Light & Dark

The Awakening of the Mageknight

Young Adult - Sci-Fi
324 Pages
Reviewed on 10/09/2012
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

Daniel M. Fife was born in Indianapolis, Indiana on December 27, 1978. He began writing Light & Dark: The Awakening of the Mageknight during his years as a graduate student at Ball State University under the major of Counseling Psychology. What began as a simple hobby quickly turned into something more as he found a passion for writing. While carrying the schedule of a full-time student as well as working a part-time job, he devoted himself to write at least one page a day. After graduating in 2007, he received the opportunity to begin practicing psychology as a counselor at a local private practice the very same year. His devotion to writing did not waiver. Working a full time schedule and maintaining a full complement of clients, he maintained his dedication. A year or so later, he completed the rough draft of Light & Dark: The Awakening of the Mageknight and began the editing process, before finally publishing the final draft in 2012.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Sylvia Heslin for Readers' Favorite

Young Danny Firoth was just an average middle school kid, just like everyone else, or so he thought. Then, one innocent school day turned out to be like no other day. Danny’s day started out like any other. But, one fateful event would change the course of Danny Firoth’s life, and his destiny would be forever changed. Danny and his friends really loved to play the fantasy role playing card game called Knights. Never in a million years would they have imagined that their fantasy game was real and would come to life. Sabrina Drake, the new girl in school, wasn’t just the pretty girl that Danny liked. After Sabrina befriended Danny, she found out that he was very special just like her and possessed a unique gift. And when Danny barely escapes a demonic experience late one evening after school with the help of his new friend Sabrina, Danny’s life and the lives of his special school friends would never be the same. With this new found knowledge, Danny and his friends embark on an exciting adventure at White Rock Academy of Illumination that also includes danger and betrayal. Light against the Dark and a prophecy that foretells the return of the Mageknight; will Danny and his friends, the Knights of the Light, and the elves succeed and defeat the Dark?

"Light & Dark: The Awakening of the Mageknight" by D.M Fife was a very fun read. Even though the first chapter of the book didn’t exactly capture my attention from the start, by the second chapter until the end of the book I was completely hooked. Each and every chapter from there on turned out to be just as interesting as all of the proceeding chapters. "Light & Dark: The Awakening of the Mageknight" was just full of exciting fantasy and adventure. I especially liked how D.M. Fife portrayed and developed all of the characters in his book. Each character appeared to have a storyline of their own, but they were all still connected together, making the story cohesive. And, whether the characters are knights, elves, dragonics, squires, or the evil dark shadowy things, I felt that each of the characters played out well together and therefore made the story as believable as possible within the fantasy setting. I advise fans of all things magical to read "Light & Dark: The Awakening of the Mageknight". I guarantee that you will not be disappointed. I can’t wait to read his next book in the series to be continued in "Light & Dark: The Black Bonded".

Stephanie D.

It is the start of a new term for Danny, a decent, nothing-special 13 year old. A new girl to the school, Sabrina, catches his eye, especially when it turns out that she plays the fantasy card game Knights that Danny loves. The game has three factions of Light, Gray and Dark and pits the force of good against evil through the fantastical creatures and knights on the cards. Only it is more than that. Danny discovers that this realm actually exists. Suddenly he is rubbing shoulders with Dragonics, dragons, drakes, Shadows shifters, knights, elves and magic of all kinds. Why? What is so special about him that he has become involved? How can he help guard the Eye of Darkness while the world waits for the Mageknight?

This is a great book for young teens. It would have been easy to make the characters a little older and attitude-ridden and aimed at the popular older YA audience. But luckily this author hasn't done it. He writes perfectly for this age group. Danny and his school friends are very typical 13 year olds, apart from the odd magical quality of course, and the plot and action are ideally suited. Enough excitement, tension, threat and battle, but not too dark and disturbing. Their world might encompass good and evil but it is also an everyday one where parents and school rules have to be obeyed and homework has to be done. The story moves at a good pace from the very start and quickly draws the reader into the action. Danny develops and takes on massive responsibilities but stays his likable, still-slightly-childish self. Both adults and youngsters will enjoy this well-crafted fantasy novel.

Alice D.

It was the first day of the new school year and thirteen year old Danny Firoth was already facing problems. His friend Alonso Martinez joins him on the school bus; Alonso always speaks without thinking. Danny meets his best friend, Chris Greene, in gym class. Chris is tops at martial arts so no one ever tormented him. Not even by Steven Rooney, the school bully, or the mean-mouthed popular girl, Marie Topeland. Instead, Marie mocks the new girl, Sabrina Drake, who is of Asian origins and of interest to Danny. Danny and his friends have been playing a popular card game, "Knights", which pits the forces of good, evil and neutrality against each other. Danny's main card is that of Light which features righteous knights and holy dragons. Sabrina joins Danny in playing "Knights" and she also uses the Light card. Danny is forced into fighting Steven Rooney, but as the fight is to begin, something strange happens: Danny punches Steven in the nose, unexpectedly winning the fight. Later Danny feels the ground under him shake like an earthquake; he sees a dragon fighting a dark creature. Sabrina asks Danny if he believes in dragons, for she is a Drake, her father the master dragon Ty and her mother a human healer. Dangerous forces, the Eye of Darkness, are threatening them and so Danny and his friends, Alonso, Chris, Doug and Matt, qualify and head for a summer's training as first year squires at White Rock Island. Could Danny, living alone with his mother as his father died a hero years before, be the next Mageknight to defeat the Eye of Darkness?

Author Daniel Fife has written a brilliant and riveting fantasy/science fiction story for teens, that features totally believable human characters such as Danny and his friends and exceptionally good creatures of fantasy such as the elf Calador and Sir Bartlett, the Master of the Forge. The plot line is original and will hold readers' attention to the story's end where a continuation of the "Light and Dark" series, which will be called "Black Bonded", is promised. "Light and Dark: The Awakening of the Mageknight" follows the rules of good teenage fantasy/science fiction writing as the young heroes and heroines go off on an adventure that features twists and turns and the unearthing of a "bad guy" which will keep readers engrossed to the story's ending pages. Highly recommended for fantasy and science fiction lovers everywhere.

Anne B.

The new school year had just begun. Danny Firoth and his friends liked to play a card game called Knights to defeat the opposing player. We get many details too: "The premise of the game, divided into three factions of Light, Gray, and Dark, pitted the forces of good, neutral, and evil against one another.” There was a new girl at school; her name was Sabrina Drake. Danny was fascinated. When Steven began bullying Danny he stood up to him. Suddenly he could see which moves Steven was going to make before he did anything. Using that knowledge Danny broke Steven’s nose with one punch. Later that day he felt the school shudder and decided to investigate; what he found shocked him. A dragon with scales and expressive eyes stood before him. When a dark shadow creature attempted to attack him the dragon protected him. Sabrina could change her form from human to dragon. She was actually a Drake, half dragon and half human. Her father was a Dragonic Knight. Danny had a gift and had to make a decision to ignore all he’d seen or train to become a Knight of Light protecting the innocent from the Darkness.

"Light & Dark: The Awakening of the Mageknight" by D.M. Fife is an action/adventure fantasy tale sure to engage tweens. Fife has developed likable characters that include both male and female, thereby appealing to both genders. The plot is entertaining and exciting. This story will tempt even those who do not think they like to read. I found it easy to connect to the characters and I quickly became caught up in the plot. I felt as if I were there with Danny and Sabrina as they fought the evil shadows.