The Labyrinth Wall

Obsidian Series

Children - Fantasy/Sci-Fi
268 Pages
Reviewed on 06/13/2014
Buy on Amazon

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    Book Review

Reviewed by Faridah Nassozi for Readers' Favorite

In The Labyrinth Wall by Emilyann Girdner, Araina had just received her meal for the week - three potatoes, a dead rat, and two canisters of water - from the Creators. Back at her hideaway, she ventured beyond her usual space and discovered another part of her world that she had not seen before, with real water, unlike the acid type around the labyrinth, and even some edible fruit. As if the wonders of the day could not end, she saw a man magically appear through the labyrinth wall. Curious to know about the world beyond their current confines, Araina and a new ally decide to find and talk to the man with magical healing powers that came through the wall. They have to break him out of the Creators' heavily guarded castle; a place where none of their kind can ever be allowed to enter. Araina hates the helpless feeling of always living on the Creators' terms and she is determined to do something about it. But first she and her companions must survive through a maze of endless dark tunnels filled with all kinds of deadly creatures, sharp blades, poisonous gases, and endless traps.

The Labyrinth Wall by Emilyann Girdner is a captivating tale of bravery and the power of determination in a land haunted by hunger, death and misery, and survival of the fittest. The contrast between the life lived by the Mahk and the Creators is simply astonishing and Emilyann Girdner brought it out perfectly. Emilyann Girdner’s incredible writing skills take you from this world and dump you in the labyrinth with Araina and company as they navigate the endless deadly tunnels. The characters are so real and I was able to connect with them so deeply that I was even able to feel the chills every time Araina came face to face with death, and was forced to hold my breath as she fought to survive. But more importantly, the relief I felt every time she beat the odds was so magnificent. The Labyrinth Wall by Emilyann Girdner is an amazingly captivating page-turner and I loved reading every single page.

Tania Staley

The Labyrinth Wall, the first book of the Obsidian Series, by Emilyann Girdner, is a book of adventure, intrigue, and discovering the world from a new perspective. Araina is a Mahk that lives in the labyrinth. Mahks have one purpose in life, to gather obsidian for the Creators so that in return they can eat. During the two years of existence after her awakening, she has lived by one motto that seems to drive the existence of every Mahk: “You offer obsidian, you eat, you kill, and you survive.” She keeps her head low, avoiding both Creators and Mahks, hoping that she doesn’t have to kill in order to survive. The labyrinth is a dangerous place with frightful creatures, poisonous plants, acidic waters, and hungry Mahks willing to do anything for a morsel of food. But the labyrinth is her home, and she strives to make the best of the only place she has ever known. With her faithful pet bird, Blue, she hides in her secret spot of solitude. She will soon learn, though, that the world is bigger than she could have imagined. When she sees a strange man pass through the labyrinth wall, she is determined to find him so that he can lead her outside the wall. But will her journey take her to a peaceful new realm, or are there even worse horrors past the labyrinth wall?

Emilyann Girdner’s book, The Labyrinth Wall, is a fascinating and engrossing book that readers will find hard to put down. Beyond each new bend of the labyrinth there are wonderfully unique and exciting creatures to discover. Even more compelling than the fantasy realm Girdner has created is the character of Araina. She is a flawed, distrustful, reclusive girl thrust into the role of unlikely heroine, and her growth throughout the story is wonderful to witness. In fact, the unique cast of characters Girdner has created makes this story most rewarding. The Labyrinth Wall is a fun and fanciful tale that is sure to entertain. I’m truly invested in the Obsidian Series after reading this book, and I can’t wait to see what Emilyann Girdner does in the sequel.

Mamta Madhavan

The Labyrinth Wall (Obsidian Series) by Emilyann Girdner is an adventurous fantasy tale for children with one adventure leading to another. Ariana is a teenage girl made to live in a labyrinth. Her life changes forever when one day she sees the mysterious figure of a man dressed in white walk in through the walls. Her creators have kept her confined there and now, after seeing this man, a wave of hope washes over her. She has to decide if she can trust anyone to get out of the labyrinth wall. Will she finally be able to set herself free from the walls that have confined her?

The story is gripping and intriguing and it will hold readers' attention till the very end. There is something very mysterious about a labyrinth which gives this fantasy fiction a refreshing perspective. Ariana comes across as a strong girl and the bleakness and starkness of her world and her strength and will to survive have been captured well in the story. The twists and turns in the plot make it fast paced and the mystery of what lies beyond the labyrinth walls makes it an awesome adventure story. The inner monologue by Ariana exposes the inner conflict, her lack of trust in others and a curiosity in knowing what lies on the other side of the walls in the story. It is a book that all fantasy lovers will find addictive and thrilling. A well written adventure tale that makes me look forward to the next book in the series.