Edward Lazellari brings you The Lost Prince, and the race to find the missing prince is on . . .
In Lazellari’s debut fantasy, Awakenings, New York City cop Cal MacDonnell and photographer Seth Raincrest found themselves stalked by otherworldly beings intent on killing them. The two had to accept the aid of a mysterious woman to unlock their hidden pasts, and what they discovered changed their lives.
Everything they knew about their lives was an illusion. They had in fact travelled to our dimension from the medieval reality of Aandor to hide their infant prince from assassins, but upon arriving, a freak mishap wiped their memories. Cal, Seth, and the rest of their party were incapacitated, and the infant prince was lost.
Thirteen years later, that prince, Daniel Hauer, is unaware of his origins--or that he has become the prize in a race between two powerful opposing factions. Cal and Seth’s group want to keep Daniel safe. The other wants Daniel dead—by any means necessary.
From the streets of New York City to the back roads of rural North Carolina, the search for the prince sets powerful forces against each other in a do-or-die battle for the rule of the kingdom of Aandor.
Against a backdrop of murder, magic, and mayhem on the streets of New York City, victory goes to the swiftest and the truest of hearts. “Combines crossover fantasy in the style of Charles de Lint and Mercedes Lackey with urban fantasy reminiscent of Jim Butcher in a hard knocks action tale.”—Library Journal on Awakenings
Edward began his career as a storyteller writing and illustrating for Marvel Comics. He turned his attention to prose fiction and earned his BA in English literature at Rutgers University. His first prose story, "The Date" appeared in Playboy Magazine. The first Guardians of Aandor series, Awakenings (Tor Books), debuted in August 2011, and the second novel, The Lost Prince, dropped on Aug. 20, 2013. Book 3, Blood of Ten Kings, will drop on Dec. 4, 2018. Hobbies include concerts, live shows, poker tournaments, game nights, movies, softball, biking, eating unhealthy snacks, and books (obviously).
Regarding rating books: Reading for work five days a week, Edward does not suffer a bad or mediocre story when reading for pleasure. For that reason, you will rarely find one or two star reviews on his page. As a creative artist, Edward would prefer to lead followers to good works than disparage people from reading something he personally did not enjoy. This is because it's possible others might find value in that story. One man's trash is another man's treasure.
Excellent follow-up to "Awakenings". Ending of this book left you wanting to read the next without the TV style cliffhanger of the first book. The characters have grown and an interesting twist was added. Very nice work. I look forward to #3!
Back when I reviewed the first Guardians of Aandor novel, I recall that one of my biggest concerns with the story was that the eclectic mashup of high fantasy and contemporary urban elements would play havoc with reader expectations. However, with this sequel, the series may have finally found its feet, thanks to clever storytelling by author Edward Lazellari.
The Lost Prince picks up immediately after the events of Awakenings. Thirteen years ago, a group of unrelated individuals found themselves waking up with no memory of who they were or where they came from, but in the time since, they have each made a new life for themselves. Granted, some of them were more successful at it than others. A few of them got married and started families. A couple of them even became leaders in their respective communities, or found fame and fortune. And somewhere, a thirteen-year-old boy is on the run, unaware of his connection to all these individuals and to the fact that their lost memories have everything to do with him.
But now the dam has broken. Everywhere, our characters are remembering the past and their true purpose: to find and return a lost prince to the alternate dimension they all came from, a feudal medieval realm called Aandor. Thirteen years ago, they were transported to our world in order to escape invading forces from the rival kingdom of Farrenheil, but due to a botched magical spell by the group’s wizard, they all ended up with amnesia. The prince, an infant at the time, was lost in the confusion and was thus raised by a foster family with no knowledge of his real identity or the fact he is the heir to an entire kingdom. Now the boy has grown into a young teen named Daniel, running from the law after killing his abusive stepdad in self-defense. But unbeknownst to him, the police are the least of his worries, for enemies from Farrenheil have recently broken through to this world and will stop at nothing to see the prince dead.
Thankfully though, Daniel’s guardians are also on the move. New York City cop Cal MacDonnell was a Knight Captain in his life before, sworn to protect the prince. Together with his wife Cat and wizards Seth Raincrest and Lelani the centaur, they’re following a trail of clues trying to find Daniel first. Around the country, Cal’s allies are also being gathered by his second-in-command Malcolm, a dwarven metalsmith who has considerable pull in this world as CEO of a major defense company. Among the awakened guardians are some of the new key characters like Allyn, a cleric from Aandor who has found a similar calling in this new life as a reverend; Tim, a bard who has also put his past skills to good use by becoming a famous rock musician; and Balzac, a court jester who has come to pursue a less ostentatious career in this world as a college professor. And so, with the party assembled, they all must come up with a plan to rescue Daniel and complete their mission.
