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The Way of Shadows: The Night Angel Trilogy: Book 1 Mass Market Paperback – October 1, 2008

617 customer reviews
Book 1 of 3 in the Night Angel Trilogy Series

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Editorial Reviews


"What a terrific story! I was mesmerized from start to finish. Unforgettable characters, a plot that kept me guessing, non-stop action and the kind of in-depth storytelling that makes me admire a writer's work." --- Terry Brooks

"Kylar is a wonderful character - sympathetic and despicable, cowardly and courageous, honorable and unscrupulous...a breathtaking debut!" --- Dave Duncan

About the Author

Brent Weeks was born and raised in Montana. He wrote on bar napkins and lesson plans before landing his dream job years and thousands of pages later. Brent lives in Oregon with his wife, Kristi, and their daughter. Find out more about the author at or on twitter @brentweeks.

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Product Details

  • Series: The Night Angel Trilogy (Book 1)
  • Mass Market Paperback: 645 pages
  • Publisher: Orbit; 1st edition (October 1, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0316033677
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316033671
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1.5 x 6.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (617 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #47,755 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Brent Weeks was born and raised in Montana. After getting his paper keys from Hillsdale College, Brent had brief stints walking the earth like Caine from Kung Fu, tending bar, and corrupting the youth. (Not at the same time.) He started writing on bar napkins, then on lesson plans, then full time. Eventually, someone paid him for it. Brent lives in Oregon with his wife, Kristi. He doesn't own cats or wear a ponytail.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

178 of 191 people found the following review helpful By Scott Masterton VINE VOICE on October 13, 2008
Format: Mass Market Paperback
The Way of Shadows is the first in the Night Angel Trilogy by newcomer Brent Weeks. Let me start by saying that Brent Weeks writes action like Jet Li fights! He seems to have a good understanding of how action sequences flow and how to describe them in such a way that they are detailed without bogging down. Bravo.

The story begins with some frankly darkly disturbing descriptions of life on the streets which include child sexual abuse and extreme violence. Though The Way of Shadows is fiction, there is a sad truth in the darkness that these children face and the extreme actions that the fight for survival creates within humankind. This portion of the story could happen anywhere in any big city on Earth; and because of this Weeks' characters and motivations are believable and three dimensional. One of the mistakes that new fantasy writers often make is to become so excited by their magic and dragons that they forget that all good stories are about people. Brent Weeks I'm happy to say does not make this mistake. His story is about people and their motivations first and magic and abilities second. Our similarities bind us, but our differences make us interesting.

Young Azoth sells his soul to a "Devil" by the name of Durzo Blint in order to protect his friends Jaral and Doll-girl. Blint is a "wetboy" or super assassin, who's abilities are trained, but also a product of his "Talent" innate magic that augments his ninja-like skills. At first glance Blint is a complete sociopath with no connection to the humanity around him. Azoth turns out to have the abilities to become the physical equal of Durzo Blint, but the real story takes off when he is tested in order to discover if he has the heart (or lack thereof) to become a Wetboy.
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185 of 219 people found the following review helpful By Annihilatrix14 on October 4, 2008
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I picked this book up at random from Borders. Always had a weakness for assassin stories, and I was excited to be able to experience a new series from the beginning as it was being released.

To be perfectly blunt, "The Way of Shadows" is a great concept with some very professional execution. The protagonist is interesting to follow around as he is swept up from the life of a common street rat and into that of a calculating assassin, or "wetboy" (didn't care for the title, sounds funny), whilst under the tutelage of Cenaria's best-of-the-best killer for hire, Durzo Blint.

In stark contrast to the almost YA writing style, this book manages to pick up some very haunting themes including child abuse and prostitution. This makes the characters' ordeal that much more chilling, when they begin to find that the unforgiving life of the city is more of an enemy than anything else they've experienced. You can feel this presence of turmoil pick away at them slowly through the first pages, and then slip away as everyone makes their "escape" from the street life.

As for the assassin's journey, it's more than exceptional. The real drama of the story isn't in the actual killing at all, but in dealing with the very morality of the situation. Watching Kylar hesitate and choke as he attempted to take his first life was heart-stopping in itself.

The only real gripe I had with the book, and it is, unfortunately, a rather large one, is the story structure itself. As the book progresses, it seems that every named character gets their own perspective. I found myself getting absolutely absorbed into Kylar's story, and then, all of a sudden, I'm reading about someone else.
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72 of 84 people found the following review helpful By Andy Gray on November 3, 2008
Format: Mass Market Paperback
The Way of Shadows by Brent A. Weeks is the first novel in the Night Angel Trilogy. The second and third books are titled; Shadow's Edge (The Night Angel Trilogy) and Beyond the Shadows (The Night Angel Trilogy) respectively. I had never heard of Mr. Weeks before, but I was encouraged to read this book and give it a review. I have long been a proponent of giving new authors a shot, after all how else are we really going to know if they are any good or now. I need to stress I went into this novel without any preconceived ideas of what it would be like. Here are my thoughts on the novel.

The plot of this book, where do I start? Usually in this section of my reviews I hit on the key plot, and sub plot, points. Quite frankly though, there is so much that goes on in this novel that I would never be able to do it justice. So, please know that this section only covers a few pieces of the plot. One of the main plot lines, at least on the surface, is a little clichéd in that it is a coming of age story of an orphan turned assassin. But, that cliché is turned on its head with vivid details and a thorough entrenchment into the story. Most types of these stories follow the lines of, I am an orphan therefore I became an assassin. That is no where near what this part of the story is. In his novel we are allowed to see the progression of events and choices that force the character down this road. Another main plot line, which is more apparent later in the novel, is a political coup. The amount of delicate planning, subtle foreshadowing, and setting things up is brilliant.
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