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Reviewed by Lex Allen for Readers' Favorite
“Everything that has happened, is happening, will happen again.” With this single sentence, authors Isu Yin and Fae Yang have summarized the story, delivered bait guaranteed to lure the reader in, and before the end of the first chapter, they’ve set the hook. This is world-building at its best, as good combats evil in a metaphysical fantasy epic that features a cast of the most fascinating characters I’ve encountered in fiction. For the rest of this synopsis, I’ll use the words of the authors as I couldn’t improve upon them in describing the story. “Cruentus Fate, a young Royal from the second kingdom of Mu, becomes entangled in the battle for the Capital as she and her brother, Abyssus, seek out the truth about their relationship with the enigmatic Grim. Her life turns upside down when she’s separated from her brother and sold to the brothel by their father, the King of Macellarius. The brothel’s Madam, Fortuna, takes Fate under her wing and broadens her knowledge of the Empire, the war at hand, and the secret behind her existence.”
Rota Fortunae (Grim’s Truth) is among the best written, most imaginative, and intricately plotted fantasy stories I’ve had the pleasure to read since The Lord of the Rings. But, where that epic tale relied heavily on war, familiar mythological themes and creatures, and the overarching world dominating power of an evil, supernatural being, Rota Fortunae is a character driven story, supported by a covert revolution, ingenious metaphysical attributes and events, and an imaginary world complete with a new language, concepts of universal laws, and a wonderfully orchestrated villain. I was impressed with the Reference Guide snuggled between the end of the book and a sneak preview of book two, although I wish it had been in the front of the book. For future readers... know it's there in case you feel the need to check out some of the terminology in the story. Equally impressive, Rota Fortunae will not leave you hanging by your fingernails from the edge of the proverbial cliff. The conclusion of book one ties up several major plot lines while leaving open a few necessary to continue forward to the next book. And praise the gods of authorship, book two and the conclusion of this short series, Conundrum (Grim’s Truth #2), is available now!