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Reviewed by Jack Magnus for Readers' Favorite
Metzra: World of Metzra, Book 1 is a dark epic fantasy novella written by M.U. Phoenix. Oren’s place in the world was staid and settled. He had followed his father’s counsel in all things, and, through his hard work, became a leader in the small village of Medres where he lived. Oren then sought the hand of Itara, the daughter of a wealthy family, and the two had a daughter, Erya. Life would have been idyllic but for the strange friendship of Itara with Arbara, the wife of Javen, and mother of Raivy. Itara seemed to have an unnatural attachment to her friend, and had even mentioned to her husband that she could not imagine surviving without Arbara. So when Arbara died, Itara started to wither away until Oren began to despair of her ever healing again. Erya recalled that Raivy would often come by when his mother visited. She was determined to find him and bring him to see her mother, hoping that might be the cure for Itara’s decline, but finding Raivy would prove more difficult than she had imagined.
M.U. Phoenix’s dark epic fantasy novella, Metzra: World of Metzra, Book 1, is an engrossing and thought-provoking tale about parallel worlds and hybrid beings. I enjoyed learning about the hybrid races inhabiting Metzra, and seeing how the two worlds were connected through the characters in the story. Phoenix’s plot is ingenious, and the characters are well-defined and authentic. The story, while dark, and punctuated with seemingly random violence, works on a number of levels. Metzra: World of Metzra, Book 1 is an intriguing debut novella that’s highly recommended.