REVIEW: Age of the Dryad by Jacob Sannox

Nature won the war. Dryads, spirit protectors of the forests, have defeated mankind. Their King Dark Oak now reigns across The Old Continent, but his victory over Queen Cathryn only intensifies his need to control. Fueled by the painful memories of his past, he confines mankind to his unforgiving regime. Mankind is leaderless, powerless, and scattered. Still, Dark Oak is not satisfied. His boundless rage may destroy the very forests he sought to protect. A new age dawns in Jacob Sannox’s second book of The Dark Oak Chronicles. Age of the Dryad is classic fantasy meets post apocalypse.

Age of the DryadFor a thousand years the combined people were unified. Defying all odds, they stood against the dark lord and political turmoil. Their gathered strength is nothing compared to the new king of the Dryads. Dark Oak easily shatters their legacy. His victory topples their entire civilization. He imposes extreme sanctions, reducing mankind to simple hunters and gatherers. Displaced and homeless people became bandits and victims. The land became lawless. The forest grows unchecked and wreaks havoc on unprepared ecosystems, forcing the attention of other spirits.

Age of the Dryad reads as a set up for an epic finale. Dark Oak’s inability to let go of his past draws criticism from amongst the Dryads. Other spirits question his totalitarian regime. Queen Cathryn and others seek to kill him. His enemies are swarming from all sides, including his own. Dark Oak must split his focus between ruling and protecting his status as both King of the Dryads and overseer of mankind.

The first step to becoming a dark lord is having good intentions. Age of the Dryad is a detailed account of Dark Oak’s descent into madness. The reader is provided with more of Dark Oak’s reflection of his troubled past. To maintain control, Dark Oak searches for dark and forbidden knowledge. His struggle with justifying his actions and his uncontrollable anger makes him a compelling villain.

Age of the Dryad follows the perspectives of other characters including Queen Cathryn, Sir Tolucan, and Dark Oak’s children. Like the first book Dark Oak, the reader is privy to planned schemes and deceptions. Despite the numerous perspectives, there are still plenty of surprises in Age of the Dryad. Jacob Sannox’s writing shines during his characters’ darkest moments.

Age of the Dryad is a slow burn that quickly picks up pace in the second half. It is rewarding to discover how the different facets of Jacob Sannox’s worldbuilding and characters entwine. The Old Continent may witness history repeat itself. The dark lord was slayed but the more powerful Dark Oak is tracing his footsteps.

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Age of the Dryad

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Carrie Chi Lough

Carrie Chi Lough

Carrie resides in Colorado with her other half and their puppy, Irwin. She is always searching for dark SFF and horror stories to bury herself in.