As you can probably tell from the story’s description, this sequel greatly expands the world of the series, adding more characters, more background lore, and even more incredible new developments in this already complex plot. This book hits the ground running, now that the board has been set and all the pieces are in place. With all the confusion of the previous foundation-establishing novel behind us now, there is a strong sense that we are ready to roll, and the atmosphere of urgency and desperation in the first few chapters seem to back this up. And indeed, having all these characters running around doing their own thing means that we get to cover a lot of ground in this book, zipping from one place to the next before events culminate in New York City for the final showdown. As a result, scene transitions and perspective switches were frequent and plentiful, especially since the author also gave the villains of this story a larger focus in this sequel.
The main issue I found with this framework is the same one I commonly have with stories that are told through multiple POVs—that is, inevitably I found some characters more likeable and interesting to follow than others. Surprisingly, Cal, Cat, and Daniel were not among my favorites this time around, given how I’ve spent the most time with them so far, but I just found them very judgey and annoying in this sequel, from Cal’s mean-spirited treatment of Seth (even if the wizard did kind of deserve it) to Cat and Daniel’s snide uppity comments towards non-city folk. Instead, the chapters from supporting characters like Lelani continued to dominate my enjoyment, and I also loved Malcolm and Allyn. It seemed to me that the “new Aandorians” stole the show in this second round, perhaps overshadowing more prominent POVs like Cal, Seth, and Daniel with the novelty of their personalities and backgrounds. As such, the overall reading experience probably did not go as smoothly for me as it could have.
I also occasionally felt jarred by the writing, which felt awkward and strained in some sections. The term “more showing, less telling” came to mind often when it came to a few of the characters’ motivations, especially the main baddie Dorn, whose villainy was described to such a degree that it felt almost over-the-top and cartoonish. There were also a couple instances where the descriptions of graphic violence and sexual content became unexpectedly detailed, and while I took no issue with the content itself, I felt that the writing in these sections didn’t quite mesh with the rest of the book in terms of tone and style. There seemed to be more info-dumping this time too, though I wonder if that might be the result of having so many more characters in this book and the need to cover all their backstories briskly and efficiently.
In any case, I did have a good time with this sequel, and I continue to be impressed by the mix of epic and urban fantasy ideas found here. To keep things running smoothly, Lazellari has adopted a lot of simple and familiar genre tropes, relying on readers’ familiarity with them to generate interest. His true triumph and this series’ crowning achievement, however, is the blending of all these different and contrasting elements to create a cohesive, imaginative and engaging premise. I couldn’t help but be drawn into this saga, especially with all the human drama. Will the triangle of Cat, Cal, and his relationship with his betrothed Chryslantha somehow sort itself out? Will Daniel fulfill his destiny and be a worthy prince? Will we ever get to see Aandor? All these questions and more need answering, and I look forward to finding out how everything will play out in the last book of the trilogy.
This was a great sequel, and probably would have gotten a full rave review from me if not for the very strong sexual content involving a 13-year old. Even if the kid doesn't act like like one, in the story he still is one. If you've read the first in the series, this is a direct pick-up from the end of it and does a really good job of upping the stakes while everyone, good and bad alike, are trying to find the prince of Aandor before anyone else. Lots of great story here. Excited to see where it all goes in the next installment. Hope it doesn't take as long to get to us though. :)
Way more entertaining than the first what a ride I loved it its what I look for in urban fantasy the final battle was beyond epic and the characters were more fleshed out and developed. This is what a sequel should be I hope the last one is coming soon.
Aside from my constant annoyance at yet another *and *ond fantasy kingdom name, and a very tell not show approach to the marriage of Cat and Cal as well as Cal's relationship with his betrothed, the kitchen sink of alternate world/fantasy game tropes is pretty well blended and ultimately works as it's own thing - though it does end up feeling over-packed with alternative agendas.
An improvement on Book 1, this sequel is full of what Mr. Lazellari does best: scenes of people being people (even those pesky non-humans).
I really enjoyed seeing Seth's transformation over the course of this novel. Daniel's tentative acceptance of his role brings out his leadership qualities, but he still comes across as a teen just trying to roll with the punches. Even the bad guy's henchmen are well-rounded characters. I was saddened to see Cal's slow emotional collapse into an inflexible ass.
While in "Awakenings" I couldn't bring myself to care about Aandor, in "The Lost Prince" I started to wonder how things would play out with the characters if/when they got back to that realm.
Now on to the not so good stuff: again we have a disappointing ending, but for different reasons than the first book.
