Title: Mystic Quest: The Darkness Within
Author:Joseph S. Meraz
Point of Sale: Amazon
Reviewed by: veinglory
I wanted to like this book, but alas I comprehensively failed--so I will keep this mercifully brief. The Darkness Within is technically clean and well presented. However it has all the depth and pathos of a cut price fantasy war game. None of the characters, events or the entire world seem real. The names of people and places are jerked brutally from their historical context and feudal characters use language like "significant other" to refer to a girlfriend.
Characters referred to monotonously by some sobriquets like "the fair maiden" or "the warrior" move across a simplistic game board and engage in battles devoid of any kind of inconvenient topography or confusion, in which everyone can see exactly what is happening and only the actions of a half dozen people seem to be significant. Overall the book seems to be the work of a very undeveloped talent and, as such, at best a learning opportunity for the author. And given that the publisher is Tate (charging $4000 and up) it seems that it was an expensive lesson.