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Cleric Quintet: Canticle Bk. 1 (Forgotten Realms: Short Stories) Mass Market Paperback – 28 Mar 2000
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An evil power threatens to overwhelm Cadderly, a scholar-priest, and when his brothers are trapped in the catacombs, he must struggle with himself to save his brothers and his own soul.
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However, Canticle is a well written novel and is somewhat refreshing for Slavatore in that the main character, the young scholar Cadderly, is not the invincible fighting machine that Drizzt, Wulfgar or Bruenor are in Salvatore's other books.
For those new to Salvatore, Canticle is an ideal starting point for an author who is one of the best at writing flowing action/battle scenes.
Cadderly is a young scholar who was orphaned and bought up in a monestary in a remote part of the Forgotten Realms. When this monestary comes under attack by a strange power, it is the bookish young man who must suddenly assume the mantle of a hero in an effort to save his brother priests who have suffered from a strange curse causing them to lose all inhibitions.
As the ordered priests suddenly succumb to every whim they may have, from binge drinking and eating to outlandish fornification, Cadderly finds some allies in his closest friends and with the beatiful warrior monk Danica and the dwarven Bouldershoulder brothers, Ivan and Pikel, he looks to right the wrongs around him.
This book is the perfect opener for the rest of the 'Cleric Quintet' but it does suffer a little becasue of that. The book is merely a staging novel for the following four books and while it is very enjoyable, the pace is a little slow to begin with as we're introduced to the characters.
However, this book is of course a must read as the rest of the series is excellent as the young scholar progresses to become a powerful priest and faces up to the ghosts from his own past in the process.
While this will never challenge the grey matter, it is an enjoyable piece of escapism and highly recommended.
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