Every generation has something that it identifies with – a fictional hero, a sporting icon or a cultural phenomenon. If the 1980s were identified with Sylvester Stallone and Rambo, the 1990s by Whitney Houston, the generation that came into its own in the 2000s, the Millennials, grew up reading Harry Potter, the Boy Wizard.
What about the post-millennial generation, the one that was born on or after 2000? Who are their heroes, the icons they hold on to, the books that they celebrate? There have been quite a few books that have competed for the limited attention span of this new generation of readers. The adventure fantasy series, The Night Angel Trilogy by Brent Weeks, did win its share of admirers. So did The Mortal Instruments, a series of 6 young adult fantasy novels written by Cassandra Clare, which propelled her to the top of the best sellers list.
But really, where is the next Lord of the Rings for the new generation of the readers? Where is the next Harry Potter, even? There are, for sure a bunch of books targeted at the young adult crowd, but none have aroused the sort of passion that Harry Potter did for young people growing up in the late 1990s and early 2000s.There is clearly a gap in the marketplace as book publishers continue their hunt for an era-defining book for the young readers of today.
Can Aaron McGowan’s Elpis be that book? Aaron is a 28-year old Australian writer who has certainly made a mark in the adventure fantasy genre with his Elpis series, which consists of two-full length books – Elpis and Haders.
Aaron’s debut novel Elpis has already reached #3 in Action & Adventure and #1 in the Sci-fi Graphic Novels charts on the Amazon, which is a commendable achievement indeed, for a young writer who’s just starting out. The two novels have met with tremendous success and have developed a major fan following among the young adult crowd.
Elpis is a classical good vs. evil story that pits a 16-year old hero, Terico, against the evil Delkol, the leader of the feared Brotherhood and the rule of the Shire Kingdom, who is in a desperate search for the mysterious Elpis Stone, which can give him the power of a God, the power to rule over all men. Delkol’s lust for power leads him to massacre everything that comes in his way, including Terico’s peaceful village of Edellerston.
It is from the depth of tragedy and hopelessness that Terico rises, vowing vengeance and begins his long journey to take on the forces of evil. Along the way, Terico makes friends and allies, and prepares for the final battle with Delkol – the man who took away everything that he held dead. Terico’s path is treacherous and there’s death and worse at every corner. But there’s magic too, as well as love, romance, friendship and laughter. So it’s not all about hate or bitterness, and a quest for revenge.
The battle scenes in Elpis are reminiscent of the epic Battle of the Hornburg at Helm’s Deep in the Lord of the Rings – The Two Towers. Author Aaron McGowan has a real talent for bringing the action sequences alive.
But what makes Elpis such a remarkable book is that every character, even the most minor ones have distinct personalities that is all their own. All major characters deal with dark internal struggles and are required make decisions that test their loyalty, friendships and question their deepest held beliefs.
There really isn’t a single dull moment in this epic adventure series. There are twists at every turn and surprises at every corner. There’s no telling which way a story arc would develop or what might happen to a beloved character. It’s just exciting, non-stop action from start to finish.
Aaron is certainly a very talented writer who is able to capture his readers’ attention from the first page, draw them into the magical fantasy world of Elpis and hold them spellbound for hours at a time. Apart from the Elpis and Haders novels, Aaron has written the popular manga style Sci-fi comic AslashD and is currently working on his as-yet untitled third novel.
Click here to buy Elpis by Aaron McGowan from Amazon.