A darkly witty and cleverly executed paranormal fantasy

It can be terrifying to pick up any new book categorized under the genre of paranormal fantasy. Thanks to certain fiction, well-known paranormal plots and creatures have been butchered to accommodate to the tastes of younger readers; however, one newly published novel brings hope back to this unique and entertaining genre. Author Rick Heinz very recently published his debut novel as well as the first installment in his The Seventh Age urban fantasy series, The Seventh Age: Dawn.

From the outside, Mike Auburn seems like a normal man… a normal man who is always trying to kill himself. Yet Mike does not wish to kill himself, but rather come close to death so he can see the dead in search for answers of the afterlife. Little does he know that it is not just him that is closer to death than he realizes, but the whole world. The end times are approaching and the dead are rising up with the return of magic. The world is in trouble and Mike finds himself in the middle of an epidemic full of secret societies, demons, good, evil, reality, and magic.

One of the five winners of The Nerdist Collection Contest and published through the online publisher Inkshares, The Seventh Age: Dawn is paranormal fantasy done right. The fact of having the concept of magic being real, just forgotten and returning to the real world is enough to grip any reader’s attention. Upon opening, readers will find a story that is dark, yet witty, cleverly executed, and brings justice back to the paranormal genre with an excellent introduction to a series with great potential.

A very intriguing part of this story is the fact that it takes place in today’s society and what would happen if demons and magic were to start appearing in today’s world. Heinz does an exceptional job of portraying fiction becoming fact in a not so pleasant way. He expresses talent of shifting between dark and morbid to fun and humorous in a creditable manner and expresses just as much talent in jumping between characters from chapter to chapter while never losing readers’ attention.

There are many characters throughout the story, each housing their own unique characteristics and all playing important parts to the main plot. Readers will find themselves really liking certain characters, most perhaps growing instantly attached to the main character Mike Auburn. Mike is a very realistic person in a world that is quickly transforming into a hellish fantasy and though he is quirky and can be a jerk, he ultimately cares for the well-being of others. The other many characters are ones readers need to experience for themselves.

Beginning as a tabletop game Heinz created, The Seventh Age: Dawn is now officially a full-length novel and only the first in a new urban fantasy series. So much is included in just this first book and how the story’s execution will make readers believe magic really does exist somewhere in the world; however, if it were to ever reveal itself, perhaps it best not to come in the form of demons and the end of the world. Every turn of the page offers realistic magic, dark humor, and nonstop entertainment. This is how a writer makes his debut. What a promising start to a new dark fantasy series by a talented new author.


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