The Darkened Land

In a land of perpetual darkness…

…the city of Agapay stands as a beacon of light in the midst of a raging war.

Lachlaniel has never known the light until a man with one of the King’s light-giving stones passes by. Dazzled by the wonders, beauty, and gifts it bestows, Lachlaniel leaves Fairvale to find a stone. Accompanied by a friend and aided by some of the King’s finest warriors, he makes his way to Agapay pursued by the creatures of Darkness. His quest has roused the enemy unleashing a flood of destruction. The great city is in peril.

Can Lachlaniel obtain a stone before the forces of evil engulf the city? Can he and his friends turn the tide of destruction, or will the light fail and the defenders succumb to the legions of darkness?

Review

Epic Fantasy

The Darkened Land is epic fantasy at its very best. Centered on a great battle between darkness and light, the story draws together a band of allies who each face their own trials, not to mention demons. There’s no shortage of fantastic–and deadly–creatures, and no rest for those rushing to try and save the great city of Agapay from being overrun. Each skirmish draws them closer to a final battle where the stakes are life itself. If you love Tolkien, you won’t want to miss this premier novel by Larry Paris, where heroes must find their way in a Darkened Land.

– T.E. Bradford, Author of the Divide Series

Thought Provoking

Loved this book. It was really easy to read – intriguing concept, likeable characters, relatable reactions to events, and all the features of a good fantasy: supernatural elements, adventure, courage, deaths and destruction, a whole world to explore, honor and love (but nothing inappropriate).

It’s a clean read, and as a Christian I found this thought provoking and a bit challenging in a good way.

– Author Alison Guynes

A Recommended Read

I would rate this a four star fantasy. If you are familiar with Christian themes and language, you’ll pick up on the fact that this is meant to be an allegory, with some pretty clever parallels. If you’re not, and Christian fantasy isn’t your favorite, don’t worry. It’s still subtle enough that you’ll simply enjoy a solid high fantasy adventure. Either way, it’s a recommended read.

– Author Sarah Ashwood Blackwell

A True Christian Work of Art

This is a true Christian work of art.
I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. I’ve not read very much fantasy but this book was awesome. There were ups and downs, rights and wrongs, subtle romance and comedy. I was moved to tears in places, on the edge of my seat in others and covered in goosebumps in others. I can’t wait to read the rest of the series.

– Regina Dillon Broach Author of The Defender Series

Something for Everyone

“The Darkened Land” is an entertaining allegory that covers a lot of ground, sending a wide cast of characters on various adventures and offering plenty of food for thought. There’s something for everyone in this book: heroic quests, fierce battles, a touch of romance… this book could easily appeal to a wide range of readers. “The Darkened Land” is a clean read, avoiding profanity, bedroom scenes and gratuitous violence. While there is violence, it’s not dwelt upon, and it’s certainly not the focus of the story. Rather, Mr. Paris crafts an intriguing fantasy world of virtuous characters and places them in challenging situations, the perfect environment to explore spiritual concepts in a tangible way.

-Tony Ross

A Good Start to a Series

With allegorical connections to Christianity, The Darkened Land is a fun adventure tale of a man and a quest for the stones of light. Along with his friends, Lachlaniel goes across the Godwin to find his stone and meet with the king. In their world, eyes are not able to do anything, unless they can see using the light carried in stones. There are plenty of suspenseful moments of attacks and trials along the trails. 

I enjoyed a lot of the discussions about the nature of need and the purpose of seeking out the light, and the quest to find the king. The philosophical and theology points are well done. 

–  Author C.S. Jonson

Wholesome Gospel Teaching in a Fantasy Context

Anyone calling this book fantasy is going to bring more confusion than guidance, like offering a can of ginger ale and then realizing that it’s really apple juice after the first sip. This is allegory. The pacing and world building is totally different. If you want to learn to walk by faith not by sight, this cleverly written narrative repackages wholesome Gospel teaching into a fantasy context like a spoonful of sugar that helps the medicine go down. This is Pilgrim’s Progress recast for a modern audience. The author shows a deep relish for Jesus’ teachings and works them into the story in a way that makes it easier to incorporate into daily life for those of us who don’t know a lot about tending sheep or vineyards. The big difference is that the names of characters are taken from Hebrew, Greek, and a few other languages so that you have to do a bit of research to comprehend every angle. Overall I am very impressed by the sincerity and the lively imagery that come across through these pages as they teach us to follow Christ ever more fully. – Faber Lymehill

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