The action continues fast and furious in this third installment of Elizabeth Moon’s celebrated return to the fantasy world of the paladin Paksenarrion Dorthansdotter. This award-winning author has firsthand military experience and an imagination that knows no bounds. Combine those qualities with an ability to craft flesh-and-blood characters, and the result is the kind of speculative fiction that engages both heart and mind.
All is not well in the Eight Kingdoms. In Lyonya, King Kieri is about to celebrate marriage to his beloved, the half-elf Arian. But uncanny whispers from the spirits of his ancestors continue to warn of treachery and murder. A finger of suspicion has been pointed toward his grandmother, the queen of the Ladysforest elves, and that suspicion has only intensified with time and the Lady’s inexplicable behavior. Clearly, she is hiding something. But what? And why?
Meanwhile, in Tsaia, the young king Mikeli must grapple with unrest among his own nobility over his controversial decision to grant the title and estates of a traitorous magelord to a Verrakaien, who not only possesses the forbidden magic but is a woman besides: Dorrin, once one of Kieri’s most trusted captains. When renegade Verrakaien attack two of Dorrin’s squires, suspicion and prejudice combine to place Dorrin’s life at risk - and the king's claim to the throne in peril.
But even greater danger is looming. The wild offspring of a dragon are on the loose, sowing death and destruction and upsetting the ancient balance of power between dragonkind, humans, elves, and gnomes. A collision seems inevitable. Yet when it comes, it will be utterly unexpected - and all the more devastating for it.
©2012 Elizabeth Moon (P)2012 Brilliance Audio, Inc.
If you like the earlier books, you will like this one a well. It is going to sound strange, given the horrendous things that happen to some characters, but the goody-goody-ness is a bit much. Everyone is too... good or too evil. The tone is annoying at times. I know Arvid is caught in between but even he is too good.
Don't get me wrong, I really enjoy this series, but it is a not of the caliber of Brian Sanderson's Mistborn series. J.V. does a good job as narrator, too.
As a fan of Elizabeth Moon years ago, both of us are older these days. Ms Moon at least also seems wiser about how "ordinary" folk rise to fill a variety of magical and practical challenges. In following this saga, I have reflected on the value of paying attention to others' strengths and weaknesses with humility and compassion, understanding what their motivations are, and accepting everyone's limitations.
I particularly enjoyed the Thieves Guild master who has to accept his demi-god patron Gerd choosing him for higher purposes. When he finally realizes what is going on, he becomes vulnerable in a touching, very human way.
Can't wait for the next segment due out(in print) in June, 2013!
In an attempt to be "helpful", I am going to tell you the truth. This was a decent book about what happens in each of the relm's after Kerri became king. If you are looking forward to Paksenarrion adventures you will be dissapointed. Paksenarrion was mentioned several times as "I thought Paks would show up but she did'nt." I had the same thought all the way to the end. Two books in a row about Paks without Paks! I do not understand why authors have to leave the star out of their books. I hope that knowing this ahead of time will let you enjoy the book more than I did as it would have been decent if I had know it was'nt about her.
Science Fiction fan. Non-fiction fan. Classic literature fan...
She ruins it. God I wish they had used the other reader who does this series.
" I have my mind... & a mind needs books as a sword needs a whetstone, if it is to keep its edge." -T.L.
The book is alright, very few books by Moon are not well written, but this book could be a standalone with the relatively new characters & old family feuds... She doesn't write in a 'dark medieval' & hardcore violent ways, but that is part of her allure, she can weave a story without the gore... although I enjoy the 'gore' because battle back than was bloody business. I mean, u really have to dislike someone to smash they're face in with a hammer versus pull a trigger to a gun lol... The narrator I thought was always poor but tolerable.
I want to ensure this review expresses that the book is not bad, I did not like the books once Paks starting becoming absent & the new king takes the stage, but its still not bad. This takes nothing away from Moon's ability to write great books
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