Over the Dragonwall, by H.C. Strom & Dennis Montoya: A Review

For young readers of fantasy whose interest will be in the plot and characters.

At the borders of the land called Delvingdeep lies the Dragonwall, and what lies beyond the Dragonwall is the stuff of legend. When the young monk Oberon (Obi) confesses to his Sovereign that he dreams of crossing that wall, not for gold or riches but to see a dragon, to add to the body of knowledge his order maintains, he is sent to do exactly that.

Obi and a band of friends and new acquaintances, including a half-elven brother and sister, decide to take a short-cut, and – well, this is fantasy, and we all know what happens when short-cuts are taken in fantasy. Suffice it to say that the results of that short-cut, and the ensuing adventures across the Dragonwall, make up the rest of the story.

What came to mind as I finished the book was the quote attributed to Mother Theresa  “Not all of us can do great things. But we can do small things with great love.” It sums up this book perfectly. It’s not a great book: the authors’ influences, from gaming to classic fantasy, are obvious – in some ways it’s a bit like fan fiction. The story is not complex. There are a number of production errors in the paperback copy I read. But it has clearly been written with great love, especially for the protagonist Obi.

I’d recommend Over the Dragonwall for young readers of fantasy whose interest will be in the plot and characters, and not in the literary quality of the writing. My review rubric gives Over the Dragonwall 2 1/2 stars, which is 3 stars on Amazon and Goodreads, and for what I believe is its target audience, I think that’s fair. Obi’s adventures will continue in a sequel, and I look forward to it; Obi has rather charmed himself into my heart.

The author provided me with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.


Author: marianlthorpe

Not content with two careers as a research scientist and an educator, Marian L Thorpe decided to go back to what she’d always wanted to do and be a writer. Author of the alternative world medieval series Empire’s Legacy, Marian also has published short stories and poetry. Her life-long interest in Roman and post-Roman European history informs her novels, while her avocations of landscape archaeology and birding provide background to her settings. As well as writing and editing professionally, Marian oversees Arboretum Press, a small publishing imprint run as a collective. Marian is currently writing Empire's Heir, the sixth title in the Empire's Legacy series.

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