Age of the Ashers (The Petros Chronicles Book 1), by Diana Tyler
Young Adult. Fantasy.
A well-crafted story that brings ancient myth to the modern world.
One power. One prophecy. One chance to change the world.
Petros is a well-oiled machine of an empire that has been overrun by evil. Every individual’s life is mapped out precisely, from the day of their birth until their much-anticipated Coronation at age seventy-five, when they each become ruler of their own personal paradise.
Eighteen-year-old Chloe Zacharias is content to exist as a social outcast and virtual recluse. Orphaned at the age of eight, she and her twin brother Damian live with their aunt and uncle, who only just tolerate their unwelcome charges. When classmate Ethan Ross gives Chloe a one-day pass to a newly opened museum, she discovers there’s much more to her utopian city, and the mysterious government that runs it, than she could ever have imagined.
An ancient prophecy has plans for Chloe; plans that will catapult her into the middle of an ages-old war between beings thought belonged only to ancient mythology.
When it becomes clear to the powers of the Underworld that Chloe could uncover their secrets and dismantle their world, the rulers send cunning Hermes, devious messenger to the lords of Hades, on a mission to destroy her before she finds out who—and what—she is.
Famed poet and romantic musician, Orpheus will do anything to reunite with his beloved wife Eurydice. Manipulated by Hermes into believing he can win back Eurydice if he charms a mortal known as “the Vessel,” Orpheus takes advantage of Chloe’s naïveté and voracious curiosity, and leads her into mortal danger.
Damian can’t ignore his sister or her strange behavior any longer. He has discovered that he has an astonishing gift of his own, and Hades and Apollo are shaken by the possibility that there is not one, but possibly two, entities with the power to topple the evil world they have created.
Chloe and Damian must work together, without becoming paralyzed by fear like their ancestors before them, or the citizens of Petros will continue to believe and be ruled by the horrific lies that have corrupted their world.
Filled with magic, mystery, and sprinklings of Greek mythology, Age of the Ashers is a powerful fantasy adventure for those who love to lose themselves in the world of make-believe.
What I most loved about this book was that the main character wasn’t main. There were multiple personalities, all well crafted in their imperfections, as well as petty gods who strove for attention even as they continued to be side-swiped by what they couldn’t have prepared for. While Chloe takes the majority of the pages in Age of the Ashers, she’s by no means the only one worth paying attention to. I was eager to learn more about both Damien and Ethan, as well as to find out more about the ancestors Chloe finds herself dropping in on.
The world of Petros is equally as well crafted. Organically, we’re led to the understanding that we’re not following the lives of those we might pass on the streets in our hometown. Petros is an entirely independent world where the subtle manipulations of the gods have rendered its people no longer true believers in their existence despite every rule and custom being created to ensure these gods receive proper tribute. The peaceful, modern lifestyle of all is only the shiny wrapping to a festering manipulation that goes on behind the scenes.
Finding out this reality, Chloe, Damian and Ethan come to terms, in their own ways, with this, as well as struggle to accept their importance in the possibility of releasing its people from the smothering dominion that’s hung over the people for two thousand years. This struggle doesn’t end all roses, either. A couple of choices left my mouth hanging, as characters redeemed themselves only to fall back again.
The book is also an excellent story in the power and importance of faith, a theme that’s well blended, especially as we read Iris’ story. This theme becomes more important in book 2, War of the Ashers and Ms. Tyler does a fantastic job laying the groundwork for that in her first installment of this chronicle.
My only “complaint” is that I felt books 1 & 2 should have been one book, but I understand. It’s just the way things are done…
Happy Reading 🙂
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