Book Review: Defenders of the Scroll by Shiraz | Alexia's Books and Such: Book Review: Defenders of the Scroll by Shiraz

“Books are for people who wish they were somewhere else.” ~ Mark Twain

Monday, December 7, 2009

Book Review: Defenders of the Scroll by Shiraz

Paperback: 264 pages
Publisher: iUniverse (June 29, 2009)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 144014477X
ISBN-13: 978-1440144776

Rating: 4/5
Source: The author

Book Blurb:
A teenage boy. A dark wizard. A mystic scroll. And the fate of a world hangs in the balance. . . When Alex "the Axeman" Logan is pulled from his world to help young princess Dara save her kingdom from the Shadow Lord, he thinks there has been a mistake. He's a teen guitar player close to failing 11th grade, not some defender of the realm. All he has are some school books, his wits, and his love of fantasy movies. Overnight his life is history. Alex must confront the Shadow Lord and his minions when he is thrust into a land that has changed from a magical paradise to a barren, hopeless, helpless realm invaded by a dark army. But Alex is not alone. He has the help of Dara, a magic scroll, and a band of unlikely companions drawn from his own history books: a hardened Roman Legionnaire, a swift Japanese Samurai, a mighty African Warrior, a fiery Amazon Archer, and a spirited Shaolin Monk. Can Alex become more than he believes and lead his small band of Defenders to the Hall of Shadows, the birthplace of the Shadow Lord? The fate of the realm and everyone in it rests on him.

My Review:
Wasn't really sure what to expect from this book, but have to say that I was pleasantly surprised. Princess Dara is just a little girl whose father just started training her in magic, so it's understandable that she accidentally summons the wrong "Axeman" as her protector. And Alex is just a teenager who soon finds out that this wild adventure is all too real. But I love how all those hours spent watching movies and playing video games pay off when Alex is able to predict what should happen next, and is usually right!

The teenage warriors they summon from one of his books are also amazing! While they are all heroes and mighty warriors, they are also still teenagers and I liked how Shiraz made them vulnerable at times. Enjoyed how they all picked up some of Alex's slang, as it's not every day a magical princess says "crap." *L*

I enjoyed Alex's struggle to survive his adventure and prove himself in a world surrounded by heroes. Liked how the warriors all learned to work together and started to become friends. Even liked the evil villains, as sometimes the bad guys can be disappointing, but not in this case! Thought the ending was a little abrupt, but looking forward to the second book so I can find out what happens next!

Gave this a 4/5 rating, as the story was enjoyable, the writing was very readable, it had likable characters, and I particularly liked that the pages looked like a scroll, which I thought was a nice touch.


  1. I enjoyed this book. It was classic Good vs. Evil for me. I'm excited that you liked it as well.

  2. This one looks interesting and exciting. I love reading books with Far East cultural aspects. Is it YA?

  3. Ryan - Glad to know you liked it as well! Loved how Alex had to come to grips with the fact that he wasn't in a video game and the good guys don't always win.

    Donna - Think this would be classified as YA, as Alex and the warriors are all teenagers. But the author doesn't talk down to his readers, which is really annoying in some YA books I've read. Think you would like this one!

  4. Could well be worth a look - I love the sound of these characters, they seem like such a truly mixed bunch. What a scary cover though.

  5. This sounds like an enjoyable and fun read. I may have to look into this one. It has a great twist of how the games and fantasy ideas come in handy. I like that idea.

    Great review!

  6. Petty Witter - I didn't care for the cover at first, but it made sense after reading the book. Loved the characters!

    Melissa - Think you'll like this one! Will be curious to hear what you think if you decide to give it a shot.

  7. I've recently finished this one too!! I'm hoping to have my review up shortly, but in the meantime I will say that I agree with you! I wasn't sure either and ended up being pleasantly surprised!

  8. Tif - Looking forward to your review! Wonder if Shiraz has any Axeman t-shirts available? Wouldn't that be cool? *L*

  9. Hm, this is one that I probably wouldn't usually pick up, but the gaming and fantasy aspects sound pretty awesome! If I see this around, I'll check it out. Thanks for the great review! :)

  10. At first I thought this might be one of those HP rip offs, but your review changed my mind!

  11. @Alexia, I just did a local promo and gave away 50 Axemen t-shirts when people bought the book. So, they're out there. Once I get a little more established I'm hoping to have them available online.

    You can see me, Alex, and Dara here:

  12. Alexia - Thanks for the information! I've kinda been on a YA kick lately so I might give this one a try. :)

  13. Alexia561 . . . Totally!! I just saw Shiraz's comment . . . I'm heading over to his website right now!!

  14. Jenn - Don't let the cover throw you off, it is well worth reading!

    Pam - Glad I could help! :D

    Shiraz - Really? Awesome! Checked out your site and love the shirts!

  15. I have to post my review on this one yet. I liked it too.

  16. Sheila - I'll keep an eye out for your review! Loved Alex!

  17. This one looks great!! Also, I have an award for you at my blog!!!

  18. This one looks great!! Also, I have an award for you at my blog!!!

  19. inthehammock - Thank you! Heading over to your blog now! :-)


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