Book Review: The Infernal Lands

reviewcover-the infernal landsTitle: The Infernal Lands [The Aionach Saga 1]

Author: J.C. Staudt

Genre: Post-Apocalyptic Western, Science Fiction

Rating: 3 Stars

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Description/Synopsis:

Across the heat-blasted wastelands of a post-apocalyptic world, ages of high technology lay in ruin. Mutants and madmen roam vast derelict cities while nomads and monsters haunt the edges of a brutal wilderness. Armies rise up to war over what yesterday left behind.

But something larger than war is brewing beneath the Aionach. The inhabitants of this lawless realm are beginning to unearth mysteries from a forgotten age. Mysteries that may reveal the true nature of their dying world and unlock its darkest secrets.

WARNING – SPOILERS MAY ENSUE BEYOND THIS POINT – REVIEW BELOW

The Infernal Lands by J.C. Staudt was a little hard for me to get into, and I think that will ring true for a few people out there. There’s a distinct style to the narrative voice which is both colorful, engaging, and full of atmosphere, but you have to really enjoy that sort of heavily stylized type of writing to sink into it and forget the world around you. Personally speaking, it isn’t the kind of writing that I gravitate towards, but I can appreciate the art of it. It was well-written.

I had a bit of a tough time identifying with the characters, both because of how fantastical their world was, but also because of how often the narrative switched between them. In the first couple of chapters, the point of view kept changing, and I had a hard time figuring out who the main character of the story was, or even if I liked them.

All that aside, the book was very well written, the narrative style was gorgeous – I just don’t know if it was for me. If you like classic westerns and detailed science fiction sagas, I think you’ll really like this book for the atmosphere. But if you’re like me and tend to gravitate more towards character-driven stories, you might have trouble with this one.