by Brian Terenna
Hundreds of years after the Great World War, America is a distant memory. In the ashes, new civilizations have risen up from the Wilds. Locke’s Coalition and Liberty Kingdom, bitter enemies, have been at peace for seven years. War is never far from politicians’ minds, though, especially when one is the tyrant Archduke Goldwater. For all of human kinds’ positive traits, the character flaws of corruption, greed, anger, and revenge are etched into our DNA.
In the new world, little technology remains and advanced weapons are in short supply, but today’s soldiers fight with innate power. They fight with Talent … the psionic powers that develop in a random few.
A young Coalition citizen, Jaden Stone, dreams of graduating, having fun, and falling in love. As if his hard-nosed uncle, schoolyard bullies, and exams weren’t hard enough to handle, he discovers that he wields Talent. He’d now be forced to serve in the military, forced to train and fight, all for an organization that killed his parents.
Will Jaden work hard for his people or will his desire for leisure win over? He’s forced to decide when a tragedy shakes his core.
Ben turned away from me before picking up a few small rocks. “Let’s see if you’re any stronger from lifting all those weights. Maybe you’ll beat me for once.”
Nodding and smiling, I pointed at him. “You first.”
Ben stood, then stretched, his back popping as he rotated his torso. Hefting a rock, he wound up and then threw it. The projectile crossed the wide creek and bounced in the distance before skidding to a halt. Lips pressed in a straight line, I shook my head, annoyed. He topped his last week’s throw by a yard; he always beat me. He turned and smiled, stretching his long toned arms above his body.
I shrugged. “Eh, an all right throw,” I said with a wry smile.
Ben faced me, his eyes crinkling. “Riiiiight,” he said, while slowly bobbing his head. “Okay… beat me then.”
Images of my uncle’s flushed-face appeared before me, fueling my strength. I gritted my teeth while drawing back my arm. In a flash, I whipped my arm forward, releasing the rock. It sailed over the creek, whizzing through the air. With a loud crack, it slammed into a birch tree, punching a hole through the trunk. My jaw dropped halfway to the ground.
Out of the corner of my eye, Ben wavered, looking like he’d topple over. He shook his head, his hazel eyes wide. “Wowww… how did you do that?”
What had just happened? I lowered my head to stare at my hands, turning them over repeatedly.
I slowly raised my eyes to fixate on the hole again.
“Jaden? Hello… Jaden.”
“What?” I asked, just realizing Ben was speaking to me.
Ben patted my arm quickly, conferring a sense of urgency. Reluctantly, I tore my eyes away from the hole to face Ben.
He leaned in close, shaking. He spoke in a low voice, eyes darting side to side. “I think it was green.”
“What?” I shook my head, attempting to re-ground myself in the world. What was going on?
Now, he spoke louder, emphasizing with his hands in rapid motion. “The rock… it was green. It glowed green. Don’t you see? You’re one of the Talented.”
I have to say that Talent Storm was a fantastic read. I thought that the story and plot were original and well developed, and the characters had a great deal of depth and accurately depicted the complexity and at times ugly side of human nature. Once I started reading Talent Storm, I had a difficult time putting it down. I was really able to visualize myself fighting for survival in the post-apocalyptic world created by the author. The novel also touched on many of the contemporary social, political, educational, and military issues facing our world today which kept me engrossed from beginning to end. I would recommend this book to anyone.
About the Author
Brian Terenna grew up in Doylestown, Pennsylvania, reading fantasy and science fiction. He is now a fantasy, science fiction, and paranormal romance writer. Talent Storm is his first fantasy novel. Brian is also a voracious reader and book reviewer, an avid chess player, and he meditates regularly.