path of decisions book coverReviewed by Caleb Shadis

The Path of Decisions is the second book in Mike Shelton’s series The Cremelino Prophecy. When I reviewed the first book, I pointed out how the story felt a little rushed, or almost abridged for a fantasy novel. I will say that this one has a lot more meat on its bones. It still is a very fast paced book for a fantasy and pretty lean, but I suspect there are many people who don’t like fantasy because of the bloat, and would really enjoy this series for being streamlined.

Darius is young, and filled with confidence after his success dealing with the the ‘invading’ army from the south. The King has summoned him back, and since the real reason for the summoning was not given to the messenger, he didn’t realize the urgency of the command. As a matter of fact, he resents being commanded home. So when he also hears about the troubles being stirred up by the Preacher and his ‘supposed’ army, he decides to take a detour on the way home and ‘deal’ with the upstart.

Christine snapped after her father died from the arson, and decided to take matters into her own hands. Since the town folk treated the people who grew their food with such disdain, then they obviously didn’t need to eat. She started raiding every wagon trying to deliver food–an angel of vengeance.

Kelln had a very trying time, first in the dungeons and then escaping, and escaping and escaping. He is a better friend than most of his friends deserve. Darius needs to learn humility, Christine needs to learn forgiveness, and the Kingdom needs to do a better job of keeping its prisoners locked up in the castle dungeons.

Overall, I think this is a good book. I didn’t like it at first but that is mostly because people who have an over inflated self worth and abuse their power drive me nuts. But that was thankfully reasonably short-lived in the book. I do feel the writing was good, and the characterization of our heroes was actually a very reasonable one for teenagers put into those positions.  They all had growing up to do and while the change of attitudes happened in an almost miraculously short period of time, it was well done and kept the story moving right along.

Caleb is a software engineer and amateur woodworker living in southern Minnesota. He has more hobbies than he has time or money for, and enjoys his quiet time reading.

Review copy was provided free of any obligation by Mike Shelton. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.