The Crosser’s Maze and The Greatwood Portal
Author: Dorian Hart Genre: Adult Fantasy Publisher: Self-Published
**Special thanks to the author the gifted copies**
It’s been a while since I’ve written a review, so you get a bonus double review in this post (also, it’s been a while since I’ve finished these and have been behind on getting reviews written, so this review is more general likes and dislikes between both books instead of more specific praise and critiques, since I didn’t get to write these reviews as soon as I usually do; thanks, mind-numbing peak period during my day job!).
- The characters. Like I mentioned with the first book, I love how distinct each of the characters is and their character growth has been impressive, to say the least! It’s been a joy to see that growth as they are faced with challenge after challenge; see the group dynamic shift and strengthen, especially as we get introduced to new characters. Definitely the strongest bit of this series, I think!
- The intentionality of the plot: That sounds confusing, but there are a lot of different threads going on in this quest to stop an ancient evil from escaping and destroying the world, so it sets up an expectation that these threads are going to be acted upon and come together and they do, which you just love to see. You can definitely see the care put into this plot!
- Use of POV: What was a weakness in the first book for me actually became a strength in the latter two books, as quests began to be tied to certain characters, getting them more screen time than others. This kind of structure requires some patience, if you have a favorite character (and I bet you will!) who might not have as much “POV page time” as you want, but I think it’s handled really well.
- A certain romance: I’m so here for it!!
- Beginning of The Greatwood Portal. It took me a little bit to get into the beginning of the third book, because it felt like the first third was less action-focus and more waiting for things they’ve done already (or have been warned about approaching) to come to fruition. However, once things started happening, I read through the rest of the book in one sitting, so…🤷♀️
- The constant waiting: Something that has frustrated me a bit with the series is how much the wizards continually make our characters wait for information or have to be vague. I completely understand why this happens (hell, our characters are also frustrated, so it’s not like I’m alone or this isn’t acknowledged), but it did become a little frustrating by the third book. This could also be because I read all three books back-to-back.
- Another certain death (and sorta death of another character?): How dare you.
I continue to enjoy this series and am very thankful I don’t have to wait to read the fourth book, since I have the pleasure to work on it! The following is the rating for both books: