[Note: This is my first in a series of posts on up-and-coming authors. Whether newly published, in the process of selling a manuscript, or still looking for an agent, these are authors who -- through word-crafting, plot-building, or sheer poetry of action -- have captured my mercurial and selective attention.]
Book One of the trilogy The Fate of Port Goldsend, Alliance, pits new ways against the established culture, drawing in the various threads of Dragon Riders, Fate Changers, Map Makers, the Barter Lord himself, and young painter Rainbow. Against the backdrop of a bustling port city, we watch the various backstories intertwine into one compelling narrative.
McReynolds skillfully weaves believable characters, exquisite imagery, and a cause worth fighting for into a world where many humans still have ties to their animal brothers. It is the complexity of character that draws the reader in: we empathize with the very human desires of the antagonist; we question the motivations of the protagonist; we secretly root for the cause of the rebels.
When an author can give us a fun romp while bringing us face-to-face with some of our long-held convictions, the uncomfortable squirming is worth the ride. D.M. McReynolds delivers meaning with dexterity, not stooping to preach, but rather providing fodder for thought.