KP Book Review: The Light of Eidon

By Karen Hancock

For eight years Abramm has trained and disciplined himself in order to devote his life to being a priest of Eidon. All thats left before beginning his service is to touch Eidons Sacred Flame and feel His presence.the_light_of_eidon

When Abramm touches the flame, instead of feeling the awe and devotion he expected, he feels dread and isolation. Even after everything hes done, he still isnt good enough to serve Eidon. And when he foolishly listens to his heretic brother, a string of unfortunate choices quickly leads to him being betrayed by a mentor and sold into slavery as a gladiator among infidels in the southern lands.

Where was Eidon when Abramm needed him? And why couldnt he ever be good enough for Him?

The Light of Eidon is a solid piece of Christian fantasy, which is perhaps somewhat of a rarity these days. I confess that I dont care for most published Christian fantasy works. Although I like a couple authors, I think that a lot of Christian fantasy tends to have poor storytelling and poor thematic elements. Also, since the cover of this book is a bit cheesy, I worried that the content might be too.

But any concerns I had about this book were causeless. While the book might not make it into my top ten favorites, it was a legitimately sound piece of Christian fantasy, which earns high marks from me. Abramms faith struggle felt very realistic and natural to his character, and Hancock developed it beautifully and without much cliché. The Christianity analogue likewise suited Abramms world and was a natural extension of how people in such a culture would worship God.

The story was enticing and compelling, the characters were interesting and flawed, and some good plot twists were thrown in. The world-building got a little confusing at times, but I could still follow the story.

Overall, this book is good Christian writing and good fantasy writing. In my opinion, thats rare to find these days, and this is probably my favorite work of Christian fantasy that Ive read in the past three years. I wholeheartedly recommend that you check it out.

Discussion Questions:

Hancock develops the Christianity analogue in such a way that a fair amount of culture surrounds it. Christianity can look different from culture to culture, and this should be present in a fantasy analogue of Christianity. How does the Christianity analogue in this book differ from Western Christianity? If youre writing a fantasy novel, how could you follow similar tactics for your own story?

Examine Abramms conversion. How does Hancock avoid cliché as she describes his conversion, and what makes it so compelling? Did his conversion seem realistic? Why or why not?

Content Advisory: [spoiler] At one point in the story, there’s a scene where Abramm chooses to sleep with a female character. The act is depicted as wrong and the scene “fades out’ before anything happens, but the story spends some time delving into his (unsuccessful) struggle against temptation. Younger readers may prefer to avoid this scene.

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Josiah DeGraaf started reading when he was four, started writing fiction when he was six and hasn’t stopped doing either ever since. After growing up with seven younger siblings, he eventually found himself graduated and attending Patrick Henry College, where he plans on majoring in literature with a minor in pedagogy (it’s a fancy Greek word for education).
Someday, Josiah hopes to write fantasy novels that have worlds as imaginative as Brandon Sanderson’s, characters as complex as Orson Scott Card’s, character arcs as dynamic as Jane Austen’s, themes as deep as Fyodor Dostoyevsky’s, and stories as fun as Wayne Thomas Batson’s. Plans for obtaining those impossible goals include listening to a lot of Hans Zimmer, ignoring college work so that he can find time to write, and avoiding coffee at all costs.
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Comments

  1. Great review!

  2. I read this a few months ago. I like how it actually leaves you in doubt as to what the truth is for a while. It was kind of disconcerting, but powerful. In so much Christian fantasy you know who´s right and wrong and who God is even if the characters don´t . So when they do discover the truth, it´s less powerful to the reader.

    • Good point! I hadn’t thought of that, but I think that definitely helped the story. Introducing the Christian-analogue as a ‘heresy’ and slowly allowing the reader to realize that it was actually the true religion was definitely a good choice.

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