The fantasy genre is so full of subgenres these days that it is hard to find a good old-fashioned epic fantasy. That is exactly what Kate Bloom delivers in her first installment of The Legend of the Dwarf, The Beginning.
Not even born yet when her home was destroyed by the evil Terrisino, Ever Trollkiller is the youngest dwarf left in the Earth of Eald. As what is left of her people try to survive and repopulate, Ever cannot help but wonder what her home was like. When she meets an elf while hunting, Ever makes a rash decision - she will enlist his help in journeying to her homeland and then stopping Terrisino once and for all. Along the way, their ragtag crew grows. The more people they meet, the more Ever learns about herself and the secret that she is.
The Beginning is by no means perfect, with some stilted exposition popping up here and there and easy to spot twists, but by and large, Bloom's writing is highly engaging and wholly fun. It is easy to fall right into the story and let the pages fly by, something that does not always happen with lengthier epic fantasies. The Beginning is truly just the beginning of The Legend of the Dwarf. While still stopping in what feels like an appropriate spot, Kate Bloom leaves many questions unanswered and a subplot open, making the reader eagerly anticipate the next installment, The Birth.