The Changeling - K D Lathar

Mark Robson

Dragon Writer
Aug 31, 2004
Daventry - England
This debut novel by Kamal Lathar was an interesting read. The book is one of the most impressive (presentation-wise) self published books I've come across. If I'm honest, though, I would have to say that I can see why he ended up self published and not picked up by a traditional press, but I'll come to this in due course. What is even more impressive than the cover is that he instantly picked up a national distribution deal through Ottakars - something I'm still working on!

The premise of this story, which he advertises as the first of a six part series, involves a young boy with the power to transform himself into a badger, either totally, or in part. I must say this was an interesting choice of animal, as it gives him some unique 'abilities' to play with. The badger's ability to 'see' through sound in total darkness is a very useful tool within the story, as those who decide to read it will see.

There are many of the traditional fantasy story tools on display here. A special book acts as a sort of gateway to another world where certain characters appear to be mirror images of characters in this world. Peter, the hero, is taken to Castle Craven where all the children of the tribes are being held in captivity to mine for stones that hold a special power. Peter, along with two other changelings, one who can turn into an otter and another who can become a hawk act to free the children from captivity.

In principle I liked the ideas behind the story that Lathan has written, but I found his story progression and flood of ideas too skittish to form a clear view of his fantasy world. His description, in parts, is good, though his storyline didn't flow in a way that left me wanting more. His second book in 'The Changeling Saga' is called 'The Well' and is due out next year. I will be intrigued to see whether his writing develops as the series progresses. He certainly seems to have no lack of ideas.
Mark, I tried looking Kamal Lathar up online and couldn't find anything. Does he have a website listed in his book? Or maybe who the publisher is so we could look up some additional information on him?
What is even more impressive than the cover is that he instantly picked up a national distribution deal through Ottakars - something I'm still working on!
Is Ottakars the publisher? Sorry for being naive. I'm not sure how it works to have a book published. :)

Overall how did you enjoy the book? And what age group would you say this book is for? Sorry for all the questions, Mark. Usually I can look up this info online, but you threw me a curve ball. ;)
The publisher is an outfit called Tarragon Publishing. Here's a link to their website. Seems like he's thrown a lot of money at this project.I notice from the front page that Kamal has won a very reputable Literary Agency to represent him in future. David Higham was one of the bigger London agents to reject me (their loss!). I'm guessing we're going to see more of this chap.
I liked the sound of the first page :) Has a nice, sharp writing style.
Thanks, Mark for the link. The first page is very catchy. Will have to add to my LOOOOOOOng to read list. It's very impressive to see that all his Hardback copies are sold out. :)
ive tried to get my hands on the original ist edition hardbacks by Lathar, but the prices theyre selling out now are now v high, was wondering if anyone knows if theres any chance of still obtaining any at retail price?

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