Young clansman Raif has a touch of "old blood" magic that guides his arrows to the heart. Bad times come when a hunting party that includes his father and clan chief is wiped out by a supernaturally aided attack, and Raif's open suspicion of the brutal new leader eventually drives him into exile. Meanwhile, Iss, overlord of Spire Vanis city, keeps a chained-up sorcerer whose powers he channels by revolting means, and has unexplained but shuddersome plans for his "foster daughter" Ash--herself an unwilling focus of dread forces. Raif and Ash find themselves fleeing together through wintry, hostile clanlands, pursued by Iss's vilest henchmen, seeking the dubious goal of the Cavern of Black Ice.
What lifts this tale far above routine quest fantasy is Jones's deft characterization, relentless intensity, and unsparing depiction of pain and slow-healing injury. She has a flair for memorably horrid images. Here a sorcerer gloats over one of his nastier tricks: "A man could not fight when his corneas were snapped from his eyes like badges from a chest."
This hefty volume is over 800 pages long, but the narrative grips hard once it's gained momentum, and the pages turn increasingly fast. Strong meat. Next comes book two, A Fortress of Grey Ice. --David Langford, Amazon.co.uk --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
fascinating world, the dangers kept me on the edge of my seat. Looking forward to the next novel.Published 2 months ago by Joel M. Elfman
This did not do it for me at all - the characters were unoriginal, the plot boring, and there was no driving force other than the characters going from place to place, fighting,... Read morePublished 6 months ago by Joe
Loved this book. Bought it and read it many years ago and have continued with the whole series. different from the normal rubbish where a damn dragon pops up. Read morePublished 8 months ago by Marie Henry
Overall a good fast paced read along the same lines of game of thrones. if u like fantasy give a cavern of black ice a chance. Read morePublished 11 months ago by Blake Peterson
I learned of this series when it was ranked in the top 20 best fantasy series on a poll on SFFworld.com's forum. Read morePublished 12 months ago by Art
Really did not enjoy this book at all. Dark, dismal, and cold with no bright spots or joy whatsoever. For crying out loud, let the protagonist enjoy one night of his life. Read morePublished 13 months ago by The Hoser
A differnt time and world of ice and snow. Some places dragged. The end picks up. I will read the rest of the series.Published 16 months ago by Deborah
The story grabs you from the start and the characters are hugely likable and in-depth. The world is well though out and is complex without being boring.Published 17 months ago by Tammilee Pike
I was completely bored by this and gave up on it about a 3rd of the way in. I'm generally not to picky about fantasy books so this is a very rare thing for me.Published 20 months ago by Krilex