Along the Watchtower has two plotlines - there is Freddie, the injured war veteran who's sent to recover (he has a lot of emotional pain holding him back). And then there's the Dauphin, a prince of a fantastical kingdom who has to undergo trials and prove himself worthy of being a king, if he fails, his kingdom perishes as well. The two storylines are linked because Freddie plays WoW, and he dreams of being the Dauphin.
I found this story to be really interesting. Freddie was a very well-crafted character, and I was rooting for him from the start. And in his side of the story, there are a whole host of interesting characters, which reminds me of Wilfred Owen's line that war is "the old lie" dulce et decorem est, pro patria mori (it is sweet and fitting to die for one's country). These veterans aren't dead, but they've lost so much, and they're comrades lost even more.
What felt slightly weaker by comparison was the fantasy side. I never did understand what the trials were. I only knew that they were over when the Dauphin mentioned the trial being over. And I still can't figure out how the last trial was overcome - I know love is involved, but not much else. I would have liked a bit more information for this side.
All in all, it's a really interesting read!
Disclaimer: I got a free copy of this book as part of a book tour in exchange for my free and honest opinion.
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