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Publisher's Summary

Scrappy but small, Kirrin gets beat up. A lot. So, when he hides from the local bullies in a powerful man's carriage, he's inadvertently transported to a vast rural estate. Far from home and hungry, Kirrin is caught stealing from the kitchen and fears the worst.

But the So'har Hak'kar is impressed with Kirrin's tenacity and quick wit. Instead of having him criminally punished, the great ruler sentences Kirrin to serve him while learning to fight, move with stealth, and solve intellectual puzzles.

Unfortunately, Kirrin doesn't realize he's being trained as the lord's personal assassin until he accidentally kills his first victim. Now, Kirrin's family is at risk. His life is at risk. He struggles with who he's becoming. After all, he's living a life on borrowed luck. But borrowed luck never lasts.

©2017 TJ Muir (P)2018 Tantor

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

You'll need to borrow another cuppa luck

This is a rather strange book to review. There are a lot of things good about it, and several things that were off.

First, the main character is extremely naive for being 17 years old. I get that he is runty and has no friends, but he is not street hardened in any way and is completely clueless to other people's machinations. I mean utterly unaware. I found it hard to believe that he never got any smarter running and hiding from his tormentors.

Secondly, this is very much a building the character kind of book. There quite literally is no pay off at the end of the book. No big scene, no real battle, just a he finally learned a lesson, albeit way to late for him to do anything. Instead, the author opts to show you how the protagonist gets his skills. Oh, and the guy seems to take a shower every five seconds. Seriously. Every paragraph practically starts with I had to shower before I met Ha'Kar, or I got done and took a third shower. It comes off like a weird writing fetish and it truly madly and deeply annoyed me.

The end of the book was about as anti-climatic as you could get and still have an ending. There is a lot of set up, so I imagine there will be some pay off in the next book. I would have happily endured the marathon training session if the MC had just learned something more than what was being taught to him, and when he commited his crime I lost all sympathy for him when he rectified the situation. He went from being a naive kid to a stone cold monster in three seconds. If he was going to go that route there should have been hints of it in his personality earlier. Sure, he'd fly into a rage if someone he cared about was hurt, but what he did was in a cold sober state of mind, and the way he almost instantly decided to keep away from his child shows that he is immoral.

Oh, and I want to say I am not against books that show you how a character grows in his or her skills. I loved the Gord the Rogue series by gary Gygax, which is just him showing you how Gord learned to pick lock or knife fight. That had a payoff. This book really doesn't.

In all honesty, I did not hate the book. I enjoyed it for the most part. I did think the narration was excellent. But it just had flaws. I know I will not be getting the next book when it hits Audible. I am content to have lived through this. Now, if you'll excuse me, I need to go take a shower.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Its odd, a little rough

Wish I could give a half star more. This is not my usual 3 star book, it is also not one of my 4/5 star books. Since I rarely give out 5 stars, I guess its my own fault. The premise and plot have some very intriguing aspects...but somewhere along the lines, it just didn't grab and hold my attention. The flow between scenes felt broken, the scenes felt a little forced, and the characters all feel like they are hiding something.

I wasn't thrilled with the performance. It could have been better.

I am not sure if this is an ok starter to a very good series or just bleh. With that in mind, your personal mileage may vary on this one. I think I would get book 2, just to see where it goes.