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A Myth to the Night: Parts I-V by [Choi, Cora]
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A Myth to the Night: Parts I-V Kindle Edition


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Length: 265 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Product Description

Product Description

Once home to the illustrious Order of the Crane -- guardians of the world's myths and legends -- Stauros Island, now in the hands of the Order of the Shrike, is an elite university whose students are guaranteed positions of power upon graduating.

However, a dark curse hangs over the island: students are disappearing. The school officials declare it the work of a demon, and blame Hugh Fogg -- a young monk of the Order of the Crane who died 400 years earlier.

Could the spirit of a young man who died in 1615 come back to haunt an island and terrorize its students? If so, for what purpose? A Myth to the Night is Hugh's story and his struggle to see his mission complete.

This is the series in its entirety. Parts I-V, which have been published separately, are combined into this book. For more information please visit: www.staurosisland.com

Product Details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1124 KB
  • Print Length: 265 pages
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00M2RFP04
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
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  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Amazon.com: HASH(0xa3c17d5c) out of 5 stars 8 reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa3c0751c) out of 5 stars It is amazing… in theory and in concept, but in execution, not so much. Aug. 9 2014
By Lulu - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition
High 2.5, low 3 stars.

*This book was received for free via NetGalley for an unbiased review*

I was immediately drawn to A Myth to the Night because of the amazing cover art. It looked beautiful, and the synopsis made it sound amazing. It is amazing… in theory and in concept, but in execution, not so much. There are some serious flaws with world building and the major conflict of the novel has a huge glaring plot hole that makes me wonder if the author really thought this through.

Hugh Fogg is the main protagonist of the novel. He has been a phantom for near 400 years, having been a victim of a massive massacre that took place in the 1600s. He was a monk in the more genteel order of the world, the Order of the Crane. The Order of the Shrike was the second world order that was responsible for the murders of the monks. Immediately, we see that Choi decided to create a simple black-and-white dichotomy of the world, where you are either a Crane or Shrike, good and brave or evil and cowardly. There are no other orders, no other choices. This in and of itself is not a problem, but it does become problematic when you realise that a good deal of the characters will fall into a grey, in-between category. They are not brave or good or evil or cowardly, yet simply are. It’s detrimental to the novel as a whole when everything is so black and white that the many greys written about in the novel are neglected.

After the massacre, Hugh remained on the island he was murdered on in order to fulfill one last task. While he lived, he was charge with preserving a myth called The Slayer of the Shadow of Fear. It is a basic prophecy detailing how one person will rise up and defeat the Shadow of Fear, literally an all consuming fear that is brought on when someone is overwhelmed with fear/anxiety. This Shadow of Fear forces the one it contaminates to kill themself, and then turns their soul into a demon like creature that is never free to rest. This is an amazing concept that I really loved. It was well done and well crafted. The idea that you are your own worst enemy for letting your fears and anxieties control your life is incredibly relevant, especially when you consider the age group this is marketed for. Disseminating the message that you can overcome your fears and that standing up for yourself and pushing on is possible and can lead to happiness is something that the YA audience desperately needs to hear and believe.

Sadly, this was the best part of the book and the only well-crafted and thought out piece. You see, there are other phantoms on the island with Hugh, but they were never really alive. They are actually characters from famous myths, legends, folk tales, and fables. The Order of the Shrike destroyed all of their books and stories once they took over control of the world via the massacre of the Order of the Crane. With no one to inspire, they rose from the burnt pages they belonged to and haunted the island alongside Hugh, waiting for their tales to be told once again. THIS is the most problematic part of the novel. This is where more thought should have been placed by Choi and by her editor. Supposedly, these phantoms and their stories are the only way people can overcome their fears and defeat their Shadow of Fear. When they hear about these amazing stories and feats of strength, they are inspired to stand up to fear. It provides a cathartic experience. Since these stories no longer exist, people no longer have a way to defend themselves or inspire themselves against the Shadow of Fear. Now, if the world that Choi created was a darker world with no forms of entertainment and the residents resembled the masses in The Giver, then I could understand the need. It would make sense and it would make the entire story work. But, that isn’t the case. There is still entertainment in the world, “Only names like James Dean and Elizabeth Taylor were on the lips of the students.” Well, if the masses have access to cinema, then wouldn’t they have access to stories? Wouldn’t these alternate forms of entertainment offer the same defense against fear as these parables once did? It seems as though the entire world remains the same, we have internet access, we have television, we have movies, books still exist, yet through all of these different mediums, not a single story showing a person overcoming their fear exists? It makes no sense at all. This is where the entire novel falls apart and the premise becomes nonsensical. Did the author realise such a plot hole existed? Did she come up with an excuse for it, but simply forgot to mention it in the novel? Did she hope no one would notice? Or perhaps she hoped readers would assume this was all thanks to some overreaching metaphor that certain classical books are more essential than anything else that can be created. Either way, this was something that desperately needed some explanation, yet it never came.

