Thursday, December 17, 2015

The Reaver

After Salvatore's The Companions, The Reaver has definitely been the most entertaining read from The Sundering series for me. It is written by Richard Lee Byers, who is also the author of Dissolution, the first volume of the War of the Spider Queen.

Unlike the previous books in the series, The Reaver has completely new characters. That definitely helps getting into the book as the author cannot rely on previous knowledge by the reader at all, and has to properly introduce the characters.

They are also quite interesting. Anton Marivaldi, the protagonist, is a scoundrel pirate who is not as mean as he would like to be. The events of the novel lead him to discover his kind heart.

Umara Ankhlab is a red wizard of Thay, who is not very fond of the reign of the undead in her homeland. However, still she remains loyal to it in hopes of seeing the nation change for better. Her apprenticeship to the vampire wizard Kymas Nahpret is uneasy for her but she sees it as necessary.

Evendur Highcastle as the antagonist is not as interesting. He is a pirate raised as undead by Umberlee to serve as her chosen. He is powerful for sure but does not get any more depth in the story. There is also Stedd Whitehorn whose potential to be likable to me is negated by the fact that he is a child. He is also a chosen of Lathander and on a mission to make the world brighter.

I found it odd that the god is called Lathander in this novel when in The Godborn he was Amaunator. Different locations does not really explain calling the god with different name as The Sea of Fallen Stars basically next to The Dalelands. Is the god now the ancient Amaunator who also secretly was Lathander and is now Amaunator again, or do we call him Lathander still?

The Reaver ends in a massive sea battle between pirates lead by Evendur and Turmishan fleet aided by druids of Silvanus. I certainly did not see that coming. But it sure was neat. As was the whole novel. There is something in Byers's writing that makes it pleasant to read.

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