The Finding

<p>Ariah, from the moment of her transformation to Unicorn, is given a mission to find and stop the evil that has covered her valley in darkness.&nbsp; Leaving the only home she knows, she bands with an elf maiden Dariel, a leopard, a grumpy wolf and even the young man Tarran for a journey of discovery seeking the Light of Savron that can stand up against the darkness.&nbsp; As they seek, her horn changes color until in battle it turns crystal revealing her to be the Light of Savron.&nbsp; Yet it is in the love of Dariel and Tarran that the true light is made complete.&nbsp; While the world holds back the evil hordes, Ariah brings her precious friends before the darkness and returns the world to the light of love.</p>

Genre

Epic Fantasy

Critic Evaluation

Cover Design Score: 6

As a book about a unicorn, the cover design is appropriate,but it would be a more effective representation of the story if the cover art incuded a few of the other characters from book as well.  Perhaps even one of the major scenes in the book could be incorporated to make it more interesting at first glance to the reader.  Although people say 'don't judge a book by it's cover' , your cover art is always your 'first impression' . Make it as interesting as possible.

Book Blurb Score: 6

The book blurb seems to follow along with the storys intention.  It does contain some typos: "<p> " appears at the beginning and the end, and "&nbsp" appears ahead of every semi-colon.

Formatting Score: 3

There are a few problems with Formatting.  The "FrontMatter" of the book begins with 'other books by this author' .  These two books, "Shadows Within Dark Places" and "Seven Stars of Midnight" each have the identical book blurb of the other.  As they are titled differently, I assume they are different stories,so the book blurbs should be different.

Next the manuscript has both a "Short Synopsis" and a "Long Synopsis".  These belong more in a 'Book Proposal" than in a finished manuscript that is ready for publication.  They can be incorporated into the books final blurb.

The Table of Contents is populated incorrectly.  There are no Chapter numbers listed with the Chapter Headings.  Page numbers are all incorrect.  They all read as #9.  Each Chapter Title page number should read as the page number it appears on in the book.

Body of Book: The chapters arent numbered where thier Section Headings are placed,and are a different font and color than the body of the book.  The SubHeads of these 'Sections" make the manuscript read like it is a "Book Outline".  These 'outline SubHeads' should be removed when the final manuscript is written.  There is a small typo on page 42, 'mussel' should be spelled 'muscle'.  The SubHead "The Final Pathway" has been used twice in different parts of the book, in different sections of the outline.  There are double-spaced lines between every paragraph of the book.  Those lines should not be there, the paragraphs should come together.

Grammar & Spelling Score: 7

Grammar and Spelling are fair in this manuscript.

Plot & Structure Score: 4

The plot of this book is fair, but the structure needs some work.  It's easy to lose one's place when reading it.  There are more than a few battle scenes and it seems to bog down in those somewhat. The storyline suffers a little in it's 'flow' from that ,when it needs to keep moving.

Character Development Score: 5

The Character Development (for the main characters) is fair.  There are alot of secondary characters that come across as vague , even toward the end of the book.  For example: Burrbels wicked brother is a villian through most of the book and then at the end it's uncertain if he is or not,it's a little vague there.

Originality Score: 3

There are some originality concerns with this book.  Although there can be many books written about unicorns, magical creatures and the like while still maintaining thier originality, this one comes across feeling a bit like a combination of other stories.  For instance: Section SubHead "Rescue of Besimell" is very reminiscent of scenes in "The Last Unicorn" by Peter S Beagle, where the unicorn is rescued by the wizard,from the cage in Mommy Fortunas' traveling show.  There are places throughout the book that read very like The Lion Witch and Wardrobe-The Chronicles of Narnia- by C.S. Lewis  and The Lord of the Rings-by J.R.R. Tolkein all rolled together.  The names of the characters (especially the elves) are very close to the character names in The Lord of the Rings.  The name of your Wolf, "Furor", (a main character in the book)is very close to "Fenrir" -a wolf in the Viking Norse Sagas, or "Fenris-Ulf"-a wolf in The Lion,Witch and Wardrobe.  Not to mention the fact it is off-putting to many readers since it carries negative conotations as being a name once used in reference to Adolph Hitler.  This isn't good because your development of that character in this book keeps him in the main character group, rather than as a villain,so you want to give h im a name that suits his 'positive' place in the story.

Pacing Score: 5

The pacing of this story needs a little bit of work.  It begins well enough and then a third of the way the pace picks up as it builds to an event(in this case a wedding).  Then the pace seems to slow again until picking  up near the next event, (another wedding).  The last third of the book the pace stays the same interspersed with battle scenes along the way.  It could perhaps be improved by saving some of the big events (especially celebratory ones -like weddings) for the end of the book, after any battles or wars are won.  This gives the reader a feeling of the story having been completed to the fullest,with the best end result.

Use of Language Score: 6

Use of Language is fair.  Communication doesn't seem to be a problem in this manuscript.  Character conversations and dialogue are fair (if a bit formally spoken and flowery).  Meanings are clear enough.

Overall Readability Score: 4

The overall readability of this book is medium.  It's a little hard to get into at first and occasionally through the book the story loses it's ability to carry thorugh.  I think this could be corrected by re-arranging a few events and making the plot come together more fluidly toward it's end.

This book received a critic's score of 49 out of 100 possible points.

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