Monday, April 27, 2015

Review: The Temple of Doubt by Anne Boles Levy

Title: The Temple of Doubt
Author: Anne Boles Levy
Publisher: Sky Pony Press
Release Date: August 4, 2015

Set on a unique and magical planet called Kuldor, The Temple of Doubt tells the story of a young girl who pits her doubts against her faith.

It's been two six-days since a falling star crashed into the marshes beyond Port Sapphire, putting the wilds off-limits to fifteen-year-old Hadara, a loss she feels deeply. She's eager to join her mother beyond the city limits to gather illegal herbs and throw off the yoke of her tedious religious schooling. Medicines of any sort are heresy to the people of Port Sapphire, who must rely on magic provided by the god, Nihil, for aid. And if people die from that magic, their own lack of faith is surely to blame. At least, that's what Hadara’s been taught—and has so far refused to believe.

Hadara and her mother have ignored the priests’ many warnings about their herb gathering, secure in knowing their tropical island is far from Nihil’s critical gaze. Then two powerful high priests arrive from Nihil’s home city to investigate the fallen star, insisting it harbors an unseen demon. This sets off speculation that an evil force is already at work in Port Sapphire and brings one of the holy men to Hadara’s doorstep. When he chooses Hadara as a guide into the wilds, she sets off a chain of events that will upend everything she’s been taught about the sacred and the profane.

The Temple of Doubt is the first installment in a series that follows a teenager who is given a greater destiny and purpose than she could’ve ever imagined.

As a whole, the concept of this book was interesting.  I like the thought of a rebel against religious fanaticism.  But the entire society was annoying.  They were completely puritanical, and it made reading about certain things almost painful.

Things that were awesome about this book
The Gek creatures.  I mean come on. Lizard people?  That's pretty cool.  The magic that was used was also pretty neat.  The overall plot was interesting too.

Things not so awesome about this book
The world as a whole.  I didn't like the way the puritanical people acted about everything.  I also wanted to punch Amaniel in the face multiple times, but I have a feeling that was the point.  One other thing that annoyed me was Hadara's little crush on Valeo.  She thinks she's all grown up and in love, but the girl has no idea what love is.

The end kind of fell flat as far as cliff-hangers go.  But at least I was still asking at the end, "Was it a star? A demon?  Maybe another god?"  What was it that fell from the sky?

Like I said, I didn't love it.  But the plot kept it interesting enough for an enjoyable read.  Recommended to those who like more fantasy-like dystopians.

Note: Received eARC from Edelweiss for an honest review.

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