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sentinel-joshua-winning-book-coverReleased: May 2014

Here’s one for fans of Terry Pratchett, Edgar Allen Poe and Tolkien. Joshua Winning’s Sentinel has everything fantasy readers could want: action, mystery, gore, magic and an orphan with wacky relatives.

Sentinel is about the world’s best kept secret – an underground society that works to protect the world against evil forces.

The first in the trilogy tells the story of a teenage boy who stumbles across this secret after the death of his parents and it turns his world upside down.

It’s almost impossible to describe Joshua Winning’s skill with words, so here’s a moment in the book that took my breath away and will give you the greatest taste of his writing:

“A flash of lightening lit the cemetery. Gravestones erupted from the ground like snaggle teeth to grind at the night air, and in that briefest of moments something was silhouetted amid them. A cloaked figure… Above, an elemental purr disturbed the heavens.”

Winning has a truly beautiful style of writing. His rich imagery has the power to excite the imagination, painting the story’s world in such vivid detail. However, as lovely and imaginative as this writing is, it can get a bit much.

Most definitely situated in the fantastical, the real world and that of the sentinels is not as seamlessly blended as it is in other famous novels about magic. At times, it stretches too far beyond being believable but it still remains an interesting and strangely addictive story all the same.

The beauty of Winning’s writing is admirable and, given to the right reader, Sentinel is a mysterious and magical tale. Readers who like their books rooted firmly in the real world as we know it might find this book difficult to engage with, but true fantasy fans will love it.

★★★

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