Somewhere hidden in “The Seventh Sentinel” there is a great story. A story about good and evil, about youngsters growing up to accept life, death and faith, and learning to find their place in the world. The plotline is too complicated to give here, but it involves heaven, earth, hell, humanity’s place in that mix, and those destined to protect and keep us here.
However, there is a lot of extraneous material that, descriptive and/or consequential as it may be, gets in the way of the story. This book needs a good copy edit, with perhaps even some structural advice thrown in, to get rid of the chunks of physical and metaphysical description that slow down the action.
Because there’s plenty of action. There is enough armament, both physical and spiritual, enough testosterone, enough battle, guts, and glory to satisfy the most avid action/adventure fan. There are angels, demons, and regular old human heroes and bad guys galore. Strong emotion in strong men abounds. There’s even a love story (relegated to minor characters where such trivial emotions belong).
This book should be a graphic novel. The plotline is perfect. A picture being worth a thousand words, the huge amount of ink spent on describing the clothing and weapons of the heroes could be replaced with images. And in a graphic novel, the author wouldn’t be tempted to intersperse the action with so much philosophical, religious and historical analysis.
The main problem I have with this book is my inability to recommend it to any specific readership. While the lack of sophistication in the plotline and the action are appropriate to younger teenage boys, the philosophical level of the material is far beyond their interest or appreciation. This looks like the start of a series. Perhaps now that the backstory is out of the way, new books will be cleaner. I hope so, because I enjoy this writer’s ideas.
Recommended for action/adventure novel fans who don’t mind skimming the slow spots.
(3 / 5)
BTW, there is no parking inside the walls of Le Mont St. Michel. It’s one of the most visited destinations in France, and a lot of people have been there. Details count.