Jarrak's Darkness by Colin R Parsons (Wizards' Kingdom: Book 3)

Jarrak's Darkness by Colin R Parsons is the third and final instalment in Colin R Parson's Wizards' Kingdom trilogy.

The Obelisk of Ashmar is crumbling and Jarrak, the evil Catchet, has been defeated. Yet in his dying moments, he cast a wicked spell on Loof, brainwashing him into attacking Wizards' Kingdom. Accompanied by Evilan and a vicious army of Kites and Seekers, Loof marches towards Spellock Castle.

King Zendal, with the help of the wizards Crasmont and Mydar and his faithful stallion Shim, must set out after them and fight his enemies one last time.

Struggling across a landscape plunged into perpetual winter; the wizards encounter life-threatening peril and the hostile Demonites.

Only their faith in each other can give them enough strength to face the final destiny. Without this, Loof's evil reign will overwhelm Wizards' Kingdom forever!

The first chapter of Jarrak's Darkness alerted me to the fact that something had subtly changed from the previous two instalments in the series. The narrative had become more fluent; gone was the staccato approach and in its place was a more descriptive prose. The result of this change was a far more pleasurable read featuring characters with more life and, most importantly, a story that you can lose yourself within. The humour also benefits from better delivery and timing.
The land is gripped in a never-ending winter and this is of course reminiscent of Narnia in The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe. There is something perfect about an icy, cold setting that suits fantasy down to the ground – there is nothing better than reading about characters who are freezing whilst you are safe and warm at home – it makes the reading experience all the more pleasurable.

“Overhead, the broad arms of the branches interlocked, forming a great natural roof, which acted as a solid barrier that the winter conditions could not penetrate. The ground was hard and dry and each wizard groped along helplessly. Zendal shuddered as he felt the hot steam from the stallion's nostrils billowing over his right shoulder.”
Jarrak's Darkness: Whispers 

A special mention must go to Derek Jones for making such a fine job of illustrating the Wizards' Kingdom book covers; Jarrak's Kingdom is once again visually very appealing.

The three books that make up the Wizards' Kingdom Trilogy are Wizards' Kingdom, The Obelisk of Ashmar and Jarrak's Darkness – together they form a very enjoyable and appealing series for older children and young adults. It is to be hoped that books such as these will not only get more children reading but also keep them reading as they go on to discover and read the works of CS Lewis, JRR Tolkien, Robin Hobb, Steven Erikson and many more.

The Wizards' Kingdom series is ideal for those with a good imagination and a thirst for excitement.

7/10 A story that you can lose yourself within.

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