Grampy's Reviews > Red Leaves and the Living Token

Red Leaves and the Living Token by Benjamin David Burrell
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's review
Jun 06, 2012

it was amazing
Read in September, 2012

"Red Leaves and the Living Token" by Benjamin David Burrell is a riveting Fantasy featuring multiple interwoven sub-plots, with a captivating over-arching theme. Three distinct "species" of characters are the primary personalities in this story: Bota, Zo, and Petra. The Bota are a BOTAnical species, the Zo are a ZOoligical species, and the Petra are a rock species. It took me more than half the book to recognize the relationship between their names and their composition, but thereafter it was quite helpful in keeping track of who was what.

The three kingdoms maintained an uncomfortable détente, and generally kept to themselves. Long before the story began, the magical "Reds" were destroyed, and the "Token" was lost. A long-believed prophecy held that someone would come to restore the Reds, with the help of the Token. The Reds, no doubt reflecting a time of greater inter-kingdom cooperation, consisted of a bird (zoological), a bush (botanical) and a stone (rock), each of which was red in color, and each of which possessed magical healing powers. The Token was a memento containing each of these three symbols.

This story was very absorbing. Several parties were seeking the token, in the belief that some remnant of the Reds still remained, but could only be found with the help of the token. Much distrustful cooperation between and within the kingdoms factored into the search for the ancient artifact, largely fueled by the disappearance of a sick 13-year old boy believed to possess some knowledge the others wanted.

The story contained a great deal of action, and would really make an intriguing movie, in my opinion. I not only recommend this book; I URGE you to read it. Without spoiling it for you, I think I can disclose that one of the three Reds was found, leaving open the way for the two sequels which follow!

One additional comment - even before I read the previous review, I, too, had thought that a table up front, listing the names of the characters along with the roles they played in the story, would have been a nice helpful component. However, I, too, have a gradually declining memory, so it's certainly not a detrimental remark against the author! He did a superb job developing this story, and I can't wait to see the movie. (Is anybody in Hollywood paying attention?)
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