This was a rip-roaring, good old fashioned adventure story that was so compelling; it had me gripped from the first page.
The novel tells the story of Gia, an angel who fell from heaven and is forced to embark on an epic quest through the realms of purgatory. The use of a classic ‘hero’s journey’ really propelled this story forwards in terms of plot. The plot progressed like a computer game as Gia descended systematically through the levels of purgatory, facing villains and monsters that became increasingly harder to defeat. The way the skill and brutality of the antagonists grew steadily as the book went on created an incredible amount of tension. The question – how is Gia going to get out of this one? – was a constant in the novel, which is probably what made it such a page-turner. This intriguing, methodical plot was very effective in drawing in the reader – there were places when I literally couldn’t put this book down.
The storyline wasn’t the only thing that impressed me when reading this book; the stunning action sequences and fight scenes were so visual and well depicted, I could see them as clearly as if they were projected onto a big screen. Orgill’s writing style is almost cinematic; it didn’t dive too deep into the well of character growth and description, yet it still packed enough power to keep me captivated. The prose had just the right amount of gore and sprinkles of humour to make it entertaining. The fight scenes were never boring and the characters were interesting enough to keep me company whilst I travelled through purgatory on this unusual, yet seriously epic, quest.
My overall judgement is that I really enjoyed this novel. It was light and fun, rife with thrills and amusing phrases like “Volcano Smoke Illusion!” and “Broom of the Cyclone!”. The plot was compelling and the narrative magnetic in nature. The central themes of the novel were also exciting: elements and the idea of bending them to your will featured heavily, as did mythological beings like Daedalus and the Phoenix. These themes and appearances, along with the spectacular world building and the lingering idea of brotherhood, turned what was already an exciting and entertaining novel into something that I really, truly enjoyed. Stories that incorporate family ties and magical creatures have always held a special place in the heart of most readers – myself included. The Tragedy of Gia had all these fascinating themes and the classic, hero-villain banter that I look for in adventure stories. Ever since I read my first Bond novel, I’ve loved the witty exchanges tossed between the protagonist and the antagonist, and successful banter before a battle or fight is something that I prize above all else when reading adventure, crime or fantasy. The Tragedy of Gia certainly didn’t disappoint on this front. The light-hearted dialogue was a pleasure to read.
I would recommend The Tragedy of Gia to anyone who enjoys a good, fast-paced story that incorporates thrilling action sequences and some rather entertaining central ideas.