Apart from that, the story was enjoyable and fast-paced. Characters were fun, action came easily, and the story, though various detours, never halted.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa3c2a834) out of 5 stars This story was very interesting and different. July 28 2014
By Amber L.T . - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition
The phantom of a young monk tells us the story of his afterlife's work - finding the Slayer of the Shadow of Fear, and releasing the oppressive hold of the Order of the Shrike on the world. There are many characters in this book, both human and spirit, but they are well written and it is easy to keep track of them. Some parts of the book had too much telling and repetition, but overall the story was solid and well imagined. The monk's story ended too soon, however the ending did make sense and it was a pleasure to read it.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa3bfa9d8) out of 5 stars Intriguing! Aug. 6 2014
By Brooke Warner - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition
Cora Choi's characters are wacky, unique, and haunting. The alternate universe she's created is intriguing, dark, and at the same time oddly fun-loving. I was drawn in to the imaginative storyline from the get-go. This is a book that's as much for adults as it is for young readers. A Myth to the Night is as much a love story to the myths many of us grew up reading as it is a look into a world of misunderstood ghosts and haunted spirits who, at the end of the day, thrive through story-telling. A good read.
HASH(0xa4529810) out of 5 stars To be read like a myth, too Feb. 1 2015
By Yzabel - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition
(Note: I got a copy from NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review.)

While this novel had its flaws, I nevertheless enjoyed it for some of the ideas it brought forth and for its half-dystopian, half-anachronistic atmosphere. The latter might be a deterrent to some, as it's quite peculiar, but overall I liked it.

The story itself partly reads as a myth, with its cast of characters born from legends. After all the books about them were destroyed, they came to exist as "phantoms" on Stauros Island, striving to tell people at night about who they had been and what symbols and values they were meant to embody. The descriptions given of these people/heroes/creatures, as well as of their surroundings on the island, lent the novel quite a magical feeling.

I also liked the idea of an evil sect controlling the world through fear and systematic destruction of old tales and knowledge, so that people wouldn't have anything to turn to, and would more easily allow themselves to be ruled. The sect's role was a bit far-fetched and one-dimensional, in a "big villain" way, but on the other hand, it also had echoes of secret societies born from wealthy frats, or of a New World Order of some kind—people educated at Stauros are groomed to be the rich and powerful of this world, complete with signets revealing their belonging to the Order of the Shrike. This definitely wasn't uninteresting.

On the downside, some parts were somewhat muddled and slow, and could lead to questioning the world-building if one thinks about it too much. Some aspects were clearly simplistic and/or too manichean or predictable. If you're looking for solid world-building, these flaws will quickly become manifest. If you choose to read A Myth to the Night as a kind of myth itself, then it's less of a problem.
HASH(0xa4529804) out of 5 stars Engrossing Alternate History YA That Never Quite Lives Up To It's Promise Feb. 23 2015
By Antonio Urias - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition
Cora Choi's A Myth to the Night is a Young Adult fantasy novel set in an alternate history controlled by the secretive and exclusive Order. Four hundred years ago, Hugh Fogg was sent to Stauros Island to become a monk in the Order of the Crane. He spent his life studying and diligently recording myths and legends, until a rival order arrived and massacred the monks. Hugh has remained a phantom, the keeper of an old story and prophecy waiting for the Slayer of the Shadow of Fear. Meanwhile, the victorious Order of the Shrike has turned the island into a school and slowly spread their influence across the world.

Cora Choi has an easy to read style that draws the reader into this world of draconian school rules, ancient orders, phantoms, myths, and madness. Hugh and his compatriots are reasonably well drawn and the plot, while predictable, is fast moving and often engrossing. The world outside Stauros Island, however, is only vaguely depicted. For a secret order dabbling in dark powers, and successfully ruling most of the world, the Order of the Shrike is only partially sketched out, and its global influence is referred to but never truly felt.

A Myth to the Night skirts the edges of fascinating ideas, ideas society and the nature and role of stories but never quite engages with them. Cora Choi has a deft hand for prose and has gathered an intriguing mix of ideas and references, but for me this was ultimately a novel that never quite lived up to its promise.