Monday, June 18, 2012
REVIEW: Antiquitas Lost: The Last of the Shamalans by Robert Louis Smith
Publishing information: eBook
Publisher: Medlock Publishing
ISBN 10: 061546047X
ISBN 13: 9780615460475
Copy: Free from publisher
Synopsis: "Antiquitas Lost tells the story of a boy named Elliott, a lonesome kid with deformities on his hands and feet, who is uprooted from his home after his mother falls gravely ill. When they move to New Orleans so his grandfather can help care for her, Elliott learns that the old man’s eighteenth century mansion hides an ancient secret. While checking out some eerie paintings and strange relics in the basement, Elliott strays through an ancient doorway into a tumultuous parallel world, full of bizarre creatures and warring races. He has stumbled into Pangrelor, the most ancient of all worlds and “mother to all the stars in the sky.” As he learns to navigate his new surroundings, he discovers wondrous abilities he never dreamed he possessed, and an abiding connection to the primitive, alien world that will forever change him. But he must proceed carefully. For he soon learns that his actions in the ancient world will impact the upcoming battle for Harwelden, Pangrelor’s greatest civilization, and will also resonate all the way back to New Orleans, perhaps deciding whether his own mother lives or dies."
A while ago I was asked to review Antiquitas Lost and I have finally got around to reading it. Sadly, it is not worth reading. I know a lot of other people have enjoyed it but I am just not one of them.
The novel is young adult and perhaps that is why I had difficulty finding much to enjoy as it seemed geared towards a much younger audience than myself. Elliott discovers a lost world and through this new found land lies the key to saving his mother from a mysterious illness. It has a Harry Potter meets C.S. Lewis feel to it without the magic from either book.
Elliott was not a very interesting character and I had a lot of difficulty rooting for him as the story progressed. He just did not exhibit any appeal or charisma. Even his friends that we meet along the way in the book felt very two dimensional.
The story also did not have a lot going for it, as it all seemed very paint-by-numbers storytelling. While I am sure that there will be plenty of children and young adults that will enjoy this story, I am not one of them. I did not have a lot of fun reading this book and it happened within a few pages. The build up to the mystery was quite good but then when Elliott's quest and destiny are rdvealed to him, the book started to unravel for me. there were no surprises.
As I stated before, children may love this book, but I found myself dreading each and every new page I read. The only real treat were the illustrations that can be found throughout the book. I just can not recommend this book.