This is an impressive addition to a compelling fantasy series that explores what parameters of progress improve society. Those who are familiar with the series should be aware that this is more a dystopian tale than the straight fantasy that was present in most of the previous tales since most of the story is set in a pretty oppressive society that Karigan must find a way to navigate through, complete with rampant discrimination, horrific machines and distressing brutality, as well as unexpected enemies and allies. This is not a story for the squeamish, and one should be warned that there is a fair amount of horrific violence throughout the story. I am not a big fan of stories that flip between different time periods, although I understand the necessity in this particular tale but I found myself a bit frustrated by some of the events that transpired, even as I knew they were inevitable, and I still have questions about the presence of certain characters.
The author has created a well-textured and complex world with compelling characters, and, of course, the presence of an intelligent equine is always a delicious addition to the story. I think that it might be difficult to read this as a stand-alone story, although I confess that I was still a little lost in places even though I have read the previous volumes. I am most impressed by the fantastical creatures who play such pivotal parts in this series and the beautiful word-portraits that Ms. Britain paints and I look forward to reading about more of Karigan’s adventures. Be forewarned, this is a lengthy tome, so it will necessitate a considerable time commitment, so one may not wish to start reading until several free days are available!
“Mirror Sight” by Kristen Britain is the fifth book in the ‘Green Rider’ series that centers around Rider Karigan G’ladheon. Following the traumatic events at Blackveil Forest, Karigan is thrust unwillingly into a society that is counter to most of what she has valued and fought to support all of her life, and she is dismayed to learn that she can no longer depend on the tools that she has used in the past. She meets a man who professes to support the royal line and acquires an unwilling pupil to train but discovers that he has methods of defense that she cannot tolerate, let alone learn. This person has other things to teach the beleaguered Green Rider, but must get over his ingrained preconceptions before he can establish a rapport with her. There is considerable shifting of time as the action switches between three different events that culminate in the society that Karigan is seeking to alter, but may lack sufficient weapons to do so. But a Rider doesn’t quit, and Karigan is more driven than many, and her passion and drive may recruit even the most skeptical of those around her--will it be enough?
Karigan G’ladheon is a Green Rider?a seasoned member of the elite messenger corps of King Zachary of Sacoridia. King Zachary sends Karigan and a contingent of Sacoridians beyond the edges of his nation, into the mysterious Blackveil Forest, which has been tainted with dark magic by a twisted immortal spirit named Mornhavon the Black.
At the end of Blackveil, in a magical confrontation against Mornhavon, Karigan is jolted out of Blackveil Forest and wakes in darkness. She’s lying on smooth, cold stone, but as she reaches out, she realizes that the stone is not just beneath her, but above and around her as well. She’s landed in a sealed stone sarcophagus, some unknown tomb, and the air is becoming thin.
Is this to be her end? If she escapes, where will she find herself? Is she still in the world she remembers, or has the magical explosion transported her somewhere completely different? To find out, she must first win free of her prison? before it becomes her grave. And should she succeed, will she be walking straight into a trap created by Mornhavon himself?
Mirror Sight is the highly-anticipated fifth installment of the Green Rider series.