Eternals of Shalistar #1:The Enemy of Magic by Stephan Early

“The Enemy of Magic is very much a deep fantasy focused on profound messages and thought-provoking conversations.”

Review by Rayleigh Setser

The world of Shalistar has reached the climax of its final age. Magic and sorcery, a forbidden art, have taken root in the hearts of its inhabitants. The outcome of this wickedness has come in the form of “The Messenger,” a cruel being who offers power and prestige. Those who accept the gift are granted unnatural abilities, but find themselves a slave to Baelor, the unmerciful master of “The Messengers.”

Born within this world of darkness is a group of warriors, known as The Order of the Elect. They follow the will of Aleph, the creator of Shalistar, who has guided them in battling the forces of evil for thousands of years, keeping the darkness at bay. At the end of the age, at the pinnacle of darkness, a young man and a young woman have been summoned by Aleph, to walk through trials unnumbered and meet their creator face to face at his mountain summit.

Welcome to a world where an eternal battle has been waged between good and evil. The lines have been drawn, and the people of Shalistar face the crucial choice to follow the will of Aleph or surrender to the control of Baelor. Ancient history and spiritual conflict collide in this fantastical drama, written in the tradition of The Lord of the Rings and The Chronicles of Narnia.

My local bookstore has a shelf of Local Authors at the very front of the store and this one practically jumped into my hands from that shelf. The cover called to me and after a quick glance at the blurb, I took it home and dug in.

The Enemy of Magic is very much a deep fantasy focused on profound messages and thought-provoking conversations. There are a lot of stories told by characters and the plot moves very slowly forward. It's a book that values meaning, hope, light in the darkness, and overcoming challenges.

Because I am more familiar with faster-paced fantasy, this book was difficult for me to stick with. There is excitement and adventure without a doubt, but most of this book is building up the backstory, revealing the world, and conveying messages of hope. It's just a much different pace than I am accustomed to, but I did enjoy the story and the characters. I am looking forward to continuing the story in book two!

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Content Ratings:

Action & Gore:

Rating: 6 out of 10.
6. Strong action & gore (most action sequences describe blood loss and the injury to a clear picture, albeit brief or infrequent).

Romance & Spice:

Rating: 2 out of 10.
2. Mild content (holding hands and mild kissing)

Cursing & Vulgarity:

Rating: 1 out of 10.
1. Infrequent substitute cursing (less than 10 "craps" etc. and/or book-specific curse words).

Other Trigger Warnings:

Content disclaimers: Very mild cursing. The action and gore can be intense at times. There is very little to no sexual content, though there is romance present.

Our Reviews of Other Books by this author:


Do you typically enjoy slow, meaningful fantasy? Or do you lean towards fast-paced, action-filled fantasy?

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