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Ratings and Reviews (2 19 star ratings
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    TRAITOR'S BLADE: Addition to the Best of Fantasy

    What if the two greatest swordsmen in the world were not rogues, but magisters, bringing justice to people who have never known it? What if they were not a duo, but a trio, and the third was the greatest bowman in the world? What if they wore, not cloaks, but greatcoats lined with bone plates for protection and riddled with hidden pockets to hold whatever they and their 141 brothers and sisters might need, and from which they took their name? And what if the gentle King they served was murdered by the powerful who had no use for justice, and the Greatcoats were scattered, reviled as traitors and despised by all--even those they sought to help--as "Tatter-cloaks"? If all this were true, you would have only the beginning of a brilliant addition to the best of all Fantasy, written by a first-time author genuinely named Sebastien de Castell. You would have TRAITOR'S BLADE. From the first chapter, which not only introduces the trio--Falcio val Mond, who tells the tale, Kest Murrowson, and Brasti Goodbow--the world, and their situation in it, but does so with delightful dialogue and deft turns of phrase, while simultaneously tossing the Greatcoats headfirst into trouble and the readers into the plot (and all in a mere 10 pages), TRAITOR'S BLADE seizes mind and heart and never lets go. There are tragic pasts, broken hearts, valor, despair, hope reborn, twists, betrayals, revelations, redemptions, disasters, and spectacular swordplay. Every character is layered, none is without flaw, and many will surprise. Falcio's wry, self-deprecating voice covers devastating grief and rage at an unjust world, yet he clings to the last remnant of his shared dream. Prone to blurting exactly the wrong words in personal encounters, when he speaks to a people made desperate, he awakens the dream in them and inspires acts of defiance and great courage. TRAITOR'S BLADE never falters or bores, never sacrifices character for action (or vice versa), and never makes you wish for an editor. When you reach the end, what you will wish for is more. More of these characters, more of this world, more Greatcoats! That wish has been granted with KNIGHT'S SHADOW, SAINT'S BLOOD, and TYRANT'S THRONE. I am more excited about these novels--these stories--than I have been about any Fantasy for too long. They are not THE LORD OF THE RINGS, nor are they Fritz Leiber's Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser, the best of Heroic Fantasy and Sword & Sorcery, respectively. They are described as "swashbuckling," but that term does not do them justice. They are their own. They are the Greatcoats. I have no higher recommendation.
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    Worth Every Moment Of Your Time

    Excellent story unfolds in a fast paced, well written book. The main characters make you love them right from the start. The dialogue is stellar and the fights scenes are first rate. Lots of surprises and I'm not embarrassed to admit, tears. Buy the hardback because you will want to re-read this and pass it on to your kids.
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