The Prophecy Forgotten is the first of The Elysian Chronicles written by M.B. Weston. The series has been likened to C.S. Lewis, for its religious allegory, though the overtones are heavier than Narnia’s yarns. Michelle Weston says that she does not write Christian fiction, but rather, she is a Christian that writes fiction. After reading the book I would agree with her statement. The Prophecy Forgotten has Christian trappings to tell the story, as Harry Potter, Artimes Fowl, and Spiderwick have used other mythologies and trappings to create their setting and stories for younger readers.
The books are geared for younger readers, but I found it an enjoyable modern fantasy despite the age of the target audience. The cherubian’s have been at war with the mornachts for thousands of years. (read angels and demons) The battle raging across their own dimension and spilling to Earth as mornachts seek to possess and use humans for their evil ends. The cherubians also fight on Earth as the guardians and protectors of humans: assigned to watch over their charges as Guardian Angels to keep humans from harm and to subtly nudge them toward goodness and charity, so that they do not “harden” and become easier prey for the mornachts. This spreads their efforts thinly on both fronts, but they have allies in the unicorns as the other mythical races like gnomes and dragons stay relatively neutral. Gnomes are almost war profiteers in these stories.
The Prophecy Forgotten is two stories that converge and over lap, becoming the overarching plot. The prophecy refers to a human that is important in the war between good and evil that shall rise when he is most needed; a warrior named Davian realizes that the time of the prophecy is at hand. Unlike many cherubians he has not forgotten their mission handed down by Ianoda (God) to protect and watch over Man, nor has he lost his faith. Davian is the proverbial bad ass with a Bushido code. He is the leader of an elite infiltration special forces team that does extensive reconnaissance into mornacht territory, yet all he yearns for is time to read and plant a garden.
|APF Graphic Novel Concept Art: Artist: Adam Black|
Then there is Gabriella, a Guardian Angel that is set to watch over Tommy, a small eight year old boy that has a tendency to take great risks in his personal quest for adventure. Tommy appears to be the one that the prophecy is referring to. So Gabriella’s task is doubly challenging, but she is a deadly archer and committed warrior that has a mother’s love and protective instincts for the boy. Davian has of course fallen deeply in love with her. Hell I fell in love with her! So did Tommy’s dad when she assumed human form in the story.
Meanwhile there is a cabal of cherubians sick of the politicians and their far too cautious approach to the war with the mornachts and the bureaucracy that keeps final victory out of reach. These cherubians have dismissed Ianoda as a long absent father that no longer holds any importance to them. They devise a plot to take control of Elysia, pinning the blame on the mornachts.
The story itself is fairly straight forward, with clever twists and turns to entertain older readers, despite the target audience. Some of the devices M.B. Weston uses are a little cliché for my jaded mind, but they move the tale forward. I also found some very important plot points had been glossed over, or too simply resolved even for the audience it was intended for.
What really makes the story enjoyable for me, as with all stories are the characters. They are well drawn, living, breathing individuals, with well defined goals, loves and hates. Gabriella and Davian are only two examples. Marcus, Davian’s good friend and fellow soldier has the sidekick personality that Davian needs to keep him grounded, but is also the guy who has his back no matter what. Even the family of young Tommy that Gabriella interacts with are wonderful characters to meet.
|APF Graphic Novel: Artist: Adam Black |
Michelle‘s first novel is a great debut, with the second novel already out: Out of the Shadows and the third close behind. I will be delving into the second shortly, and looking forward to the third: The Sword of the Vanir.