The Wicked Instead by Vivien Weaver

Posted February 5, 2012 by Kate in Liked It, Review / 0 Comments

Cary and Lindsay Delaney have always known they were special. Warriors for God, their father said, meant to bring about the Rapture, and every moment in their family’s isolated Ozarks compound was spent preparing for that day. Cary’s paraplegic injury put an end to that dream, however, and the brothers, now estranged from the father who once exalted them, find a different kind of magic in the streets of Springfield, Missouri.
When I accept a book for review, almost always there is at least one element in the synopsis that gets me excited to read the book (after all if I was reviewing books I didn’t find a little bit exciting I would start to hate reviewing). For this book it was the concept of siblings. I love the idea of bring family into the fantasy realm. A lot of time in fantasy books a characters family is the people they meet along the way, the people that have gone through the journey with them; seldom is it actually someone who shares a blood relation to them. And siblings can have one of the strongest bonds in a family, so a story about brothers definitely peaked my interests. 
One of the first things I liked really had to do with the sibling bond, both of the brothers have many aspects of themselves that are challenging. Cary is a paraplegic and while that kind of injury could end up being a strain on not only the person but the caregiver, these brothers stay together and are willing to do anything it takes to make sure the two of them are taken care of. I also appreciated that the author didn’t just put the focus on the character with the disability, Lindsay has just as much depth and challenges in his life to make him a true character within the book. It’s really easy to like both of these boys. They have clearly lived a hard life, so it’s not hard for a reader to not only like them early on in the book but also to pull for them, to want them to succeed. It seems like a simple thing, getting a reader to pull for a character, to like a character, but it really isn’t. This book accomplished it and accomplished it very well. 
Another thing I really appreciated within this book is the world building. The author had to establish not only the life that the boys lived in before coming into a supernatural world, and then go on and paint the picture of the supernatural world that these boys come to be a part of. It was easy to picture both environments in my head, and the descriptions were not only good descriptions, but they were well written. I have to say the whole novel itself was very well written, especially the dialogue. 
I like that the boys come into the taltos world with no knowledge, so I got to go along with their journey along side them, learning everything they were learning at the same time. It made it so much easier to understand the characters emotions. The boys have a lot of responsibility on their shoulders with trying to make sure the World Tree is kept in healthy and by proxy the taltos world staying intact. 
Overall, I found this book to very a very unique and interesting read. I loved the sibling bond more than anything though. I think readers of both urban and epic fantasy would enjoy this book, because quite frankly I feel like the author incorporated aspects/traits of both genres into one book; but in a way that worked really well and was quite an enjoyable read. 

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