Posing as a beggar, Thomas escapes Magnus after fifteen men, who are calling themselves the Priests of the Holy Grail, arrive and take control of the castle through wondrous acts and apparent miracles. With the help of his longtime friend Gervaise, Thomas sets out on a journey that leads him to the ancient Holy Land. Unaware that Katherine and Hawkwood are watching over him, Thomas is tested in his beliefs and comes face to face with the ancient power that the Merlins and Druids have long been searching for.
Enter the world of Merlin’s Immortals, where ancient secrets and evil conspiracies take you on a breathless adventure of discovery, intrigue, and hidden knowledge.
Sigmund Brouwer is the author of eighteen novels with nearly three million copies in print. His recent novel The Last Disciple was featured in Time magazine and on ABC’s Good Morning America. Sigmund is married to Christian recording artist Cindy Morgan, and they and their two daughters divide their time between homes in Red Deer, Alberta, Canada and Nashville, Tennessee.
Martyr’s Fire is book 3 in Sigmund Brouwer’s Merlin’s Immortals series. And while I was less than enthusiastic about books 1 and 2, I liked this book very much. It actually changed my reaction to the first two books. (To read my reviews of The Orphan King and Fortress of Mist, click HERE.)
So who should read this book and why?
Written for the young adult audience, I think middle schoolers are the most likely to connect with Brouwer’s series. I gave the first two books to a friend. She said her boys eagerly devoured them. There is plenty of action, mystery, and tricks. The variety of characters — priests, Druids, knights, sailors, and outlaws — will also appeal to this age group. Martyr’s Fire continues the story of young Thomas, a character with more questions than answers. After his successful reclaiming of Magnus, his hold remains tenuous. Danger and threats make him take precautions that limit his contact with the people. Soon, a group of priests claiming to hold the means to bless the people take over the their hearts and force Thomas to be on the run again.
Trust, or the lack of it, seems to be the major theme in Martyr’s Fire. Thomas grew up abused by the monks who raised him; his nurse the only one who cared for him. Answers to past secrets continue to elude him. Now Thomas has Druids and Immortals vying for his allegiance all the while keeping him from the truth of his roots and destiny. Finding it difficult to distinguish between friend and foe, Thomas takes on a solitary quest to find answers that will help him reclaim Magnus once more. Fast-paced, Martyr’s Fire discloses more of just who the Immortal’s are. Characters evolve as well, allowing the reader to connect more fully with them. The legend of Merlin is expanded and is a big draw for the story.
All in all, a good series for middle schoolers who like medieval settings, epic quests and a young character that is easily identified with.
(I received this book from Waterbrook in conjunction with the CSFF Blog Tour. All opinions expressed are mine alone.)
To purchase Martyr’s Fire, click on the image below.
Be sure to check out what others on the Christian Science Fiction and Fantasy Blog Tour have to say. Click on the links below.
Emma or Audrey Engel
Meagan @ Blooming with Books
Rebecca LuElla Miller