2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Exciting heroic fantasy (once you get past the tedious beginning),
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This review is from: Ill Met in the Arena (Kindle Edition)
This is the kind of fantasy novel I enjoy, exciting action with interesting characters.
With many of Dave Duncan's books, I don't like the beginning, but after the first chapter or two, the story really takes off. This was the case here, too. The beginning is an infodump of names, genealogy, world-building, history etc. Basically, the whole fantasy world is explained before the story starts. That's tedious. I would prefer to read story straight away instead of wading through a morass of information.
But later it got much better, and I enjoyed it thoroughly.
The world Dave Duncan invented for this book (women and men have different paranormal talents; only women are permitted in rulership positions; men have to prove their worth in paranormal sports contests) is intriguing and plausible. World-building is one of Dave Duncan's strengths.
I believe this book will appeal especially to readers who enjoyed the "Seventh Sword" series by the same author. Just don't let the tedious beginning put you off.