the midst of dealing with a bunch of grumpy merpeople in Melancholic Harmony!
Oh. *ehem* right. Back to The Moss Baron. Now we’re finally approaching the name of this road that everyone seems to find themselves connected to. All roads lead to Rome sort of vibes, huh?
Long low flat landscapes and having to go find firewood. I have to wonder. I used to live in a desert. Now I live in a forest. I remember sedge and tumble being easy kindling. This terrain for this story though, what type of barren waste is it? Low heather? Maybe that would be an easy firewood. It’s an odd issue I find in any writing where people have open campfires and they have to go find firewood. Forests can be difficult to find dry wood in. The rot sets in and smolders the site. Grasslands risk setting the grass alight, or not being able to find enough burnable to keep a fire through the night. Something for other writers to keep tucked in their cap.
Venison and hare. That’s quite a bit of meat for two people to work through. Poachers though, so it is what it is. No one ever claimed humans had the capacity to not waste what the earth provides. To move an entire carcass of deer, gut it, drain it, butcher it, for that matter to do the same with the hare, that’s quite a project to get into for a pair of travelers.
I love when green dye garments come up in historical fantasy text. It makes me curious as to what the sourcing was for the color and the fixative used on the cloth to make it stay. My familiarity with the arrangement has to deal with the deadly history of arsenic. Red for vampires is an interesting color choice. One made to reflect the blood they consume, but green would be a much better choice. They wouldn’t die from the arsenic. That or brown for the iron in the oxidizing blood. I digress. This has to do with a poor farmer in a green tunic, neither arsenic or vampires.
Allow me to have a moment here to sigh and point out that in each story, the use of the word clearly pops up for representing an image that is to be taken at face value. I’m being judgement here, but that one is getting to me a bit. I shouldn’t complain. I have speech patterns in my own writing that most likely drive people crazy reading my work. *Shrug*, to each their own I guess.
The concept of the moss baron and the emperor’s territory. It’s an interesting dilemma. Reminds me of mobs and yakuza in media. When the government no longer protects the people, the people learn to protect the people, until they get just a bit too loud and the government takes notice before everything crumbles.
This time around, the story reads more like the Witcher, which is an interesting change of pace. Maybe it’s the magic. Maybe it’s the horse.
So, this isn’t the end of the book, but I think you get the gist of the storytelling method if you’ve been following along.
There are liberties taken with character interaction that lead more to the depth of the author than the authenticity of the situation. I like that about indie books. Some interactions would have been ironed out and scrubbed from the script if it had been put through a traditional publisher. The voice though would have been lost. It’s a fast read. A bit of gloom from the environment. Little morsels and tidbits here and there for you to glean the encompassment of a story. Isn’t this how history tends to be presented to us though? In bits and pieces?
There are autobiographies, true. Even then, those types of histories are presented in cultivated increments. In parts.
The congruence of stories within The Shield Road lacks complete depth due to its purposeful structure. This is one of those incremental situations. One where the whole picture is face value. Toes flicking through the creek in early spring before the snow melt. Before the deluge. Before an epic unfolds.
Read it. But be prepared to have cliff hanger complex.
I am a writer and artist working through the Kavordian Library series. I write sci-fi, fantasy, lgbt romance.