This digital reissue of an excellent 1999 fantasy in Smith’s Averraine Cycle stars Keridwen of Orliegh, youngest child of a minor house in the kingdom of Keraine. While seeking her fortune, Keri enters into military service with Lord Uln, who then turns traitor to his prince, Tirais. After the rebellion’s defeat and Uln’s flight, Keri is spared and sent to Penvarron, a posting for the kingdom’s misfit soldiers, where she earns the respect of her comrades. Together with the rest of the garrison, she interrupts a ritual by evil Camrhyssi priests who have infiltrated Penvarron’s ancient tower, where mystical forces still linger. Keridwen then finds herself in the company of powerful figures, including the very prince who pardoned her, trying to discover where foul magic may strike next. Though the mythologies differ, this feels much like Lois Bujold’s novels set in the World of the Five Gods. Keridwen is a wonderful protagonist to follow: a skilled soldier with something of a stubborn streak and a keen eye but no great powers. Smith’s terrific storytelling and worldbuilding will thrill fantasy fans. (BookLife)
Reviewed on: 11/14/2016 Release date: 04/01/2016 Genre: Fiction
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