Skip to main content

Sentinel by Joshua Winning

Sentinel is the first part of The Sentinel Trilogy. It promises to be a very entertaining YA series. It's full of mystery, ancient terrors, a secret society dedicated to protecting the world, and one young man trying to figure out what it all has to do with him.

There are two very strong beginnings to Sentinel. First up, the prologue sends us back to 1589 and two women summoning spirits. Isabel is tutoring Jessica in the art of leading lost souls to where they belong, but something goes horribly wrong. Then, we are back in the present day. Anita and Max Hallow are embarking on a train journey, which is making Anita disproportionately anxious, seemingly. The sense of danger is nicely built, as the pair chat to a priest sitting nearby. The couple fear that something has caught up with them, and unfortunately that looks to be true.

Nicholas Hallow is left without his parents to protect him from whatever is coming. And that something is coming is undoubted. There are some weird things happening around Nicholas, not least the unseasonal weather Cambridge is suffering. I liked the use of freak snowstorms and frigid temperatures to signal the imbalance of power occurring. I also liked Nicholas' character, even though he has moments of disregarding all common sense - why go looking for trouble when it's quite obviously seeking you out anyway!

There are some other good characters too. Sam is a fighter, dedicated to the keeping Nicholas and everyone else safe. Malika is at the other end of the good/bad spectrum; she's a fiendishly deadly but beautiful malevolent force. Some of my favourite passages in the book are when she's up to no good. There's a great section where Malika is attempting to resurrect an ancient evil, full of tension, power and longing.

A lot goes on in Sentinel. Nicholas' awakening to his birthright is at the centre of the story, which involves the Sentinels themselves, their purpose and enemies. It spins out from there to include various horrors, not all of which are completely explained in this book. I think there is a lot of unravelling still to come in the second two parts. At times I couldn't quite see how it all fit together, but there is a complete story here - at the end you know there's more to come but still feel that the individual volume has its own beginning, middle, and end - which is what I ask of a series. Occasionally, it is a tiny bit overwritten but at other times it flows beautifully. Overall, it captures my attention and I think there is so much potential for the story to progress. It is well worth taking a chance on this debut author. And I must just mention the cover art, I think it looks great.

Joshua Winning was kind enough to send me a copy of Sentinel to review. It is available as an eBook right now, and you can find out more about both the author and book on his website.


Popular posts from this blog

Interview With The Vampire: Claudia's Story by Anne Rice and Ashley Marie Witter

How to Stuff Up Christmas by Rosie Blake

'Tis the season to be jolly. Unless you've found an intimate picture of another woman on your fiance's phone... Eve is heartbroken after discovering her fiance is cheating on her. Being surrounded by the joys of Christmas is more than Eve can bear, so she chooses to avoid the festivities by spending Christmas alone on a houseboat in Pangbourne. Eve gets gets an unexpected seasonal surprise when handsome local vet Greg comes to her rescue one day, and continues to visit Eve's boat on a mission to transform her from Kitchen Disaster Zone to Culinary Queen.But where does Greg keep disappearing to? What does Eve's best friend Daisy know that she isn't telling? And why is there an angry goose stalking Eve's boat?
This book illustrates how special a thing it is to have people send you books out of the blue; it's a privilege and a pleasure. I wouldn't have known about this book, let alone read and loved it, if it hadn't landed in my letterbox. I'm …

Reading Resolutions

Happy New Year!
That's 2015 done and dusted, here's to 2016 and let's hope it's filled with love and laughter, friends and fun, books and cake. And really, that's about as far as my resolutions go but I do have a few projects in mind for the coming year and beyond.

This year there are two anniversaries I want to celebrate. The first is the two hundredth anniversary of Charlotte Bronte's birth on 21st April.
Jane Eyre is one of my most favourite stories of all and I've lost count of the number of times I've read it over the years. I'll be re-reading it yet again come April, but before then I plan to read the other three novels Charlotte wrote starting with Shirley this month. I'm quite keen to read the new Claire Harman biography of Charlotte Bronte too at some point.

The other anniversary is that of Shakespeare's death 400 years ago on 23rd April. I've finally admitted to myself that reading the same half dozen plays over and over isn'…