Matthew Wolf is a young and ambitious writer whom I consider to be, similar to the legends is his book, the long lost hero of the self-publishing world and dare I say the SFF community. Matthew started writing the Ronin saga when he was in high school and through hard work and determination he created one of the genre’s forgotten beauties. Published primarily through Kickstarter campaigns, Matthew has released 3 books, authorized 2 audio books narrated by the famous Tim Gerard Reynolds, and is currently launching Book 4 of the Ronin Sage Tides of Fate – I will leave a link for that at the end of the review. Matthew is very interactive and friendly with his fans and I wanted to return the favor by telling everyone about the mysterious land of Farhaven.
Long ago their were nine legendary beings known as the Ronin, each wielding an elemental power of: wind, water, fire, sun, stone, forest, moon, flesh, and metal. Once thought of as heroes, the world quivers at the sound of their names as they are believe to have almost destroyed the world. Nothing more than an whisper on the wind, the Ronin have been driven to extinction and believed long dead. The twelve kingdoms are preparing for war as rumors as rumors or ancient evil are rising and the Ronin are slowly starting to return to Farhaven, but which side will they fall on?
This story follows several POV characters, but primarily revolves around Gray, a teenager with no memory of his past and haunted by the nightmares of a past life long since forgotten. When strange creatures attack his home, Gray discovers that he possess the elite skills of the devari and has heightened senses and powers to fight of the enemies. With nothing but questions, Gray must go on a journey throughout Farhaven looking for answers to his past and his strange new powers. Gray eventually comes into contact with the Ronin and his life is changed forever.
Farhaven is made up of twelve kingdoms, nine of them containing the elements of the Ronin incorporated into the city. An example of this is the city of Sun that contains buildings and structures made of glass, reflecting the rays of the Sun to illuminate the surrounding area. The Knife’s Edge does contain some typical fantasy troupes, but Matthew embraces the tradition and incorporates his own unique spin to the story. The story flows seamlessly from chapter to chapter and will keep you guessing what will come next. The worldbuilding and oral histories Matthew pours onto the page are what make his work soar to new heights. Combined with his mysterious plot, unexpected twists, and excellent pacing I flew through the story and immediately picked up book two!
I have grown to love the Ronin saga and eagerly await the release of Book 4. Matthew Wolf has crafted a world that is unique, wonderous, and magical with characters that will stay with you for a long time. Fans of Michael J. Sullivan’s Riyira novels will love the Ronin Saga and all it has to offer. I hope you will support Matthew Wolf work, as you will be glad you did!