Monday Review by the Book Dragon: Dune meets Indiana Jones & Romancing the Stone & Dragons!
The Book Dragon has read Sand and Storm by Stella Dorthwany and gives it a resounding 5 claws!
My review: I wasn't sure what to expect from this book by the cover and title, especially since I haven't finished several other choices from a fantasy book club I've been reading this year and wasn't expecting to like this one. But wow, pow, kaZOW, this one grabbed me by the throat and kept ratcheting up the suspense, action, danger, and yes, romance, until the very end. It would make a GREAT movie! Every single character is memorable, even the minor ones. The setting is so well-drawn, I could FEEL the heat of the desert, SMELL the storms, HEAR the explosions, TASTE the grit. So well done! But beyond that, the magic systems were understandable without getting into tedious details, as unfortunately can happen in a fantasy. The plot was not predictable, but also was believable with extremely high stakes. And I didn't even mind the multiple love triangles, because the author made the relationships SO MUCH FUN and didn't slow down the action while the romantic tangles were happening! I'm still puzzling over how Ms. Dorthwany was able to cram so much stuff into a relatively short fantasy novel, have it make complete sense, have me fall in love with several of the characters, AND tie it all up neatly, since I pretty much hate cliffhanger endings. In short, it can only be her special brand of magic! Bravo!
Here's a better image of the pretty cover, though it only tells a tiny part of the story: