84 of 84 people found the following review helpful
A new and interesting world and a more romance-driven plot,
This review is from: Beguilement: 1 (Sharing Knife) (Hardcover)
The Sharing Knife is an exploration of a new fantasy world following on from Lois McMaster Bujold's last three fantasies set in a different world (The Curse Of Chalion, Paladin Of Souls and The Hallowed Hunt). The world of The Sharing Knife is that of 'farmers' who work the land or live in towns in a quasi-mediaeval era, and the 'Lakewalkers' who patrol the country and rid it of various nasties (Blight Bogles or Malices, Mud Men and other things). The Lakewalkers do this using special senses (groundsense) that the farmer folk don't have and consequently are rather feared for their 'sorcery'.
The Sharing Knife investigates what happens when these two worlds clash - when a farmer daughter helps a Lakewalker to dispose of a Malice - and the repercussions this has on the protagonists and their families. This book is the first half of a duology and deals with the world of the 'farmers' and our heroine Fawn's attempt to strike out on her own road and escape her stifling family. Dag, the Lakewalker who rescues her from some bandits, is an older and experienced Patroller who has lots in his past which he is trying to ignore. When these two meet they are forced to confront the differences between them in order to move on.
The love story is much more to the fore in this book than Lois McMaster Bujold's previous offerings - the Chalion series or the Miles Vorkosigan space operas. It's a gentle love story where you understand why hero and heroine are drawn to each other - mainly through the differences between them and shared experiences that bind them together. There are some amusing moments with Fawn's family and some scary moments when Fawn is kidnapped, but overall it is a gentle and light story which I enjoyed very much.
If you want to check it out yourself, there's a sample chapter posted at the following website: [...] Give it a go!