01 May 2011
Ascension, Caris Roane
Ascension, by Caris Roane has an interesting story idea at its heart, and this Broad applauds the author's creativity in her nicely placed setting and insertion of 'ascended' dimensions as it added a fresh flavor to the vampire themed novel.
The chapters are introduced with poetic proverbs, using language rich in meaning, but that beauty of language is noticeably absent once within the chapters themselves. The 'ascended' beings of Roane's creation leave much to be desired. Bureaucratic injustice reigns on the fictitious 'Second Earth' as a handful of warriors battle the evil forces that seek to enslave and destroy the modern world. Under their 'Supreme Ascendiate', the warriors lose ground nightly. Enter Allison Wells, the most powerful human ever known to begin the process of ascension. Both sides want her loyalty, and the warrior Kerrick is charged with her safe keeping as she undergoes her transformation amid danger and drama.
It is not necessarily the romance that fails in Roane's novel. Allison is quite a likable character and Kerrick has all the right ingredients any good hero needs. Cringe worthy dialogue and a never ending stream of adolescent-like thoughts are the stakes which drain the life out of Ascension. Discussions between the warriors resemble something one might expect to hear from pubescent boys with utterances of, "Give," when answering a call to, "Can you spell 'reamed' ?", when describing an encounter with what is supposed to be a revered leader. Their leader, Endelle, is portrayed as a tactless, eccentric bitch who possesses great power, wielding it high-handedly over her loyal subjects while concurrently running her domain with gross incompetence, having to ask her newly ascended follower, "Who the hell are you?" Add in a local establishment awfully named 'The Blood And Bite' where ascended warriors drink heavily and the ever repeating mantras, "I can't deny the overwhelming attraction I feel," and "I can never allow myself to give in to my feelings," and you have Ascension in a nutshell.