E book review: Be’askaas – Tales of Death and Redemption by Nicholas Kerkhoff

Nicholas Kerkhoff is an author from Santa Cruz, California. He says “I write, I surf, I web. I have diverse interests. Recently have been working mostly on sci-fi and fantasy. My influences range from Patrick O’Brian to Kerouac, Proust to Heinlein, and (of course) Tolkien.”

He is the author of “Be’askaas – Tales of Death and Redemption”

The resumé is: two young brothers are cast out into the hard world when their inebriated father loses the family farm. Their only option is to become apprentices for an elderly necromancer many miles away. It’s a disgusting occupation which society fears and despises. The poor rural kids know little of magic and even less about the world at large, but through a series of wizardly jobs and perilous adventures they begin to learn the true nature of power and the potential of their new dark art.

In review: this is an ambitious novel and an attempt to break into a very challenging genre. Nicholas Kerkhoff brings a new mix of magic and adventure to these ‘Tales of Death’. The plot is catchy even though it is a `orphans to glory’ type of plot reminiscent of a number of novels, it does bring new twists and turns that bring this tried and tested line to life.

The early part of the piece seemed to be less fluid and dynamic than the later chapters as if the author and the characters were getting comfortable with each other and their style. Perhaps for this reason it seemed to me to start more slowly than I had expected.
Ultimately, hats off to Kerkhoff for making a very creditable entrance with this new universe and we will get to see it develop in the books to come.


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