Book of Names : Casters of Syndrial

  • by Rain Oxford
  • Narrated by J. Scott Bennett
  • Series: Casters of Syndrial
  • 10 hrs and 36 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Nathan, who has been plagued with a strange and dangerous curse since he can remember, just wants a normal life. His brother, Luca, wants nothing to do with normal. When they fall through a portal and end up on a foreign world with magic, monsters, and gods, Nathan realizes that normal is relative.
In a world where names are power, a book has been stolen that can destroy more than just Syndrial. Being safe from the book puts him in the path of two powerful forces, both of which have no problem using his brother against him. To protect Luca and get home alive, Nathan will have to master magic, find the Book of Names, and defeat a devastating enemy.


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Denial is just a river in Egypt.

Nathan and his younger adoptive brother are very close. With the only parents they ever knew both dead, Nathan protects Luca whilst Luca just tries to make his brother happy. Both are students, and though Luca has an interest, it seems, in just about everything often switching courses, Nathan wants to write books, be an author. But he has felt cursed for almost as long as he can remember, bad things happening not to him but to the people close to him. On the way home one evening the brothers see graffiti painted on the ground at the entrance to a lane they were about to enter, then, stepping into it, everything changes and they fall into a different place, a different world, one where magic and gods exist in everyday life. And Nathan's life is forever changed.

Book of Names is an extremely well written story, often very humerous (especially in the first half), with excellent main protagonist characterisation and conversation. It is a gentle mystery and thriller with unexpected twists and the world building is visual. Yes, there's magic as Nathan learns of his potential and starts training to control the powers he never previously knew that he had. But it is far more than a story of Wizard's and spells, it is about relationships, perception and trust.

As always, J.Scott Bennett's narration is excellent,. his perfectly paced reading expressing the wonderment and terrors inherent in the story. He is the voice of the often bemused Nathan, whose love for his brother is paramount. All characters are distinctly and subtly voiced, also, and his performance overall greatly adds to the enjoyment of the book.

I am rarely a fan of fantasy and magic, but this one is special for this reader. Combined with the empathy instilled for the two transported brothers, and Nathan in particular, there is also a shifting of perceptions, a re-evaluation of the character of others and the consideration in basic form, of what constitutes right or wrong, good and evil, or are these "only differences of opinions"? Simply written, easy to read, this is a book I am happy to recommend to anyone.
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- Norma Miles

Waiting on the next book!

Would you listen to Book of Names again? Why?

Yes. Probably as a refresher once the rest in the series are released.

What did you like about the performance? What did you dislike?

Was a nice performance, although the narrator didn’t distinguish between a lot of the characters as well as some other narrators I’ve come across.

Any additional comments?

This is an unbiased review of a free review copy. I can’t wait for the rest of the series to come and was disappointed when I got to the end to realise there wasn’t yet a follow on.

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- J Smith

Book Details

  • Release Date: 14-12-2017
  • Publisher: Rain Oxford