Saturday, May 18, 2013

Book Review: "The Riyria Revelations"

Last night I finished "Heir of Novron", the third book of "The Riyria Revelations" by Michael J. Sullivan.

Set in a generic fantasy world of Elves, Humans, Dwarves, and Goblins, the story centers around Royce and Hadrian, a pair of mercenary thieves who accomplish high-end missions for a price. Royce is a stereotypical thief with excellent night vision and absolutely no morals whatsoever while Hadrian is the greatest swordsman in the world and has a strange sense of idealism and honor.

The two find themselves in the employ of a novice sorceress and princess to save her brother. From there, the two find themselves embroiled in fantastical adventures resulting in your usual saving of the world.

Sullivan's world is reminiscent of a D&D campaign version of Tolkien myths, but it plays out interestingly. Humans appear to be the dominant species in the world. Elves and Dwarves are subject races and second-class-citizens, at best while Goblins are slain on sight. The dominant religion is, by turns, kind and psychotically-evil. Themes of intolerance, nobility, and relationships are threaded throughout the story in the three novels. The novels themselves are really just collections of smaller books with self-contained, yet linked, stories. It's good stuff, especially with the fit hits the shan in the third book. It's choppy and cliche in many parts, but I found it to be a fun read. It's certainly better than a lot of other crap out there. I recommend it if you're in the mood for some fluffy fantasy.

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