PATH OF THE HERETIC (The Beholder #2) by Ivan Amberlake-a review
ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date March 5, 2015
After Emily Ethan is gone, Jason is left with too many questions unanswered. Betrayed by the one he loved and yet hurting after losing her, Jason is eager to find out what actually happened to Emily.
When he least expects it, the Darksighted return to New York City, but they are not after Jason. They seek to destroy those who may know something about where Emily can be.
The more Jason gets to know the world of Energy and Sight, the harder it is for him to belong in this world. He can’t enter the Sight when there are too many people around. And then Emily comes to his dreams and gives him clues of where to look for the answers.
The question is: should he believe her, or is it just another attempt to get him killed?
REVIEW: PATH OF THE HERETIC is the second installment in Ivan Amberlake’s dystopian-style The Beholder urban fantasy series. The continuing story finds Jason Walker aka The Beholder on the search for the Heretic and Emily Ethan. I would strongly suggest reading the series in order as a large portion of the world building and background information are revealed in book one-THE BEHOLDER.
Told from several third person perspectives, the storyline and the series focus on a dystopian future where the Lightsighted (good) are at war with the Darksighted (evil). The Sighted have the ability to manipulate energy using the ‘Sight’-a virtual world where everything is revealed in energy, color and light. The prophecies have foretold of The Beholder, and the Lightsighted have found their Savior, the ONE, in Jason Walker. Jason has yet to come into his full powers, and in this, the Darksighted and their leader Pariah have set their sights on the destruction of the Beholder. What ensues is an action packed storyline of cat and mouse; betrayer and the betrayed; friendship and loss.
As I had said in my previous review of THE BEHOLDER, the premise and world are very reminiscent of The Matrix, a film based on the Sci-Fi novel Neuromancer by William Gibson where the characters must enter into a virtual existence between worlds; where a battle rages for supremacy and control; where a Savior has been tasked with saving the world.
The secondary and supporting roles include all of the previous storyline characters. The ‘Trinity’ of Matt, Debbie and Jason continue on their quest to ferret out the Darksighted but find themselves involved in a war not of their making. Friends will become enemies; enemies will become allies; death and destruction are a heartbeat away. Emily Ethan, the woman with whom Jason had fallen in love, is a continuing mystery as to her real intent and purpose.
The world building continues to be complex, detailed and intriguing. We follow the Beholder’s evolution; his strengths, his weakness, and his inability to stop the Pariah. There are paths to be chosen; doors to be opened; boxes never to be touched. The reader is pulled deeper into the mind of the Darksighted, the Transcendent, and the Sighted. Path of the Heretic finds our hero on a journey where what is revealed is not always easy to understand; and what he is tasked to do, is not always easy to undertake. The Lightsighted continue to be at a disadvantage throughout most of the story. Those not gifted with the ‘Sight’-the unsighted-will become pawns and victims of the war. From New York to London we are pulled into the ‘otherworld’ of virtual time and energy.
Once again, there is a theologian-feel to the storyline: a savior, the apostles, a Judas, the Pariah and a heretic-but who is the heretic, the dissenter, the nonconformer? The man in charge knows that to send Jason into the world means that sacrifices will have to be made to achieve the ultimate goal. The search for the heretic reveals many paths, and many potential enemies and friends.
PATH OF THE HERETIC is an intense, wondrous and profound storyline. Ivan Amberlake’s style of writing is imaginative, intelligent and compelling. The reader is pulled into a virtual world of energy and light; where good does not always conquer evil; where the allure of power comes in many manifestations.
Copy supplied by the author.
Reviewed by Sandy
An urban fantasy writer, an avid beta-reader, proofreader and editor who enjoys reading fantasy, crime and thriller books.
I love active protagonists who get into a lot of trouble on their way to the truth, and never give up whatever happens to them.
I love watching action movies like The Matrix, Harry Potters and have a soft spot for sitcoms like Friends and The Big Bang Theory.