In spite of the problems I have with the ending bits, I still enjoyed this book and will be reading the next when it is available.
Lazellari's engaging series continues with the solid addition of The Lost Prince. Tension gets higher in this sequel as the race to find the missing prince begins in earnest. Dorn's sanity wanes the longer he remains in this world, and he is at the end of his patience, willing to risk forbidden magic in order to turn the tide.
The guardians have been living their own lives for these past thirteen years, and not everyone is able to drop what they were doing to run to their prince's aid. This adds a desperate realism to the conflict, as the guardians are torn by two lives, two sets of memories, and opposing loyalties.
Daniel's story continues in a coming of age YA narrative, but even he can't avoid the forces that have been hunting him. The one moment I had problems with was how quickly Daniel accepted his role of importance to the guardians. I am glad he wasn't super resistant, or constantly bemoaning his fate, but he adjusted to his new role extremely quickly.
This book wrapped up the beginning conflict, but has left plenty of room for more, as the guardians can't return home until Daniel is of age to take over the throne. This leaves three years where all manner of things could go wrong, let alone the decisions the guardians will have to make: take their new families to their home universe, or abandon it forever to stay in this one.
Lazellari has me completely hooked on this series, and I'm almost sad I read this so quickly. The wait time for the next book is going to be torture!
The Lost Prince continues, and ratchets up, the action begun in Awakenings. You have to get through the first third of the book, which has a lot of set up and introduces several new characters, before it kicks into high gear, but the Butcher-esque high octane payoff is worth it. Although Lost Prince is the second book in the series, it has a more solid ending than its predecessor; more like Harry Potters 4 or 5 than Game of Thrones (no cliffhangers, but lots of promise of future tales). This little book (not so little really at 500+ pages) satisfies my fantasy adventure fix. I find Lazellari’s writing reminiscent of older Stephen King books like The Stand or The Talisman. He can take a hard to like character like Seth Raincrest and somehow, as in the character’s arc in Awakenings, actually have you sympathizing with him by story’s end. Fair warning to moms (like me) who have young kids that ask to read their books--there is one scene (only one) where two teenagers have intimate relations for all the wrong reasons, but again, Lazellari is not afraid to challenge convention by staying away from something safe. He deftly draws, through subtleties in the teens’ psychology, what might easily become tawdry or pointless in other novels, moments of character building and sentimental poignancy. Still, I would make the cut-off age for this book 16 since it also has violence and other adult themes that may not be suitable for tweens.
This book blew me away. What a great, great, great read. I love fantasy. I love stories where the land of magic bleeds into our modern world and carves away the day to day boredom we all sometimes feel. That you could turn a corner, you could find a box, you could look at a picture, you could pick up a book and the world suddenly expands and you are something more than you ever were before. You are part of two worlds. You are walking the streets of New York and the around the corner there is the Magic and rich Land of Aandor.
This book merges the fantastic and the human with such skill and charm I couldn't put it down. The characters have flaws and dreams and even the "villains" are drawn with many colors and lots of dimension to them.
You like Zelazny and Amber? You like Gaiman and Neverwhere? You like Stephen King and the Dark Tower?
Open up Lazellari's Guardians of Aandor series and take a walk in this world with him and his colorful crew. You won't be able to put the book down.
I really enjoyed reading this book. Malcolm, and Scott were my favorite characters. The Jester was interesting. I really liked reading about him because he reminded me of the Shakespearean Jesters that I read about especially in the book Troilus and Criseyde, and King Lear. This book was not slow, and it sucked me in the moment I picked it up. The Epilogue just made me want to scream because I knew this no third book yet, and I really need to read the third book. Seth grew a lot in this book, and I really liked that because in the Awakening I really hated his character, but not this book. Cat, Cal's wife kind of pissed me off from time to time, but what she did to the villain made me respect her a little. This book is one of the best books I have ever read, and I cannot stress how much I cannot wait for the third book to come out.
Take our normal real life and turn it upside down with witches and a secret land of Aandor in current time in the United States. What started off slightly confusing with the various story lines and characters created one very interesting plot. I wish I should have read Awakenings by Edward Lazellari first to get more of a background on the characters and main story though I was able to pick up where I presume that novel left off.
Very well written book that kept me interested down to the very last page to see if Daniel would survive and what would happen to his guardians. I was surprised at a few twists at the end, but I am anxious to read the novel that should be created after this.
Magical Aandor characters in current United States of America all looking for one special boy who has gotten into trouble of his own is one fantastic read! Magical, Captivating and Thrilling!
