Daryl Chestney (2010)
Reviewed by Marty Shaw for Reader Views (6/11)
I was amazed by the detail that went into the creation of Dominion’s world, feeling like I could enter this realm and experience it for myself. From the intricate descriptions of the Goblin Knight Inn to the in-depth legends that provide insight for young Lakif, the world within Chestney’s book is an intricate creation.
Lakif, a member of the Acaanan race, is a likable main character, although she seems an unlikely choice to play the hero, which actually makes me like her even more. During her search for a warrior that can aid her in her quest, we learn that she isn’t exactly on friendly terms with the concept of work and she has a hard time keeping her impatience and temper in check. Why would someone that prefers an easy life take on a mission to find an ancient artifact? That answer makes Lakif even more intriguing because the Rare Earth Stone can apparently bestow great power upon its wielder. While the young Acaanan entertains fantasies of using this power to help people, I see a lot of potential for her to slip into the bad guy role because she has no true concept of power, and her idea of helping people is equally as vague.
The warrior who joins Lakif’s quest is also a mystery that’s fun to try and unravel. Torkoth belongs to the race of Half-Men. This particular race can have qualities so diverse that one person may look like a man with cat whiskers while another looks like a wolf that walks on two legs. Torkoth seems to be the living embodiment of the term Half-Man because one side of his body appears to be human while the other half is covered in green scales. His past is a mystery to everyone, including himself, although there’s some evidence that he might actually know more than he lets on.
While Lakif and Torkoth are the main characters, the city of Grimpkin introduces us to a few other characters that seem equally intriguing, and I hope that we get to see more of them in the sequel, “Commandment.” The ones that seem especially interesting to me are the Sidhe known as Ku-Than and Jonas, a Human with the hobby of collecting runes. Both are entertaining in their own way and I would love to find out more about them.
The level of action within the story might be a little slow for some readers’ tastes, with most of the physical activity taking place towards the end, but the intricate storyline and colorful characters in “Dominion” kept me entertained so much that I really didn’t notice the lack of action during the first half of the book. I’m looking forward to reading the next book in Lakif and Torkoth’s adventure, with hopes of learning even more about these characters and the world they live in.