Seven years have passed since the Septimus Heap series and a new Orm Egg has been stolen by the devious Oraton-Marr, who awaits the Orm’s hatching. Spit Fyre watches and waits, monitoring the progress of the Orm Egg. Young Kaznim, elder daughter of the people of the Singing Sands’ Apothecary, has vanished with her healing tortoise and the precious Egg Timer. And it’s ninety-six hours until the Orm Egg is due to hatch. When Kaznim appears on the doorstep of the Wizard Tower, it unleashes a chain of events as the Egg Timer counts down. In order for the proper parties—the infamous Septimus Heap and Spit Fyre—to Imprint on the hatchling Orm, Tod, the Pathfinder, must guide Kaznim back home to the Singing Sands before it’s too late.
SandRider is a sweeping fantasy of epic proportions. Stunning imagery brings the world to life on every page. Well thought out details add personality to every aspect adding richness to the setting and characters. Everything from articles of clothing to speech patterns make SandRider sublimely grand.
The various characters are a tremendous joy to see come together. Young Kaznim is unsure of the strange world around her yet driven to save her little sister and rejoin her mother. Our heroine, Tod, is spectacular in her strength and vulnerability. She knows she must do the right thing, even if the right thing goes against all she knows about being the ExtraOrdinary Apprentice. When Tod joins forces once again with her friends, Oskar and Ferdie, the Tribe of Three cannot be stopped. Kaznim, though a child, knows she should trust the Tribe of Three, but fear over her sister’s safety traps her in a web of lies.
Much like other epic fantasies, SandRider has a slow-building pace that I would not recommend for readers who prefer faster pace reads. If languid tales that unfold through love of the written word, then you’re sure to enjoy SandRider. The writing has a beautifully grand quality that will make any word nerd sigh with delight.
The writing style may take a newbie a little getting used to. Written in a “God’s Eye” style of third person omniscient, SandRider does not rely on any one narrator, but jumps to various points of view throughout the entire book. It can be very confusing if you’re not accustomed to this style.
SandRider is a must-have for readers of epic fantasies. If you loved the original Septimus Heap series, then it’s a no-brainer. You must get this next installment. Angie Sage continues Tod’s journey with another tale full of heart, hope, fear, strength, and trust in strong friendships with SandRider.