- Title: Legion of Mono
- Author: C.D. Tavenor
- Series: None
- Genre: Fantasy, Short Story
- Publishing Date: January 29th, 2019
- Publishing Co.: Two Doctors Media Collaborative LLC
- Length: 37 pages
- Format: Kindle Unlimited
- Acquired: Gifted free digital copy in exchange for an honest review
- Amazon Link: Legion of Mono
Mono faces down the Holy Empire as it drives relentlessly toward the borders of his people. Yet even in the face of daunting odds, he holds onto their religious prophecies. Will hope reign supreme, or will Mono and his Legion succumb to their enemies?
*Since this is a short story, I will not be doing a First Chapter Challenge*
Final Judgment: 5 Stars
In this short fantasy story, Mono must leave his husband and daughter in their home of Lethotar, while he–the last commanding officer alive of their army–must lead the final battle against the Holy Empire. If Mono’s force falls, all of Lethotar and its people will be subjected to the mercy (or lack thereof) of the paleskins of the Holy Empire. They have already shown their true colors by breaking the treaty forged in good faith between the two nations… Will the Lord of Light’s, Lethotar’s people manage to hold off the overwhelming force advancing towards them? Or will the paleskin’s tyrannical religion sweep them away?
“Fifth Legion!” I cry. “We are the bastion of hope for our people. We are the last bulwark, the final defense. We stand, we fight, we die. Yet we still live!” (pg 12).
I read this story in less than an hour. It was so quick and engaging! The story line unfolds as Mono prepares his soldiers for war, but is sprinkled throughout with his past memories. As such, C.D. Tavenor, in such a short number of pages, creates this amazingly round and relatable character of Mono, one that we readers inherently wish happiness and success upon.
Both the characters and the setting–let alone the battle strategy!–create a fully dimensional world that I became entirely immersed in after reading the first few sentences. The storyline reminded me of the movie 300 (2006), where a small force must take overwhelming odds in order to save their country. The Fifth Legion–Mono’s Legion–too was made up of fiercely loyal and patriotic folk, all ready to die for their friends and family.
“We play our part in history. This supposed Holy Empire may wish to erase us from their history, but tomorrow, we will ensure that all who face us, face our blades, face our spears, face our arrows, face our hammers, we will ensure that they know and remember us for the rest of their lives. Lives we shall shorten considerably, throwing them deep into the pits and rocks of the Chasm!” (pg 9)
Also included within the story was a new religion, complete with war rites and prophesies. The religion was so beautifully intertwined within the story and Mono’s culture that it seamlessly blended the two together, further enhancing the story and Lethotar’s plight. I had goosebumps for the entire last half of the story! It tugged on my emotions in a way that is rare for me.
I also found it interesting that the main character was a gay male. It does not go into much detail with this, but he is obviously married to another man, and they have a young daughter. Woman are also allowed important roles in the army/nation, which is refreshing in a medieval-era story.
“Our Lord of Light stood on this side of the gorge, facing down his enemies, the demons of Hell. He smote them with lightning. Upon their deaths, he molded this bridge from sunsteel, connecting Lethotar to the other kingdoms.” (pg 11)
I highly recommend this story! It is so short and moving that I cannot see the downside… It’ll only take perhaps an hour of your life, but it may–as I know it will with me–stick around in your mind for much longer. It gave me hope. For what, I’m not sure. But I know that I enjoy this feeling.