Eye of Obscurance by Jeffrey L. Kohanek review

Eye of Obscurance by Jeffrey L. Kohanek

Today, as part of Eye of Obscurance‘s Book Blitz, organized by Storytellers On Tour, we are reposting Jen’s review of Jeffrey L. Kohanek‘s Epic Fantasy novel, the first in the Fate of Wizardoms series. Be sure to check out the giveaway at the bottom of this review.

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About the Book
Series:  Fate of Wizardoms #1Genre: YA Epic Fantasy
Date of Publishing: October 1st, 2019Trigger warnings: –
Page count: 300Publisher: Self-Published
Book Blurb
Eye of Obscurance by Jeffrey L. Kohanek

A rollicking adventure: Can a quick-witted thief assassinate an almighty wizard lord?

Power. The ambitious thirst for it.

In a realm where wizards rule, those able to claim a throne are granted the power of a god.

How can one defeat a god?

A clever thief, a determined acrobat, and a troubled dwarf are joined by an old storyteller as they attempt the impossible: Assassinate a wizard lord. Their slim hope relies on an enchanted amulet, the Eye of Obscurance.

These unwitting pawns are embroiled in a contest of wizards. The stakes: The fate of the world.

From bestselling author Jeffrey L. Kohanek comes the first novel in an epic fantasy saga where magic reigns, wizards scheme for power, and the world teeters on the edge of breaking, perfect for readers who enjoy Patrick Rothfuss, Brandon Sanderson, or Robert Jordan.Download and prepare for a spectacular, thrilling adventure.

Quote of the Book
Quote Background

“This will be mine,” Eldalain said in a hushed voice.

Narine turned and found him standing beside her. “What?”

“I have put in the time, developed my talent, and have become the second most powerful wizard in Ghealdor. I have acted as his errand boy and have done what needed doing. I will not throw everything aside so you can ascend the throne.”

She furrowed her brows. “What makes you think I want to rule?”

“Why else attend the University?”

“I did it to be an asset to Father.”

“Please.” Eldalain’s voice was thick with disdain. “I am no fool. Spare me your self-righteous rhetoric.”

“Not everyone seeks power, Eldalain.”

“Wrong,” he retorted. “Not everyone acknowledges it. Some might deny it of themselves, like a martyr, but they are fools.” He turned toward her, his dark eyes boring into her as if examining her soul. “He has grown old, his power finally waning. Of those who might challenge me for the throne, only you remain. Think on that before you lay any plans.”

The man spun on his heel and walked away, leaving Narine with a deeply disturbing realization.

It was him. He killed his own siblings to guarantee his position.”

Song of the Book

I had a hell of a time finding a song for this one. It needed something upbeat and catchy, I almost went with Billy Eilish‘s Bad Guy but the lyrics were all wrong. This fits a little better at least the tone is right (though Rhoa’s heart is probably closer to charcoal grey).

5 Seconds of SummerJet Black Heart


When the amulet Jace is after is stolen out from under his nose by Rhoa, his failure lands him on the road hoping to recover the stolen property and clear up his contract with the Whispering Man. This leads to an alliance that works for both Jace and Rhoa to achieve their goals: Jace, to clear up his debts and Rhoa, to kill the wizard that destroyed her family – the fact he is practically unkillable hasn’t deterred her plans at all.

I’ve read the Wardens of Issalia series by this author and Wizardoms looks to be similar in style and is off to a great start; it’s an exciting, fast-paced popcorn read. This one is geared a little older – though I’d say (at this point) that it would be fine for the YA/NA crowd and I didn’t find any of the content to be too “adult only” (there is some hints of sacrificial content of children but none on-screen and nothing worse than you’d find in any other YA books, like the Hunger Games).

Eye of Obscurance has an interesting magic set-up.

Malvorian Ikorr – the head honcho wizard is basically at God status, his gifted power is fed by the people’s prayers. In fact, the only way to achieve higher status than what he is now, is to obtain the Eye of Obscurance.

Malvorian can connect to the magic with the throne (if I am understanding correctly – this kind of reminded me of the chair in Atlantis the way the cities magic was connected to the gene’d-user), and the eight great cities and ruling wizards are linked through their obelisks to the main stone which feeds the throne like a giant static ball/lightning rod.

The daily devotion feeds the wizards obelisks’ power, passing it from one to the next until it reaches its head, overseen by Malavorian (this also severely hampers the wizards as it ties them to their city, if they want to have their power at its peak). That magical strength wanes as the day proceeds into the next devotion and like a drug, the wizards are consumed with the ecstasy and power they get from the hit but it fades having them long for more.

Twice a year at the eclipse depending on the moon, there is a lottery held and the winners are chosen to sacrifice themselves to their God (whole families are taken so there are no kids left behind to go hungry or seek revenge) this actually makes a bit of sense in a screwed-up way and I thought this was quite generous of the rulers to be so thoughtful as to not leave any poor kids parentless.

Like with Wardens there is a large and undoubtedly ever-growing cast of characters. Jace and Rhoa are joined by Rawk (a Maker who can shape rock) and Salvon (the gifted storyteller and mentor of sorts to Rhoa) as they journey to Fastella and their common goal.

Jeffrey L. Kohanek has a knack for giving them fun personalities and lots of humorous interactions with one another. This is popcorn so it’s light on some of the rounding out of the characters – we do see clear motivations but occasionally there is a leap to get us from point a to b in the story, that’s ok too because this is unapologetically fun and isn’t trying to be anything else.

Other notes

Pet peeve alert – you all might know me and my dislike of overlapping POV scenes. We do get a few of these but only one earned my complete irritation and was a whole scene repeated. The other two were scene/time placers and weren’t full-sided and therefore acceptable in my books.

I was kind of sad at how little thought towards the others Rhoa had after/during her decision to head off with Jace to Fastella (I’m deliberately trying to be vague because of spoilers). This is a place where the leap maybe could have had more impact to her emotionally but that’s just my opinion.

I loved the Troupe performance which was this world’s version of the Barnum and Bailey Circus, for those of you old enough to have had the opportunity to go to a circus before they became Vegas shows (minus the elephants). Great job on capturing the spirit of the trapeze acts.

TLDR: Fun-packed action and a neat magic setup. I’m pretty curious to see how this series plays out.

Our Judgement
Let Their Deeds Be Noted - 4 Crowns
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