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  • Writer's pictureTabitha Tomala

The Alchemist: Dark Horizon by L.A. Wasielewski Book Review

Book cover for The Alchemist: Dark Horizon by L.A. Wasielewski
The Alchemist: Dark Horizon by L.A. Wasielewski

The Alchemist: Dark Horizon Book Review

Ryris goes through such a powerful transformation in The Alchemist: Dark Horizon. After the events of the first book, he is broken in both body and mind. The reader’s heart will go out to Ryris as he doubts all his actions and self-worth. He sees himself as merely an alchemist who cannot save the ones he loves. To him, it’s no wonder he failed. He is no warrior. But through the help of his remaining friends and new companions, Ryris will discover there is more he can offer. While he may not be ready to battle on the front lines, he has abilities beyond anything he could have imagined. And he is only on the cusp of discovering his true potential.

As Ryris undergoes his growth and transition, the story moves back and forth between Ryris’s group and the necromancers. While this builds up a great amount of tension and anticipation of when the two sides will clash, there were moments throughout the book where chapters opened on action sequences. While being dropped straight into a dramatic scene can certainly hook a reader there needed to be a bit more build-up towards them. Given multiple characters were telling the story, maybe a few hints were dropped through dialogue from another character’s viewpoint, or some other use of general foreshadowing to prompt the reader. But that being said, L.A. Wasielewski knows exactly how to write gripping and emotional scenes.

Each time the necromancers launched an attack it was brutal. Lyrax’s absolute disregard for humanity and the lives of those he encountered was disturbing. And Roann’s slow descent into following his teacher’s desire for power above all else was gut-wrenching. No matter the costs, both necromancers would do anything in their power to bend people to their will. And at times it cost Ryris and his friends dearly, ensuring the reader would be along for an emotional experience.

The Alchemist: Dark Horizon certainly lives up to its title as Ryris and his companions are drawn into a darker fantasy tale rife with heartbreak and sacrifice. Ryris's character development blossoms throughout this novel and is sure to continue in the next. I can’t wait to see the new ways alchemy and magic will be forged to fight against the encroaching evil.

To Purchase: Amazon

All or part of this book review may be used in marketing, I only ask that you reference Behind the Pages if you choose to do so.


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