Reviews

Monday, 01 October 2012 17:56

Five Dances with Death: Dance One [Kindle Edition] by Austin Briggs Featured

Written by
Rate this item
(0 votes)
Five Dances with Death: Dance One [Kindle Edition]
By Austin Briggs

Format: Kindle Edition
File Size: 726 KB
Print Length: 242 pages
Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
Publisher: Helvetic House (July 25, 2011)
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services
Language: English
ASIN: B005EJGYJ8
Website: http://www.austinbriggs.com/

If you’re a fan of historical novels, are interested in the Aztecs, and would like to try something different, you’ll enjoy Five Dances with Death: Dance One by Austing Briggs.

Written in first person from the point of view of Angry Wasp, the story begins in 1516, during the era of the Spanish Conquest in Mexico. Angry Wasp, military leader of Tlaxcala, wants to keep his nation safe and search for his lost daughter, Dew, whom he’d lost to one of the leaders of an enemy tribe, a man named Talon. Though Wasp has now captured Talon, the man won’t reveal the whereabouts of Dew. The war with this enemy tribe, the Moonwalk People, is now a personal matter, though Wasp doesn’t want to make this evident to his people.

One of Wasp’s wives, a sorcerer well-educated in the magic arts, teaches him to have out-of-body experiences – that is, to travel in soul and spirit while his body stays in the safety of his village. It is in this “tricky” state, which is hard to fully control, that Wasp makes a twin of himself and meets with Stern Lord, the most powerful man in the world and ruler of the Moonwalk People. Stern Lord is aware that Talon is being kept prisoner by Wasp and isn’t happy about it. Thus begins Wasp’s dance with death as he tries to stay alive and discover what happened to his daughter.

Magic, history, sorcery, mysticism, spirituality, fantasy, and magical realism combine to create an original, intriguing story that will capture your imagination. Briggs writes with attention to detail, making his world come alive. I enjoyed the dialogue and descriptions and especially seeing the world from Wasp’s perspective. My only problem with the story is that in the beginning the issue of finding the daughter seems important but later on it sorts of falls to second place. This didn’t stop me from reading but it did get my attention.

Since the book is self-published, I was also surprised by the quality of the writing: excellent and free of typos or grammatical mistakes. I really appreciate when a self-published book is so well copyedited. In addition, the story seems very well researched and I found interesting all the cultural information, especially the segments on sorcery and sacrifice rituals. Briggs has been researching the Aztec Empire for over 10 years and his knowledge comes through in the writing, without hitting the reader over the head or slowing down the pace with information dumps. In sum, this is a novel worth reading and I recommend it if you’re particularly interested in Aztec history and culture.

Reviewed by Mayra Calvani (www.MayraCalvani.com)
December 2011

Read 634 times Last modified on Thursday, 11 November 2021 20:18

Comments powered by CComment

Latest Posts

  • The Creative Industry Needs to Look at Things Differently Post Budget 2022
    On 29 October 2021, the Finance Minister, Datuk Seri Tengku Zafrul Tengku Abdul Aziz tabled Budget 2022 in the Malaysian parliament. RM50 million has been allocated for the arts and culture industry. This comes after a year and a half after the entire industry came to an absolute standstill. With…
  • ‘The Covid Positives’ – life lessons learnt from the pandemic by Phanindra Ivatury
    After a long drawn battle with the biggest catastrophe in our living memory, global humanity is finally getting to see some quintessential ray of light at the end of the treacherous tunnel in the form of COVID-19 vaccines, currently being rolled out to all parts of the globe. A ‘COVID-19…
  • Chaos of Whole Books
    Is it possible to read several books at once? Aneeta Sundararaj finds out. When I was a child, my cousin used to boast that he could read four storybooks at a time. As an adult, when he invested in an e-Reader, he continued to boast that he could…
  • Writing for You? Or for Me?
    Writing for You? Or for Me? ‘You must always write with your reader in mind.’ This was one of the first pieces of advice that I received when I began my writing career. Honestly, I found this extremely hard to do because more often than not, I couldn’t picture my…
  • One Book That Changed My Writing Life
    My latest novel, The Age of Smiling Secrets was shortlisted for two categories in the Book Award 2020 organised by the National Library of Malaysia. When I reflected on the journey that this book has taken, I acknowledged the enormous influence of one of my all-time favourite books, Joseph Anton:…