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The Darkwood Mask: The Inquisitives Mass Market Paperback – March 4, 2008
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Top Customer Reviews
Eberron is considered a pulp-fantasy wonderland mixed with a dark nourish twist that creates wonderful opportunities for outlandish adventure plots, or sinister, complex mysteries. What we get in this novel is a little bit of both! The story, as with the previous three books, has as the main character, an Inquisitive, Eberron's version of the great detective. Soneste works for Thuranne d'Valderan's Investigative Services out of Sharn, city of Towers in the land of Breland. Soneste is coming into her own, as she has begun to garner fame for two recent high-profile jobs in which she was responsible for rescuing a royal aide and bringing to justice a serial killer. However, a request from her boss to travel to the neighboring country of Karnnath to help solve the murder of a Brelish aide visiting there leads to a plot that would certainly bring the two nations to war.
The story also involves Tallis, an ex-Karnnathi soldier-turned-renegade whose chief purpose in life is to bring down the enemies of Karnnath, but, at the same time, must hide from Karnnathi officials due to his "Robin-Hood-like" tactics. At first, we are led to believe that this is a straight-forward murder mystery, albeit with some interesting twists and turns. Soneste is a psionic, ability to use mental powers to assist her in her investigations, which doesn't take away from her innate ability to notice her surroundings. She would be a good inquisitive even without her mental talents.Read more ›
The plot of this novel is rather linear, on the surface anyway. It comes across as a very typical murder/mystery with a couple predictable elements, such as a young up and coming Inquisitor , a murder of a prominent dignitary with political ramifications, we also have a rogue who is a thorn in the local city guard's side who is promptly framed for the murder. As a fan of the fantasy genre, I have read this basic plot numerous times - some better than others. However, what Mr. LaSala does with the bones of this plot really makes it come to life. The added sub plots are near perfect.Read more ›
The book centers around two main characters, Soneste Otansin, a recently successful inquisitive from Sharn send to Korth to investigate the murder of a Brelish ambassador, and Tallis, a Karrnathi ex-soldier wanted by Karrnathi officials for dispensing his own kind of justice.
There are multiple stories lines that weave deftly through the book. One of the most interesting parts of the book are the "Interludes" that give the reader a bit more insight into past events and further add to the mysterious feel of the book.
Mr. LaSala does a great job giving the reader a feel for the politics of Breland and Karnathi from an outsider's (Soneste) point of view. This makes her job all the more difficult but also gives the reader broader understanding of events in the Last War and just how tenuous peace really is between the nations.
And the best for last, Mr. LaSala's prose. I love the way he writes. The words flow and never feel choppy or disjointed. As a reader, you get to use your imagination by getting just enough description that you can fill in the rest. I really like when a writer uses techniques like this. It makes the story much more memorable.
The Darkwood Mask is out of print in it physical version but has reached immortality as an ebook, it has been re-released in electronic format for the Kindle and Nook.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Probably the best of the standalone Eberron novels. A little gritty, but in all the right ways.Published 10 days ago by Carcosa Hali
Jeff LaSala's "The Darkwood Mask" is one of those books you come across and wish you had written. Blending fantasy with a murder mystery, LaSala weaves his way through an intricate... Read morePublished on June 2, 2013 by BWMatthews
This the last book in the Inquisitive Series.
I found it mildly amusing to see references to Long Night of Shadows and Bound by Iron made by way of Abraxis Wren's name... Read more
GREAT STORY IS BOOK IS ONE OF MY FAVORITE BOOK I READ FROM THIS SERIES... THE CHARACTER AND PLOT WAS AWESOME. I GIVE THIS ONE 5 OUT OF 5.. MUST READ BOOK.. Read morePublished on July 14, 2008 by Jose Rosa
I don't normally read game-based books these days. It's not that I have anything against them as a rule (I used to read them in high school), but since I'm long past my RPG-playing... Read morePublished on May 29, 2008 by Christopher Torgersen
I've just finished my second reading of The Darkwood Mask. I'm not an avid WotC reader, but have read every book in The Inquisitives cycle, and have been thoroughly impressed by... Read morePublished on May 28, 2008 by Joshua Wentz
I was up til 3 in the morning finishing this book. I've very impressed that this is Mr. LaSalad's first published novel. Read morePublished on May 10, 2008 by S. Simar
Overall this was a very well written book, but I have my gripes about it.
First off, for all the grandeur and depth the plot accumulated through the book, the ending was... Read more