After following the Recluse saga and the Spellsong cycle, I was really looking forward to something new from Modesitt. I like his style, not the really exciting storylines from other authors, but precise prose that really gets the story across and gives a deep understanding of the characters. Alucius really is too good to be true, even for growing up in solitude. But this all explains his actions as a grownup captive, and shows him to be quite a strategic thinker. ( he fell in love pretty quick though!) I enjoyed this book as a change from the fast paced action and emotional upheavel that is normally fantasy. I certainly will look forward to the next book in the series.
As usual modessit produces a fairly credible world in which to set the story. The story (as is often the case with this author) revolves around a fairly 'special' individual with greater than average powers who has to come to terms with how these abilities deterimine his role in life. This particular story has a martial feel with the main character becoming a soldier. The fact that various events occur during this story (I won't spoil the plot) means that we almost have several sub-stories within the main event. On the whole fans of Modessit won't be dissapointed by this book.
Alucius is a herder of nightsheep in the Iron Valleys. He lives with his mother and grandfather who is also a herder. His father was killed during his compulsory enlistment in the Iron Valley's militia. This sets the scene for a wonderful adventure. Herders are men and women apart in that they have Talent with a capital T. They need this special mind power to keep their flocks safe from sandwolves on the Quarosote plains. These creatures are deadly dangerous and swift, so herders have to be crack shots too. Alucius is VERY Talenented indeed, which as with all herders, he is at pains to hide. If it became known, the traders of the Iron Valley Council would stop at nothing to claim him for their use. He would never be free of them. When it is time for his enlistment in the militia, he puts on his nightsilk underwear (bullet proof silks that are woven from the fleece of Nightsheep) takes his horse (Wildebeast) and his rifle, and walks into history. The above is only a very sketchy description of the beginning of this excellent book. Alucius becomes first a scout, something his grandfather advised him to try for so that he could use his talent to protect himself without being obvious about it, then later after many battles, he becomes a squad leader, a prisoner, a Maitrite soldier forced to fight for his enemy, and finally a captain of escaped prisoners bent on returning to the Iron Valleys. Wonderful book! Mark E. Cooper
This book is the first book by L E Modesitt that I have read. A fan of fantasy novels any way and in search of a new author to occupy the time I stumbled across L E Modesitt. I enjoyed this book enough to read it in almost one sitting. The main character, Alucius was a well written character and the problems he faced in this novel were believable and allowed the reader to sympathise with the character. However, i felt the ending was a little weak and there were points in which i wanted to skip forward a few pages for the plot to progress a little quicker, but over all it is a good novel that has left me seeking out more of his books as well as eagerly anticipating the sequel to this novel.
The Corean Chronicles are wicked. Modesitt's characterization is so strong - the story is centralized on Alucius, an implied pinnacle of morality who, once at war, quickly develops a habit of killing without too much soul-searching. He's the ultimate Gemmell-esk Romantic type, who does what he has to do to get through, all-the while overcoming astounding odds to achieve the impossible...
I really enjoyed the Corean series, and re-read it frequently. I like stories where the hero has difficulties as he goes along but does kick ass in general. It's easy reading, but it's lots of fun and highly enjoyable. I think Modesitt has got this one absolutely spot on!
I liked this book because it was quite different to what I usually read. It had excitement and action with lots of imaginative plot ideas. The grammar though was poorly written and the end is a bit of a let down.