A fantastic series debut from a great voice in Epic Fantasy.
I had heard great things about Andy Peloquin’s work and i always love finding prolific authors, so delving into Darkblade Assassin to begin the massive epic tale of The Hunter Of Voramis had me intrigued and full of anticipation.
The Hunter is an assassin, and at the novel’s beginning, more or less a lone wolf. From
The start, we learn that he has little knowledge of his past and that despite being a feared killer by criminals, he is actually quite a defender of social justice and looks after street beggars in his home, and has a reputation in the city of Voramis as a protector. He also possesses an ability to heal quickly, making him virtually immortal, as well as a mysterious sentient dagger, know as Soulhunger, that urges The Hunter to kill, steals the souls of its victims and endows him with greater power.
Much of the novel deals with setting up exactly who The Hunter is. He is sent on a mission to murder the supposed rapist of a nobleman’s granddaughter, only to find himself swept up in a web of mistaken identity, and torture that ultimately leads not only to a new mission, one that likely sets the foundation for the entire series, but to the shocking comprehension of who he is, and why he possesses his unique gifts.
Peloquin spends a great deal of the novel inside the mind of its protagonist. The Hunter is a conflicted character, constantly at war with his desire to help those less fortunate and his addiction to killing partially due to the influence of Soulhunger. I’ve stated before that his character contains elements of Robin Hood and Venom, and despite some extremely violent scenes, Peloquin never lets us forget that at the core, he has heroic intent.
Peloquin’s prose, while not overly complex, reads well and his technique of switching from the main narrative to The Hunter’s own inner monologue keep the novel engaging despite the great deal of setup that occurs.
With seven books in the series already in print, it was clear that this was only the beginning and that Peloquin had barely scratched the surface. I am invested in The Hunter as a tortured hero. I am definitely planning on continuing the series as I suspect the world of Voramis will expand with new and interesting characters, more intense action, and more internal
conflict, as this very real and three-dimensional hero, continues on his mission. A fantastic series debut from a great voice in Epic Fantasy.
Review by Michael Gruneir
8.5/10 from 1 reviews
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