... Perhaps what impressed me most about this book was how well Lazellari blends fantasy and reality. Our world is still our world, but he weaves in the promise of something more so realistically that the reader can’t help but wondering, “What if?” This, combined with his realistic, engaging characters, really makes The Lost Prince is deliciously complex. Lazellari keeps things interesting, and the ending is a perfect culmination of adventure, action, and growth. Furthermore, his blend of answered questions, while posing the right amount of riddles for future books to work through, leaves me wanting more.
I've always liked books that remind me in some way or ways of other books I've enjoyed in the past. The Lost Prince definitely reminds me of some of my favorite fantasy, but is different enough so it doesn't feel derivative of any particular book or series.
It's almost a cliche to say that book X is the love child of books A & B, but that doesn't do this justice. I think of this as more of a witches' brew of the Harry Dresden books, high fantasy like A. Merritt & Stephen R. Donaldson, comics like Hellboy, the movies Highlander and Ghostbusters, with a dash of Quentin Tarantino's ultraviolence thrown in for spice.
I thought it took the promise of the first novel and took it a step up. This takes seriously the premise of a group from a fantasy universe that entered our world, fleeing a military invasion of their kingdom. Time passes differently there than here -- here, 13 years have passed, while things have barely changed back home. And although misadventures have passed where they need to reunite with the now teenaged prince the party ostensibly serves, they have 13 years of life here to confront. Is their mission worthwhile?
Great fantasy! Enjoyed immensely & very hard to put down. I think it's even better it's predecessor Awakenings. I will be waiting for Lazellari's next book. I have read this and it's predecessor for the 2nd time and my opinion has not changed. It is now Aug. 30, 2015, and I am still waiting for the conclusion. Need some updates! Okay, 7/05/2017 - read again!
I'm torn about this one. The story is excellent, the battle scenes are top-notch, and I really like the character growth.
But the only scene I remember well about this one is a torture scene that was gruesome enough that I don't think I'll be following this series. We'll see if time changes my mind (it's been just three days since I finished the book).
I received a copy of this book in the goodreads giveaways. I really enjoyed this book. I liked the story very much of the young boy being hunted and trying to be saved by his guardians of another universe. Action packed and really keeps the reader wondering what is going to happen next.
This is a terrific follow-up to Lazellari's AWAKENINGS. Stay with it as it builds, because the payoff is satisfyingly spectacular, in a very cinematic way. Both books are fun reads, but this one has a more satisfying conclusion (even though there's a third book yet to come; looking forward to it!)
Written by Edward Lazellari, this novel picks up were Awakenings left off; our heroes of Aandor now all have their memories back, those that survived, and we have an expanded cast of characters.
This is definitely a book of growth for the characters, and I think this paints a better picture of just how different the entire groups lives have been. We get to meet far more characters in the first, and get to see real growth in our wizard, prince, and get to see the struggle of having to choose between loyalties.
I stand by that this is a very decent selection for fans of high fantasy or urban fantasy. Quick wit and terribly dark, this is a nitty-gritty read that was a page turner for me.
The writing is smooth and flowing and reads as if the first book and this one should have been one book (hint, hint). The other great thing is that the title does describe the shift in focus. Cal and gang are still very important, however we are getting a lot more of Daniel and who he is. And his experiences. And, you know, other spoiler reasons why it is a fitting title.
Who won’t like this novel? Those who are easily offended, who don’t like blood and other bodily fluid references, and those who don’t like long, drawn out adventures and mysteries.
Continuation where we have a typical dungeon crawler team of good guys (knight, cleric, mage, dwarf, etc.) racing a team of bad guys (half-giant, mage, half-troll, insane killer) across the modern USA in search of a lost prince. Battle culminates in a magic war in the middle of New York City.
The battle/action sequences are thrilling, among the best I've read. The stand off at the farm.... Wow really good. But 13 year old trailer park sex.... nope, no bueno. And there is some very gruesome torture that seemed a bit over the top and unneeded. And why the need to try to explain a cover up, post magic-battle? That threatened my suspension of disbelief. Hundreds killed in NYC, millions in damage and it's going to be swept under the rug by... hallucinations? Riots? Nope.. not buying it. And not really any need for it?
A clean enough close at the end here to walk away from the series for awhile.
Now knowing who the prince is, Cal and his band must find him before the others do. Stashing the kid in a safe place, Dredge tries to make a deal with Dorn but realizes Cal is the better option. Both sides find the prince and battle for him.
This was a good read. Cal has a lot of secrets he is hiding from Cat and, unfortunately, they are exposed. Cat becomes a pawn between the two groups. Betrayal rears its ugly head. Lives will change but how. Kept me on the edge of my seat. Cannot wait to read the next book.