Chaos Rising

The Erstallius Chronicles, Volume One

Fiction - Science Fiction
423 Pages
Reviewed on 03/12/2021
Buy on Amazon

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    Book Review

Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers' Favorite

Chaos Rising is a work of fiction in the science fiction, action, and adventure sub-genres and was penned by author P. D. Blackwell. The work is intended for the general reading audience, and it forms the first novel in The Erstallius Chronicles. Our protagonist is Bev Colli, a low-ranking person according to the social system on her homeworld, who finds herself the victim of misfortune after she is sent to work in a mine deep beneath the surface. Plagued by sudden visions, Bev comes into contact with our second protagonist, Arlud Erstallius, trying to uncover the force which has captivated Bev’s mind as the world around them descends into the ravages of war.

Author P. D. Blackwell has crafted a compelling, complex, and cinematic work of science fiction with plenty of chilling psychological undertones and all-out action scenes to offer its readers. One of the features which I found particularly impressive about this piece was its worldbuilding, and the realistic psychological and emotional demands placed upon those who find themselves living in this harsh caste system. I really felt for Bev in her struggles and I enjoyed her journey to freedom with Arlud at her side. The dialogue was also very effective, serving to display the unique traits of the characters whilst moving the complex events of the plot forward in a natural way without falling into too much extraneous backstory. Overall, I would highly recommend Chaos Rising to fans of incredible worldbuilding, space opera emotional dynamics, and readers of accomplished science fiction everywhere.

Rabia Tanveer

Chaos Rising is the first volume in The Erstallius Chronicles by P.D. Blackwell. Set in the year 3525, the peace of the colonized worlds is hanging by a thread. The Alliance of Great Clans ensures the world's safety, but all of this is about to be changed with just one incident. A series of attacks on one of Clan Polinda's colonies give Bev Colli a rare opportunity. She escapes the deplorable conditions of her clan and ends up in a bigger issue. On the other hand, we have Arlud, a regent from Clan Erstallius. When Clan Polinda points fingers at Clan Estallius, it becomes Arlud's job to get to the bottom of the things to figure out who was attacking Polinda's colonies and why it was happening. One misstep and the balance of power will be destroyed. What will he do?

Science fiction is not my comfort zone, but author P.D. Blackwell's narrative blew me away. He masterfully told the story and gave me the nudge to keep reading to give Chaos Rising a chance. The narrative is smooth, the pace is fast, and the story's overall feel is great. The mystery behind the attacks on Clan Polinda is handled well. The author builds the suspense and gives readers enough information to keep reading until the end. Arlud's character is fascinating. His patriotism does not blind him; he is calculating and very analytical. He thinks first before he acts, and that is something I admire about him the most. The dialogues are very powerful and hold clues for readers. It is a great start to the series!