My Book Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars Action Packed Read by
This review is from: The Rising (The Lost Children of Managrail) (Kindle Edition)

Aside from the continuous sequence of exciting adventures that The Rising offers, there is a very interesting portrayal of the relationship and differences between men and women. Do not expect any stereotypes, or you are likely to be disappointed. Following the lives of two sets of siblings this fantasy novel will not only uncover hidden secrets about the world that they live in, but it will also reveal truths about the real nature of men and women, and how that nature can change with the influence of others.

While it does contain a little romance and the odd touch of sexual politics, this novel is all about action. No one is afraid to get their hands dirty and it can even get quite gruesome at times. As you live through adventure after adventure, following Prince Simian trying to clean up the mess his sister makes, don’t be surprised if real life seems a little dull when you finish the book.

Reviewed by Elizabeth Wright on behalf of

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Fantastical World & Beautiful Characters!, July 26, 2012
This review is from: The Rising (The Lost Children of Managrail) (Kindle Edition)

Disclaimer: The fact that I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review has not affected my rating. This review expresses my honest opinion.

Note: Aron Joice has permission to republish my review in her marketing materials.

Judging based off the writing style, I probably started off by thinking The Rising was more of a happy-go-lucky and carefree book, with elements of a fairy tale-ish mix of middle grade and YA fantasy. Obviously, I was wrong – The Rising is not only much a more serious, detailed, and richer book, but also deals with much darker sides, symbols, and elements.

What was most intriguing in my opinion was Lila and her behavior. In one word, her emotions were intense, and I really felt for her. Even as a princess, she had to go through a lot, including her family’s losses, being kidnapped, feeling jealous over her own parent, and so much more. Her growth and sacrifices were extraordinary – I loved seeing her transformation from an ignorant, selfish girl into a more mature and experienced young woman. Her interactions with the demon were also interesting, but also conflicted, although sometimes I felt that I could understand her feelings of envy and feeling lost. I just hope that I’m the next book, Lila will finally be able to find fulfillment and happiness.

Simian was also a great character. Being forced to take his responsibilities seriously and having to protect his sister and kingdom. I also liked seeing his growth and admired his bravery, self sacrifices, and quick thinking. His thinking and willingness to sacrifice at the end (I don’t want to give away too much) was also admirable, as well as his loyalty to his kins and kingdom. Altogether, the characters in The Rising were magnificent, always demonstrating loyalty and bravery.

Without rambling too much, I’ll summarize by saying that pretty much all the characters were pretty well portrayed. I felt that there weren’t really any unnecessary characters and that each played an important part in the story. The plot and concept of the Light Bringers were also pretty interesting. There was lots of action, a pretty rich plot, and definitely enough to keep me entertained.

Overall, The Rising is a pretty solid and adventurous fantasy, with detailed characters and rich plot and fantasy elements. I highly recommend this for fantasy fans!

5.0 out of 5 stars This writer is on a par with J.K Rowling, January 23, 2013
This review is from: The Rising (The Lost Children of Managrail) (Kindle Edition)

The Rising (The Lost Children of Managrail)
As the book opens, a willful and headstrong Lila drags her twin brother Simian, into yet another of her adventures. The young Prince and Princess of Managrail have lived a cosseted and protected lifestyle; and are not prepared for life outside Managrail. They get lost and the Queen, when they do not return; sends her champion Bramon to find them. The twins spend a fretful night in the forest stalked by the Fergay. Who hunt at night in packs and devour any living thing in sight.
The Fergay communicate telepathically to each other and are skilled and vicious opponents from which, few escape. The twins meet Cayda and Medack, who have lost all their family and friends and become allies to save Managrail from attack from the Fergay. Just when the four friends think their lives can start again, Lila is kidnapped. A dark spirit has attached itself to Lila and Shantra a dark force is planning to use her to get the thing she desires most. Which are the sacred magical stones of Managrail. Shantra needs them, to escape the White Realm where she has been banished to many years ago.
Simian must join force with Arilya the Queen of Lapis and all the other magical tribes, to defeat the evil sorceress Shantra. He must be prepared for the fight of his life and to kill his own beloved sister Lila, if necessary. I found this author’s imagination captured me and lifted me effortlessly into another world. I could see this book as a fantasy film for children and adults alike and it was a pleasure to review it. Aron Joice, I believe, has the a skillful imagination, on a par with writers such as Lewis Carroll (Alice in Wonderland) J.K Rowling (Harry Potter).


