Rating: 5 stars out of 5
Sam van Oen barely escapes freezing to death in his house, as his watch stops and fire ceases to burn. He is pulled into the Nether—a nexus between ten alien cultures—where he meets Rilan and Origon, two maji who can control the musical foundation of the universe. While coping with anxiety attacks prompted by his new surroundings, Sam must learn to hear and change the Symphony, and thus reality, in order to discover what happened to his home.
But more freezing voids like the one that started his journey are appearing, and Sam’s chances of getting back are fading. The Assembly of Species is threatening to dissolve and the maji are being attacked by those they protect, while rumors grow of an ancient, shape-changing species of assassins, returning to wage war.
The Dissolution is coming.
“The Seeds of Dissolution” is brilliant, to put it simply. It has everything I love in a book and I’m so glad I didn’t let the relationship dynamic put me off.
First of all, the world building was incredibly well done. Anybody who’s read a few of my reviews knows it’s hard to impress me with that. I have very, very high expectations of Fantasy and SciFi authors and William C. Tracy fulfilled them all. I’ve read countless books that deal with magic in one way or another, but never before have I come across anything like this. I’ve seen magic by colours a couple of times, but never by music before. It was a very unique and interesting approach.
The author did a brilliant job of slowly introducing all the different species and really making them all appear distinct and unique. I really enjoyed getting to know the Nether and its inhabitants together with Sam. There were a few drawings throughout the book and they really helped my imagination along.
Over the course of the story, we get to know characters from a few of the different species closer. The character cast was actually quite large, but they all had a very distinct voice. We get four three different POVs, but it’s immediately obvious who’s head we’re in at any given moment.
Our main protagonist is Sam. I really liked him. He’s so not your average fantasy hero. He suffers from crippling anxiety attacks, brought on by his agoraphobia and social phobia. That he still makes himself get up every time made him an extremely strong person to me. Far more than any typically perfect fantasy hero you happen across all the time.
The main plot of this book is definitely the fantasy. The romance plays a very minor part overall. This is just the type of book I want to see way more of: a brilliant plot with an MC who just so happens to be homosexual (or bisexual, as in Sam’s case). It’s incredibly difficult to find a really good fantasy novel with a protagonist who isn’t straight. There’s plenty of M/M romance with fantasy out there, but it’s just not the same. I grew up reading epic fantasy novels and I’m still not much of a romance reader, so this book had me extremely pleased. Thank you, dear author!
Long story short, “The Seeds of Dissolution” is brilliant fantasy. If you are, like me, a lover of epic fantasy with serious world building, then I’m sure you’ll love this unique approach of magic. If, however, you’re just looking for a nice romance novel with a bit of fantasy, keep looking.
Oh, this was also my first ever MMF book and I actually hesitated before picking it up just because of the relationship dynamic. I am SO glad I decided to diversify my reading habits a while ago. I think “The Seeds of Dissolution” will very likely end up being one of the best books of the year for me. And the best part: This is only part one and there are two more books that are set in the same world (but aren’t part of the series). Gonna read those very soon!
The cover is pretty cool. It looks very mysterious. Love those black flowers.
Sales Link: Amazon
Book details: Kindle Edition, 436 pages
Published December 19th 2017 by Space Wizard Science Fantasy