First of all, I enjoyed this novel. I wouldn’t be writing like this if I didn’t. I mean, I really, really had a good time reading it, and hey, isn’t that what it’s all about?So what can you expect from Schafer’s debut? I know we all like to pigeon-hole books into categories. It’s not a bad thing, it’s just so we can have some kind of idea of what to expect. I think the best way to describe The Whitefire Crossing is to use Schafer’s label of an “adventure fantasy.” With a heavy emphasis on adventure.I’m not going to rehash the blurb. You’re smart. You read it before you ever scrolled down to the reviews and if you didn’t, go read the blurb and come back. Otherwise, I’m going to talk to you like one fantasy reader to another.I quit reading epic fantasy for a long time, mainly because the emphasis was on epic and the reader could have inserted cardboard standouts for the characters. Schafer brings in wonderful, full dimensional characters without missing a beat on the adventure side of the story. I was pulling for Dev and Kiran from page one.Dev is a smuggler, who was abandoned to the streets as a child, and Schafer hits the right note with Dev’s adult character and his myriad trust issues. Kiran, a mage of great power, was also abandoned, but he had the advantage of being taken into a structured home. The two characters counterbalance one another beautifully and Schafer leads them to trust one another with skill.Schafer creates a believable world full of magic and danger. I especially liked the tension between the two rival countries of Ninavel and Alathia. The delicate balance between Ninavel and Alathia mirrored the complex relationship between Dev and Kiran throughout the novel.It was just a wonderful read and I’m looking forward to the next book in her Shattered Sigil series, The Tainted City. I think you will be too.