I haven't given this book a score higher than 3 because I found that it was let down a bit by the pacing. A large part of this story was taken up by developing and exploring the relationships between characters. Unfortunately, I never felt that the characters were developed in such a way that I really truly came to feel for them/or sympathize with their situation as much as I perhaps should have. I found that in some places, characters (even Tarod - the main character) felt "distant". I sometimes felt that I didn't really "know" Tarod --- I heard this improves as the series progresses, but there was a particular relationship with one character which seemed to develop in such a short span of pages and have such a major effect on the character that I was half left wondering at the authenticity of the whole thing.
Saying that, there was a lot about this book that I did like. The way the idea of "good" and "evil" were questioned was particularly well done. By the end of the book, no character is entirely good or evil, and you can see their motivations. Also, I didn't see the ending coming at all. And whilst the first book felt like it was mostly for setup, it was entirely needed, and now that the setup is out of the way, I am hopeful that the rest of the series can only get better.