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Reviewed by Lexie Fox for Readers' Favorite
Fatal Shadow is the latest fantasy epic from Noel Coughlan. As the first installment of the Champions of Fate series, the book introduces the character of Drinith and the fantasy world she lives in. Leaping quickly into action, the book establishes Drinith’s character and the losses she has experienced with great pace and detail. Following Drinith on her journey to find friends and allies amongst the world’s exiles and outcasts is a delight, with gorgeous prose highlighting both the desolate danger and the wonderful sense of spectacle as the journey unfolds. The reader constantly feels the long shadow cast by villain Magian, with the characters' reputations being established solidly before they make their proper entrance into the story.
As the story unfolded, I found myself particularly interested in each of the unique and engaging characters that author Noel Coughlan has created to populate his exciting fantasy world. Each one finds a new angle to introduce which allows the nuances and complexities of the setting to gradually unfold and develop without ever getting overwhelming. Each character’s stake in the story helps the reader to invest further into Drinith’s journey, culminating with a tapestry of well-considered and developed characters who interact with each other and the world in dynamic and interesting ways. Fatal Shadow is an excellent opening to what promises to be an exciting fantasy series, with danger and action around every corner and deep and coherent lore binding the work together. I recommend this book to fans of the fantasy genre and await the next installment with great anticipation.