The ultimate aim of the quest must be neither release nor ecstasy for oneself, but the wisdom and the power to serve others. – Joseph Campbell.

These beautiful lines lay the foundation for the roller- coaster ride that is to follow ahead. A ride to remember and a journey to be enjoyed. 

WORLD OF DAWN- ARISE is the first part of the Series ‘World of Dawn’ by the acclaimed author, Shawn Gale.

It belongs to the genre; Science Fiction, Bildungsroman, Fantasy Fiction, and Adventure fiction. The story is a beautiful amalgamation of them all. SCIENCE FICTION as a genre deals with futuristic and imaginative concepts like time travel, parallel universe, etc. BILDUNGSROMAN is a special kind of novel that focuses on the psychological and moral growth of its main character, from his or her youth to adulthood. Such a type of novel is also known as a “coming-of-age” novel. FANTASY FICTION contains an unrealistic plot and has magic, is often set in a medieval universe, and involves mythical beings or supernatural forms as a primary element of the storyline. ADVENTURE FICTION, as the name suggests involves a fictional, creative storyline with loads of adventures. So this book, World of Dawn- Arise is a wonderful blend of all these fantastic and similar genres.

The book has 38 chapters weaved in 247 pages. Published on 14th March 2017 by Xlibris US, it is now available in India at for INR 287.70/- kindle edition. I read, the second part of the series, “World of Dawn- Reveal” first, and then I read the first part, “World of Dawn- Arise”. The reason because of which I ventured into reading a series the other way around is still a mystery but I drew two inferences from this experiment. First, both the parts or books of the series can be read as a standalone, and second, both of them are equally full to the brim with magic, mystical creatures, fantasy, adventures, and an alluring, fictional world. 

The book begins in the year 1914 in Central Mexico. It introduces the reader to one of the main characters- Ambrose. After his marriage crumbled and his two sons died, his life lost all meaning. He immersed himself in gambling and drinking and eventually, fed up, he tried to kill himself but somehow on the crucial moment, he remembered a map and it fascinated him, enticing him forward the way mystery does to brave enough to learn of its secrets. From here the adventure begins when Ambrose leaves for Mexico City. The first chapter begins in Pacific Northwest–2017. Here the rest of the characters who will be with Ambrose on this magical adventure, are introduced. Simon, Colby, Carol, Conroy, Anna, Tabby form the loyal and core team of Ambrose. A beautiful line quoted in the book says; “the past is where we have been and the future is where we are going”. 

After the roughest year of his already tough seventeen years on Earth, Tanner Kurtz finds himself at Halton House in the Pacific Northwest, along with two other young men, Colby Watts and Simon Tree. It’s a hobby farm for troubled youth that’s run by Brad Conroy, Marine vet and alternative-sentencing advocate, and his Halton House staff. Their mission statement is “Choosing to see the possibilities, not the limitations.”

Although the three boys come from different walks of life, they share a common thread. All were misguided and headed for the revolving door of life in and out of prison. Colby was busted in a car-theft ring alongside a crew of unruly rich kids, Simon for torching logging trucks with a band of eco-terrorists. And after his mother died, Tanner knocked off a dozen banks across three states with his Uncle Hanker. For the last six months, the boys have been residing at Halton House where Conroy’s two nieces, Anna and Tabby, recently arrived from San Francisco.

On a spring evening, after a three-on-three basketball game against a local prep school, the group piles into the house van. They set out for home, a boring trip they’ve made a dozen times. Only this time they never reach their destination … at least not the one they had in mind. In this installment of the series, they encounter giant insects, snakes, and scorpions amongst other things. They are on a journey, on a path towards their way home but in the process they are forced to fight demons, both inside and outside. The book leaves us grasping for more, on a white knuckle, an open ending. The quote at the end of the book, just as it was in the beginning, beautifully summarises the story.

“When you’re on a journey, and the end keeps getting farther and farther away, then you realize that the real end is the journey”. –Joseph Campbell.

It beautifully explains that it is not the ‘end of the story’ that is the best part but the expedition or the experience one lives till the end. The book ends giving way to the next part of the series, World of Dawn- Reveal which is another fabulous ride full of mysticism and magic.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: SHAWN GALE writes on Canada’s West Coast. He earned a Master’s diploma from the Fraser Valley Writers School. He graduated from Humber College’s School for Writers, where he was awarded a Letter of Distinction. He graduated from Bircham International University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Creative Writing. He was a student at the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Creative Writing department, where he earned certificates in both screenwriting and tele-writing. 

His stories have been published in periodicals and anthologies in the U.S. and Canada. He is the author of the acclaimed, award-nominated story collection The Stories That Make Us and the World of Dawn sci-fi/adventure series. He is a member of The Writers’ Union of Canada. This book, is available for buying now in India also, at a very nominal price. The rush of blood, the goosebumps, the trance that the wonderful narration and the storyline make the reader experience, is inexplicable. It is in favor of the readers, that the next part of the series, World of Dawn- Reveal has also been written, published, and is also available for purchase. A must buy for readers who appreciate a well-written Science Fiction and Young Adult Fantasy Adventure Fiction novel. 


Author Name:  Shawn Gale
Book Title:  World of Dawn: Arise
Publisher:  Xlibris US (14 March 2017)
Paperback: 247 pages  
Review by:  Criticpsace Journal

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