Sunday, 1 May 2011

Transformation by Carol Berg

Seyonne is a man waiting to die. He has been a slave for sixteen years, almost half his life, and has lost everything of meaning to him: his dignity, the people and homeland he loves, and the Warden's power he used to defend an unsuspecting world from the ravages of demons. Seyonne has made peace with his fate. With strict self-discipline he forces himself to exist only in the present moment and to avoid the pain of hope or caring about anyone. But from the moment he is sold to the arrogant, careless Prince Aleksander, the heir to the Derzhi Empire, Seyonne's uneasy peace begins to crumble. And when he discovers a demon lurking in the Derzhi court, he must find hope and strength in a most unlikely place...

The characters of Transformation sucked me in from the start: the calm but spunky slave, and the spoilt but (very secretly) honourable prince. Their interaction was great, the voice in which it was told even better.

This is a story told by Seyonne, a slave since the age of 16, but he doesn't give away his past easily, it slowly unravels, depending on the will of the character to revisit it. He is bought by Zander, the prince of the Derzhi empire, and it doesn't take long to get himself in trouble.

Even though this is fantasy, there aren't elves and dwarves (and hobbits) all around. Sure there are different "races", but they are mostly different tribes. Some are different in appearance, but mostly human. Some can do magic, some can't. I liked that these different races had personality and culture of their own; their differences not a result of different physique, but of having a different history.

The central point in this story are the demons, the way they possess people and how the main character gets rid of them. I actually liked this, despite being a bit afraid at first. It isn't The Exorcist, and even if there is a lot of religion in the story as part of the cultural background, it never becomes more than that.

But, because there is always a but, the ending didn't quite work out for me. It seemed pretty tame and easy compared to all the rest, and the tying of loose threads seemed unnecessarily long. I'm not sure what I was expecting, but I think it should have had a bit more of a bang to it. Despite that, it was still a pretty decent ending, just not to the level of the rest of the book

This book reads like a standalone, although it is the first in a series. I imagine that the other books take place in the same universe, but not with the same characters.

Still, it was a very enjoyable book and a keeper, even if the ending was a bit of a let down. I liked the writing a lot and will definitely check out other books by this author.

Rating: 4 out 5

This Book on:
LibraryThing | GoodReads | BookDepository UK | Book Depository US | Amazon UK| Amazon US|


  1. Worst. Book cover. Ever. xD

  2. Come on. It ain't that bad. The dude is hot, his wings are green, and it totally reflects the book. And you shouldn't judge a book by its cover.(Yeah...right)

    Still, when I picked up the book I was amazed that the dude had wings. I swear there were no wings when I bought it.