5.0 out of 5 stars Compelling story full of magic, intrigue, and devotion, March 26, 2013
This review is from: The Rising (The Lost Children of Managrail) (Kindle Edition)

I absolutely love this book. The story of the Managrailian’s is one of love, strength, struggle, adversity, and triumph. Ms. Joice’s writing style is rich and I find myself so anxious to read the next words, my reading speed has increased. The author has just the right balance of detail without putting a bunch of descriptive frou-frou in that slows the reading, and the story, down. Some authors use lots of words to paint the scenic picture, and I get lost and bored in their detail. Ms. Joice chooses just the right words and not lots of them. Quality not quantity. The result, I have a beautiful image in my mind of how everyone and everything looks.

Ms. Joice has created beautiful characters and places. The storyline is fanciful and fascinating. There’s good character development. I was upset when one of the key characters was killed off, but I see it was necessary to the story. I’ll confess I keep waiting for her to somehow be reincarnated, after all, this is a world of magic. I’m emotionally connected with the characters and that, to me, is the sign of good writing.


3.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Action, But, Too Many Characters, April 7, 2013
This review is from: The Rising (The Lost Children of Managrail) (Kindle Edition)

Aron Joice’s The Rising: The Lost Children of Managrail, Book One, is a fantasy that is chock full of adventure. When the twins, Lila and Simian of Managrail, fall from the heights upon which their city is located, and find themselves lost in the forest inhabited by the night-prowling, flesh-eating Fergay, they set in motion an epic struggle between and among powerful forces that threaten to overwhelm them and destroy their way of life.
The impetuous Lila becomes central to all that transpires, despite her more mature brother’s every efforts. They are soon joined by Medack and Cayda, who are hunting the marauders who destroyed their village of Dirth and slaughtered all their kith and kin.
The action in The Rising is non-stop, with a combination of sword and sorcery that is sure to please fans of the genre. Despite some excellent writing, the story is somewhat marred by the introduction of too many characters without ample description of their origins or motives. A good story would rise to greatness if the reader had a better understanding of the interrelations of the various factions as they move inexorably to a showdown after Managrail is destroyed by the Fergay.
While I found the book enjoyable, I’m giving it only three stars because of this. Joice is an excellent craftsman when it comes to dialogue, but needs to give more background to help one navigate through the intricacies of her tale.


5.0 out of 5 stars A refreshingly fun fantasy read June 30, 2014

By Brian Beam

Format:Kindle Edition |Verified Purchase

The Rising, the first volume in Aron Joice’s Lost Children of Managrail series, is a wonderful and exciting fantasy adventure. This book is primarily aimed towards the young adult audience, though I found it a great read as an adult in my thirties.

The main story centers around Simian and his twin sister Lila, children of the current Queen and late King of Managrail, a beautiful city that has seen peace for many years. Lila has coaxed Simian in taking a trip to the nearby cliffs, an action that sees them lost and leads to the waking of the Fergay, evil beasts of legend bent on slaughtering humanity. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Throw in a few side plots and an overall epic war ever looming in the distance, and you start to see the epic scope of what Joice intends to develop in this series.

This book is brimming with characters, each with clearly defined motivations and personalities. The world Joice has created is refreshingly imaginative, and the plot contains enough twists and turns to keep the reader on their toes. Who I thought would be the main villain turned out to be nothing compared to the threat that faces the world by the end of the book.

It speaks volumes about Joice’s writing that her words bring Managrail and the surrounding world and its inhabitants to vivid life without ever burdening the reader with pages and pages of detail. She skillfully paints a picture while allowing the perfect amount of empty space for the reader to fill in the blanks. With so many fantasy books being bogged down by excessive detail, this is truly a breath of fresh air.

I do have to admit that it took me a while to get into the story, though. For the first few chapters, every couple pages sees the story switching to a new character or scenario. For me, this acted as a barrier in connecting with the characters in the beginning. I learned so little about them in the few pages they have at any given time, that it made it difficult for me to actually care about any of the characters. After those first few chapters, however, the scene/character jumping was drastically reduced, allowing me to get to know the characters enough to care what happened to them next.

Whether you’re a younger or older reader, you’ll find something to love about The Rising if you love fantasy. The story flows well, making this a fairly quick, enjoyable read.

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