The Five Elements (The Alchemancer, #1) by Scott Marlowe


The author sent me a copy (epub format) in exchange for an honest review (member of Rosie’s Book Review Team).


My rating:  4.2  of  5  stars

(by Goodreads)

Aaron — scholar, alchemist, and sorcerer’s apprentice—wants nothing more than to study his tomes, perform his experiments, and spend time with his closest friend, Shanna. Substitute the occasional romp about the city for the books and plenty of games of crutchit for the smelly alchemicals, and Shanna is just fine with that, too.

Their routines—and their lives—are thrown into chaos when an elemental attack is launched against their home. Aaron thinks Shanna killed, while Aaron himself is forced to flee for his life. For Shanna, who survives that fateful night, the greatest adventure of her life is about to begin. Only the worst of nightmares awaits Aaron: pursued by dwarves, hell hounds, and a demon who will not stop until he is dead, the only thing keeping him alive is his own resourcefulness and an eslar mercenary whose reputation as a killer might make him the worst threat of all.

Though Aaron and Shanna travel different paths, their purpose is joined when they individually learn of the mysterious Fifth Element. Shanna sees it as the final piece in the puzzle that is her destiny. To Aaron’s logical mind, it is an impossible ambiguity. Whatever the answer, the Fifth Element draws them back together and into a final confrontation not as allies, but as adversaries.


Genre(s):  Fantasy

Series:  The Alchemancer (World of Uhl), #1

Length:  421 pages

Release Date:  2010-12-07



“Rion,” Master Elsanar said, “see that Aaron is taken somewhere safe. Stay with him. They might try to take advantage.”

Rion nodded in reply. “Come with me, Aaron. Time is short.”


My Opinion

This book introduces you to the Aaron and his friend Shanna. Aaron is shy, alchemy and studying are his world. Shanna is determined. I will not tell you more about the stories than shown in the Goodreads plot description. This would spoil the fun of reading this book yourself.

With The Five Elements, Scott Marlowe has created a thrilling first book in The Alchemancer series. The Five Elements tells Aaron and Shanna’s stories, each gripping in its own way. You get to know Aaron and Ensel Rhe Alon as well as Shanna and Erlek better and better with each chapter. Aaron is a very likable character and I held my breath along the way, feeling quite close to him and Shanna. I was drawn into the story – hoping to stay out of harm’s way. This is for you if you like fantasy and fast paced adventures.

The World of Uhl is addictive!  😀


In brief

Writing Great
Plot Many twists
Mood Suspenseful
Pace Fast
Characters Developed
Violence Some violence
Sexual content No sexual content
POV Third person


About the author

Scott Marlowe is an engineer, an outdoor enthusiast, and a weaver of tales that often end in wondrous, explosive mayhem. He holds degrees in Computer Science Engineering, Comparative Literature, and English from the University of California, Davis.

Scott lives in Texas, where he drinks copious amounts of strong coffee and rides his mountain bike whenever the opportunity arises.


Connect with the Author:

The World of Uhl:
Amazon:  Scott Marlowe
Amazon (US):  buy link


Please take a look at my statement on reading in My train of thoughts on …reading.  Now I am asking you.  🙂

My questions for you bibliophiles:
What about you?  What did you think about The Five Elements?  Or – if you did not yet read The Five Elements  – are you now interested in reading it yourself?

My question for you cinephiles:
If the The Five Elements were filmed – who should direct it, who could you imagine as actors?

I am looking forward to reading your comments.  🙂




4 thoughts on “The Five Elements (The Alchemancer, #1) by Scott Marlowe

  1. Karen, this sounds like it would meet the current interests of many book readers and possibly film viewers. I am not so much a science fiction or fantasy book reader. I admire your completeness in every review you write! I think Ethan Hawke and The girl from Theory of Everything have the “non-actor” looks needed to portray these characters. I am just winging it on director, maybe get Jason Bateman. I liked his directorial debut in his, “tour de force” film called, “Bad Words.”

    • This book sounds certainly very appealing to a major crowd. I really admire Scott Marlowe’s writing; he has his own style and the readers do not necessarily have to be hard-core fantasy addicts.
      I could imagine Felicity Jones as Shanna – good choice, Robin. I could imagine Devon Bostick as Aaron; Ethan Hawke might be a little young for some of the other major roles – especially as I cannot imagine him as a warrior like Ensel Rhe.

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