The Seal

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 22 Aug 2019

Member Reviews

You can find this review and all of my others over at www.readbookrepeat.wordpress.com

Actual rating of 2.5

This book was pretty short, the paperback version comes in at around 180 pages according to Goodreads, so this is partly the reason behind my lower rating. For a relatively short book, it felt like it took way too long for me to get through it. I found that I would pick it up, and after a chapter or two put it back down because I just couldn't be bothered, which for me isn't the greatest. I feel this had a lot to do with the pacing and how convoluted the story came across. In this instance, I feel that a shorter page length only ended up hurting what could have been an absolutely fantastic story.

There was a lot of info-dumping for a good while in the beginning of this story, which is where I think it would have been more beneficial had the book been longer as this would have allowed the author to delve into the world building properly, even after finishing it, I'm still a bit confused on the meaning behind a lot of terms used. I realise now, after seeing another reader's review on Netgalley, that there was apparently a glossary which explained a lot of the more ambiguous terms, however, I never came across this in my kindle version of the book; so if you do read this story and find you're having a bit of trouble, please try and find this glossary as I think it will help a great deal.

The premise of this story was fantastic, and I feel that it could have been so much more than what this first instalment turned out to be. As I said above, having a longer page count would have helped a great deal as the story was very convoluted and I found that I wasn't so much taking in or focusing on what was going on in the plot because I was still trying to wrap my head around the terms and the small amount we knew about the world. The author wrote as though we knew exactly what was going on, where I felt that I was dropped in the middle of something and left to fend for myself.

The characters showed great promise, but once again, due to such a small page count, they didn't have a lot of chance to gain their own voice and endear themselves to me. I was interested in their stories and I'm hoping that these are explored more through the coming instalments, but I'm not feeling super keen to pick them up at this point, but who knows what can happen in the future.

The story had great promise, but just fell a little short in it's execution, I am interested to see what happens to Roshan and everyone, and I have a soft spot for Zana, I'm just a bit torn because I feel like if the story had have been longer, it would have been SO much better.
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Persian mythology introduced the djinn or genies, being know for using supernatural ways to grant wishes or perform magical feats. In ancient times King Solomon had a heavenly ring used to subdue the djinn and they are trying to find it to free themselves from bondage. Will Roshan be able to find the ring in time or are the djinn doomed forever? This is the first book in a trilogy and a good introduction to the storyline. There are characters to love and many who are not so endearing. Roshan and her brother must work to find the seal before it is too late but what are the consequences even if she does find it?
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Just under 200 pages, The Seal is a fast and easy read. However, because it is so short, the story is convoluted and rushed. I understand this will be part of a series, but nothing about this book made me wanted to pick up a sequel. None of the characters are particularly likable and some of the terminology was just confusing.
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Unfortunately, I will not be leaving a review for this book, because it didn't touch me enough to finish it. I read half of the 142 pages story until I realized that I couldn't care for any of the characters. They all sound the same, they all think the same. They have no distinct personalities. Heck, but mid-story, I still couldn't get most of their names straight because none of them stood out. Well, maybe the protagonist, but only because she is the typical Mary Sue Chosen one. 

Sorry, I'll pass on this book.
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Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for the opportunity to read this book!
I loved the idea about a book with djinn magic. 
At the beginning the book grabbed my attention and I really enjoyed the start with all the mystery around Roshan and her brother but somewhere in the middle I felt stuck and the story was not moving and felt very boring. 
I managed to finish the book but I feel like something is missing and the story is not developed enough for me to continue with the series.
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The Seal invited us into the most intriguing of worlds, the world of magic and entities, unknown and unseen, yet omnipresent and ever-so-powerful. The book, being quite short in length, introduced a myriad of characters, all different from each other yet united in their fight and struggle to attain and live by the principles they believe in. What a great book it was to read, even though, it was not without its faults.

First, the magic and the representation of religion in this book was off the walls. It is clear that the author had created such a vast and rich place for this book and its characters. It was interesting to see the progression from the world we were first introduced to into something much darker and crueler. The readers get to see the length some would go to force their beliefs onto others and how much faith can carry a person when all else seems to fail. I know this is a bit abstract, but I’m trying not to give anything away. Sorry, not sorry!

Which leads us to the limitations of this book. It’s crowded. When I started reading it, I felt like I was standing in the middle of the mob and trying to listen in and comprehend multiple people’s conversations. I didn’t know their names, their purpose, why I was even so intent on listening to them. I just knew that I was confused and I wanted to focus on one thing. In addition to that, this book was very diverse and that is a GOOD thing, don’t get me wrong. Many books lack diversity and are set in worlds that, at this point, feel mundane and ordinary. This book was different, unique; diversity wasn’t only present in this book, it was, quite frankly, drowning it. I’m foreign myself, of Asian origin, so diversity is a darling I welcome in every book. But, here, the location of the story, the names, the magics, the beings, everything was so hard to remember and keep track of; an issue that dissipated the further you read and got into the story. Regardless, it was a definite challenge in the beginning and, for a bit, made it hard to continue. The story is wonderful but no one is going to read it if they can’t get past the first few chapters.  

Overall, I would definitely recommend it to people. It broadens one’s horizon, their knowledge of religion and fiction, and is quite an enjoyable read. But before they pick it up, I would have to tell them to remain focused and take notes at the beginning of the book, just to make sense of some things and characters. Disclaimer: I received this book for free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
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I really enjoyed the world that was built in this book, it was really well done. The characters were interesting and the story was very well written.
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YA fantasy about Djinn, magic and religion. A short book featuring many characters with interweaving storylines.

Considering how short this book is, there were a lot of characters and interweaving storylines. Somehow it all worked. The author clearly has a strong knowledge of this world, or possibly just had access to a good reference book as the descriptions weren’t very in-depth. As I read this on Kindle, I was able to make use of the inbuilt dictionary feature to look up some of the terms I wasn’t familiar with. 

At first when each chapter introduced a new set of characters, I thought this would get confusing but I soon got to grips with who they were and their relation to each other.

I thought this book has a strong plot and set of characters. It did lack some of the rich descriptions that other fantasy books have but this world and characters could potentially be developed more in sequels.
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This is a well written book, but it’s definitely most suited for a particular ethno-religious group. I had to do a fair amount of googling to understand what was going on. It’s a good book, but it’s not going to appeal to the mainstream population- and that’s totally ok!
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A good start for a new series. I appreciated the cast of characters, the world building and the engrossing plot.
I look forward to reading other books in this series.
Recommended!
Many thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for this ARC, all opinions are mine.
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JF Mehentee begins this proposed trilogy on strong footing.  Mehentee has created a strong central character and begins establishing a fantasy universe in this book.  I enjoyed the author’s voice and found much to love in this fantasy adventure.  Looking forward to what is next in the series.
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