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Deathsworn Arc 2 : The Verkreath Horror (Volume 2) Paperback – October 22, 2013
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"Characters are very deep and I genuinely felt the desperation, sadness and occasional happiness each one conveyed throughout." - Just Me
About the Author
Martyn Stanley is the author of 'The Deathsworn Arc' a epic fantasy adventures series dragons. He lives near the Staffordshire/Cheshire border in England, with his long suffering wife and two small children. Martyn has always enjoyed epic fantasy novels and began reading them at a young age, starting with 'The Hobbit', ending with 'The Inheritance Cycle' and including everything in between. His 'Deathsworn Arc' is more than a hack and slash, swords and sorcery series. It examines, faith, companionship, morality, pragmatism and more. If the characters of 'The Deathsworn Arc' come across as strange, it's partly because they're intended to. It isn't a series which will be dragged out indefinitely, it has a beginning, a middle and a definite end. He already has the plot for his second series forming in his head. To write is to create characters and to have freedom for them to succeed or fail and to travel wherever you want them to, and meet who ever you want them to meet. He sincerely hopes you enjoy reading his epic fantasy adventure series 'The Deathsworn Arc' as much as he enjoyed writing it. http://martynstanley.com https://www.facebook.com/DeathswornArc http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/16060522-deathsworn-arc-1 http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17610477-deathsworn-arc-2 http://www.shelfari.com/series/Deathsworn http://www.bookjunkiesjournal.com/martyn-stanley.html
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Top customer reviews
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That awkward moment when the dwarf is more badass than the imperial wizard.
The Verkreath Horror is definitely more gritty than its predecessor. After battling a noble dragon and losing two of their comrades, our remaining warriors start their journey back to the Empress in Cormaroth. They are delayed by a plague-ridden town, and a powerful group of dragon aficionados is starting to form – and they are not amused. Our heroes are forced to hide underground, which houses another gruesome evil: the verkreath. These are sentient rat-people who are nasty and have no mercy. We follow our heroes as they run from one danger to the next. Their stamina as well as their faith is being tested to the max.
I thought this was a very decent sequel to The Last Dragon Slayer. I loved the fact that we got to know a lot more about the dwarfish culture; how they live, how they build their homes, etc. Votrex was really in his element here. Not just with explaining everything, but also in fights. Seriously, that dwarf is so badass it’s not even fair anymore. What a character. Absolutely brilliant.
Saul’s powers still left me disappointed, but I get the reasoning behind it – for a human wizard, he’s pretty powerful, but compared to Vashni and, hopefully, Brael, who’ve had centuries and even millennia to hone their skills, Saul’s powers just don’t come across as very impressive. Still hoping he’ll become more awesome.
In this book, Brael is finally able to tell “The Truth”, which leaves all the characters questioning their faith. I can imagine it’s pretty shocking to them, but as a reader, it was a little underwhelming. I’m still very interested in how Brael has managed to discover all of this, because it’s pretty huge. Hopefully that will be dealt with in a sequel. I also cannot wait for Brael to have his curse lifted, so he can finally demonstrate his awesome magic skills.
Vashni was a lot more tolerable in this book, maybe because she simply didn’t have the time to pester Korhan. She’s actually grown to care for the man and spends most of the book trying to heal him. She’s a lot less distant and finally starts to see her travelling partners as friends, which was really nice. I might even like her now.
The theme of the book is a lot darker – they’re grieving for their fallen comrades, but they also don’t have time to rest from slaying the dragon. Everyone is hurt and tired, yet they’re always on the run from something or someone. They also spend most of the book underground, and “The Truth” will definitely shake their religious foundations. It's not heavy, though. The tone is made lighter because you learn a lot of things in conversation. The characters are always talking and learning about gravian and dwarfish culture, and that made it easier to bear. All in all, it was a solid sequel.
The Verkreath Horror is even better than the first book of the series. The author's writing is confident, descriptive and more visceral, especially in battle but also in all sensory aspects of the different scenes. The Verkreath are a challenging addition, lots of fantastical and frankly horrific elements come with them, and it's all handled well and ups the tension intensely. I admire the way the author stayed true to each character, really allowing each type of being to be shown with their particular gifts as unique and important, like when Votrex rises to leadership with his dwarfian expertise of the underground tunnels.The warrens are claustrophobic and the author works the tension here very skillfully. As a reader I'm confronted with the question: would I have what it takes to triumph over underground savages to complete my quest? All of the details, plot developments and descriptions are fascinating and make Arc 2 a great read.
More than that, what I also really like is the truthseeking aspect of the story. There is a subtext about how important it is to keep an open mind, how we might shrink our minds to survive stress but that our strength, like the spells herein, come from openness and focus, and our peril comes from drawing within, and our weakness is revealed in a delusion of not appreciating this one life. Great stuff to think about, and another reason the Deathsworn series is an epic fantasy for our times. There's more to come...the quest keeps growing in scope and in need for wrongs to be avenged, so we have a lot to look forward to.
I read the first book and I can guarantee that you won’t regret getting them both. Martyn is so great at introducing the characters and makes you feel their struggles and desperation. That’s it, no spoilers on this review.
He provides maps and images of the character to keep you hooked in the story. By just the way he describes the events, I can almost imagine their faces and fear. There were gruesome events as well that left marks on my memory.
As for the writing, I felt that the middle part of the book was a bit slow but that didn’t affect my over-all experience reading. This is a series and I know that he can’t miss describing a part that will become essential in the upcoming books. He made every effort to avoid plot holes. He carefully describes the events, the people and places that are involved in each story and makes sure that everything falls into the right place. The conflicts, the battles, humors and the story. They just work so well.
Great writing on this installment.
Most recent customer reviews
The characters in this fantasy tale are what make it an excellent read, that and the...Read more