Readers are Talking
A wild heart is destined to change the world *****
Green Stone of Healing is a fast-moving, complex fantasy series that follows four generations of strong women and the mysterious green stone that binds them to their people and culture as well as to each other. First in a series, The Vision nimbly covers the political, religious, and societal forces that converge in one person: Helen Andros. A very human heroine, Helen is trapped by forces from within as well as without. She struggles to understand who she is and her fate, while impacting nearly everyone around her. Her desires and best intentions often run afoul of her temper and her fierce stubbornness not to conform.
Snared in other people's webs of fear, deceit and power-grabbing, she becomes the loci of negative attention from the priests, rulers and military officers of her society. The Green Stone of Healing is destined to change her entire society, not just Helen.
Some readers will relate to her wild, compassionate heart and struggle to realize her destiny while keeping body and soul intact. Others will appreciate the fast action, complex political machinations and sometimes shocking violence of a society on the edge of implosion. There's magic woven in with the mundane realities. The author explores the concept of grand human cycles as represented by the multi-generational nature of the series and the reincarnation of the primary characters.
As a journalist and professional writer, Talmadge knows how to tell a story. This first book will hook you for the others to follow.
Cynthia G Stine
Great Writing *****
This is an intriguing book, and one showing considerable imagination. The plot lines maintained my interest throughout. The story never dragged and that is quite an achievement Not many authors nor books can lay claim to that. I quickly lose interest when I continually have to uncross my eyes. That never, ever happened with "Visions". The author weaves a tale of moral fortitude,disturbing venality, hints of past wars and portents of future strife. Sexual aspects and tensions are appropriately presented as undertones, but do not go unnoticed. The setting is somewhat futuristic and is cleverly presented what with skimmer and rotor vehicles. The author allows the reader to make what we will with this aspect of the story. This is a good way to do this. I strongly advise studying the Glossary first. I didn't and had to play catch up. The Glossary is very interesting in and of itself. It is further evidence of the imaginative scope of the book. The writing is excellent. It is very, very clearly written. This attribute cannot be overstated. I am sure I have read books as well written but none come to mind just now.
I am looking forward to an early release of the sequels and I hope they tie up some of the deliberate loose ends (hooks)left unaddressed. I heartily recommend "The Vision" to any thinking adult reader.
Robert H. Rooney
Engineering Manager, Retired
Fascinating! I expected it to be more story-driven. Instead, the characters are so real they bounce right off the page. I felt like I got to know them as actual people with their own thoughts and ideas. The author has a gift for making characters into flesh-and-blood people who stay on your mind. Looking forward with pleasure to Book Two.
A Fun Read ****
This first book in a projected multi-book saga introduces us to Helen Andros, a feisty and appealing military physician in a world ruled by malign reactionary theocrats and riven by racial distinctions -- a world vaguely reminiscent of the contemporary US of A. Lieutenant Andros goes through more trials, both literally and figuratively, than the perils of Pauline, and, while she doesn't always come out on top, she makes for good company, with an irrepressible, wise-cracking style that blends elements of heroines from film noir and screwball comedy. The writing is solid, and a glossary at the back of the book helps readers keep track of an extensive cast of characters which includes virtuous, conflicted heroes like Lord James and Lord Matthew and hissable villains like Prince Enoch. Despite the bleak world of Azgard conjured by the author, the book feels humanistic and warm, and its concluding vision (the vision of the title) whets reader interest in future installments.