#BookReview: The Summoned Ones ( Book#1 Flight to Bericea) by Darryl A. Woods

My rating: 3.75 of 5 stars 
Book Blurb: The Bericean army was in Malabrim for the ninth straight fighting season. Over the past 9 years, Zybaro, the leader of a small band of unknowns, had evolved from his days as a minor usurper of a tiny kingdom. Now, almost the entire country of Malabrim was under Zybaro’s control. Still, Bericea continued its raids into Malabrim, hoping to stem Zybaro’s methodical progress and thwart his tyrannical means of control. 

This latest conflict with Zybaro had pushed General Darnon to a decision, one he had resisted making for over a year. Though he still held grave reservations about the Prophecies, he was willing to support the clerics who would attempt the summoning. The details of the ritual had recently been discovered in an ancient tome. The clerics were confident they could bring forth the Summoned Ones of Prophecy, those mysterious beings who would aid Bericea in its time of greatest need. Join the soldiers of Bericea and the Summoned Ones through a life-or-death struggle. 

The Summoned Ones was made up of a small college aged group of friends from a small Kentucky town near the Daniel Boone National Forrest, who find themselves somehow brought to a chaotic world through magic. Their epic journey will push the Summoned beyond the limits of their endurance. This unlikely group will discover many truths about themselves and experience another world beyond their imagination.

Review: The story starts on the battle ground introducing the reader to General Darnon and his most trusted soldier Kali fighting the enemy as they await for reinforcements. It was a good action scene to set the pace of the story and I already felt good about this book. 

Next, the author introduced "the summoned ones" - group of old friends who have spent every summer together since the age of 12 and together are closer to each other than anyone else. Within shared stories of their past and present banter, the author manages to set the character for each one of them different from each other. I was impressed by the fact that, that by the time this group is summoned to the world of magic and chaos, I could easily separate the names & behavior of each of them. Once summoned , the friends are divided into three groups - by a combination of chance and choice equally and they begin the journey from the heart of the enemy area to the safe lands of the neighbor country. Protecting and leading the way for the summoned ones are the best of scouts , soldiers, general and the magic wielding clerics who are usually not liked much in this world because of some old conflicts. 

Part 1 of the story is mostly the journey , growth and adaptation of the friends into the new world , with new people. Although their capabilities seem to have come to them overnight , it had already been established that some of their talent was evident in their world too. Like the best warrior , though a basketball player, he is as skilled in martial arts. Or the healer is studying to be a nurse and is good with horses because of her family being involved in the same business. 

The terrain and the people in the story are all uniquely described so they paint amazing visuals at times in the mind of the reader. I found the magic system quite unique as to be associated with music - singing or playing some instrument and channeling your thought into action. It was interesting and a little sad too, because fear of magic kept people away from singing or enjoying music freely. But the best part of the book for me were some of the battle scenes and the sparing scene between Kali & one of the summoned one was FANTASTIC. I love the author's attention to such details and creativity to rope in multiple skills & jobs , people , stories and geographical challenges in this quest. The book manages to grab attention with all the action taking place around.

Though one does understand the bigger picture of the conflict and the differences in the army size & need for the summoned ones in the war, I also wanted a little more about this world , the two nations and the people fighting for Bericea. I hope more of this is covered in the next part of the story and we have more growth and heroic moments for all our favorite warriors along with more details  on the political conflicts. 

I am looking forward to the next part of this story eagerly.

About Darryl A. Woods:
Darryl Woods is a storyteller who hones his craft entertaining coworkers. He also enjoys regaling family and friends with stories of his upbringing in rural Ohio, of the motorized contraptions his father fabricated, and of the timber cutting and sawmill work he did with his father-in-law. With an appetite for reading fantasy, it was inevitable he would choose to write about an epic journey in a world dominated by magic and sword fighting.

Purchase Links: 
Amazon US: https://amzn.to/31HTPbr 
Amazon UK: https://amzn.to/2Z1mLsY 
Barnes & Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-summoned-ones-darryl-woods/1133667482  

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