Thursday 25 October 2018

Review ~ The Peithosian Gift by Cristina Archer

Mèchant Publishing along with Rowanvale Books
August 2018

My thanks to Ben at Cameron Publicity for my copy of this book

The Peithosian Gift is a speculative fiction novel about two warring clans with the power to control the minds of others. 

Since ancient times, the Morgans and the Kanes have violently disputed the right to use their gift. The present-day Morgans are outnumbered and persecuted by the Kanes for using their gift; most are in hiding, while others avenge the slaughter of their kin. The Kanes hunt and assassinate Morgans to prevent a mind-controlled world. While one clan seeks a ‘saviour’ to restore the imbalance, the other fears the birth of a too-gifted child. 

Radha, born of a third, lost clan, has superior powers that she is scarcely able to control. Events lead to a clash of clan leaders and key players, forcing Radha on the run with both sides hunting her.

My thoughts about it..

Mind games and mind control form the basis for this journey into the world of speculative fiction, which, I have to be honest and say, is not one of my go to genres. However, from the opening few chapters which set the scene in the ancient world, through to the bulk of the novel which brings the action into a more recognisable time, there is never a dull moment between the two opposing families who each seek control.

Both the Morgans and the Kanes are decidedly hostile to each other and have been this way for generations. Each have the ability to control the minds of others, and yet, whilst the Morgans think it acceptable to do so, the Kanes feel that people should be free to make up their own minds. It is this concept which allows the author free rein to create a complicated world and where the story has its depth.

There is much to take in, as the book is divided into distinct sections, and there are lots of characters to keep track of, and yet, the author succeeds, in this rather complicated plot, to allow the story to flow quite well, although, there were times when I found things a little confusing, and I had to back track in order to keep both the characters and the complicated plot in my head. 

I am sure that fans of speculative fiction and fantasy will find much to consider in The Peithosian Gift. I’m still not sure that this is ever going to be a comfortable genre for me, but I enjoyed being taken out of my comfort zone and given the chance to read something quite different.

CRISTINA ARCHER has long been fascinated by philosophy and psychology and has been writing fiction with these themes in her spare time since she was a teenager. She writes speculative/fantasy fiction as she believes these genres offer the widest scope to explore many a "what if" question that is relevant today. The Peithosian Gift is her fifth novel.

Cristina Archer lives in Melbourne, one of the most inspiring cities in the world. More information about her and her books can be found at

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