The Path of Decisions by Mike Shelton

The Cremelino Prophecy, book 2
Category:  coming of age, myths and legends, science fiction and fantasy, sword and sorcery, teen and young adult
Release Date: May 4, 2016
My Rating:  4 stars

Description

“Forgotten lines of ancient magic and the power of the throne. One will make them both his own if his heart sees the true power. He will bring light to fight darkness and love to fight hate if he reaches into the power of his heart...” So continues the ancient Cremelino Prophecy. 

In the second book of this young adult/teen fantasy series, Darius San Williams, now the first commander of the King’s Elite Army struggles with his emerging and ancient powers. After winning his first battle against external foes, he must decide now to follow the King or to take matters in his own hands. Back in Anikari Christine wrestles with how to confront oppression against her people, while in Belor, Kelln must escape the clutches of an evil wizard and warn Darius. Mezar, the captured Gildanian quietly watches everything closely and harbors a secret of his own. Each of their decisions will determine the fate and destiny of their friendship and their kingdom.

Review

The first book in the Cremelino Prophecy series, The Path of Destiny, is a story of seeking your identity, The Path of Decisions is a story of finding your identity.  In the first book, Mike Shelton gives us a long character development story with little adventure.  Fortunately, The Path of Decisions sees the characters solidifying their identities and it moves us into the adventures, intrigues, magic, and good versus evil found in a solid fantasy, adventure, sword and sorcery fiction novel.

I find that the books of the Cremelino Prophecy series are teen friendly.  There is definitely violence but the protagonist Darius seeks conflict resolution positively, attempting not to take lives when pushed into battle.  He uses some serious tactical skills and his growing magical ability to accomplish his objectives.  Darius also has the gift of uniting people.  Here is more that is good for teen readers:

  • The Path of Decisions is a clean story; there is no bad language and no sexual content.
  • Shelton encourages virtues such as bravery, integrity, honesty, loyalty, willingness to admit and seek restitution when you are wrong, and so on.

There is a hitch for Christian parents…

Mike Shelton definitely includes religion in this series.  I’m not exactly sure where he is going with it but I would not classify it as Christian.  Here are a couple of quotes

Kelln continued. “I have even found the peace of God.” “You found what?” “I found out that what we are inside is what makes us who we are, Darius.” Kelln continued in all seriousness. “That is the only way I can deal with everything that has happened to me.”
— Kelln
“I don’t know him well. Alas, maybe that is also why I must give away my kingdom now. But there is someone out there, Richard. Someone that directs us toward good. I have felt him before, when I am doing the right thing.”
— King Edward

I’m going to let the quotes speak for themselves but the main component of the religion and philosophy Shelton writes is that of love and doing the right thing. 

God is loving but that is far from His most defining characteristic.  We cannot begin to understand what is right in God's eyes before we have been redeemed or saved because of Christ's sacrifice.  The Bible tells us that an unbeliever cannot please God.  We are wretched sinful creatures that a mighty and wrathful God has chosen to show mercy upon.  This mercy is where the love of God is shown.  It is through the gift of the Holy Spirit, time spent studying the word of God, fellowship with other believers, and a sincere willingness to be a disciple that the “Someone” Shelton introduces us to in the second quote above, someone that I call God, “directs us toward good”.  
Romans 3:10-20

As long as your teen is spiritually discerning this is a book that I believe they would enjoy.  I did.


The Cremelino Prophecy Series

The Alaris Chronicles

Mike Shelton

Mike Shelton

Mike was born in California and has lived in multiple states from the west coast to the east coast. He cannot remember a time when he wasn't reading a book. At school, home, on vacation, at work at lunch time, and yes even a few pages in the car (at times when he just couldn't put that great book down). Though he has read all sorts of genres he has always been drawn to fantasy. It is his way of escaping to a simpler time filled with magic, wonders and heroics of young men and women.
 
Mike began writing stories in elementary school and moved onto larger novels in his early adult years. He has worked in corporate finance for most of his career. That, along with spending time with his wonderful family and obligations at church has made it difficult to find the time to truly dedicate to writing. In the last few years as his children have become older he has returned to doing what he truly enjoys - writing!