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The Horsemen's Gambit (Blood of the Southlands, Book 2) Hardcover – January 8, 2008
David B. Coe created a richly textured, unique world in his Winds of the Forelands, and topped himself with The Sorcerer's Plague, his first novel set in the Southlands of the same world. Divided by clan rivalries and ancient feuds, suspicious of magics wielded by longtime enemies, the folk of the South have lived in a state of truce for generations. But peace is shattered when a woman looses a deadly plague on the magical Qirsi people.
While some people seek to prevent the spread of the plague, others see in this disaster a unique opportunity. With the magical folk weakened by the decimation of the plague, their unmagical enemies might be able to defeat them and take back lands lost in an ancient war. Haunted by the specter of what would be a tragic and devastating new war, the Southlands are aflame with rumors of violence, pestilence, and treachery.
Coe weaves together engagingly complex characters, unique, unusual magic, political intrigue and a compelling, unpredictable story into a captivating epic that will enthrall fantasy readers. A potent brew conjured by a masterful storyteller.
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From Publishers Weekly
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Praise for The Sorcerer's Plague:
"The Sorcerer's Plague satisfies with sharply-drawn characters and an intense, intelligent plot. I eagerly await the next book of the Southlands." —Kate Elliott, bestselling author of Spirit Gate
"Coe’s new series is his best yet: appealing characters, twisty plot, and absorbing world."—Sherwood Smith on The Sorcerer’s Plague
- Publisher : Tor Books; 1st edition (January 8, 2008)
- Language : English
- Hardcover : 368 pages
- ISBN-10 : 0765316390
- ISBN-13 : 978-0765316394
- Item Weight : 1.3 pounds
- Dimensions : 6.55 x 1.21 x 9.41 inches
- Customer Reviews:
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The Eandi peddlers sell her infected baskets to the unsuspecting Qirsi without relaizing that they are cursing the villagers they leave behind with a nasty death from their in demand product. With many villages eradicated as the epidemic spreads, the survivors believe the Eandi peddlers are killing them as they seem immune to the curse. Meanwhile from the Forelands, Eandi Captain Tirnya Onjaef leads a force south to conquer the stunned Qirsi while Grinsa the Weaver tries to escape incarceration by the Fal'Borna so that he can locate Lici and persuade her to end the plague. There is two problems for him and his allies; first escaping will not be easy and second they are susceptible to the customized lethal disease.
The second book of the Blood of the Southlands is a superb fantasy tale that not only avoids the mid book set up syndrome, but enhances the tension between the clans as each blames the other for their problems. Lici is a bit more off stage this time as her efforts have proven fruitful. Fans will relish this entry for its deep look into the social, political, economic and military interactions between the three distrusting groups; ignorance and racism are the norm with the hostilities turning the Southlands into a large killing field.
Although the solid plot exists in a wonderfully written novel, the rather predictable story containing a couple exciting moments mostly follows two additional groups. The Mettai's Besh and Sirj travel with the captured Lici seeking her cursed baskets. Grinsa and Q'Daer journey with two merchants to track down the infamous Lici and her baskets. Tirnya becomes involved with internal political and military maneuvers due to the weakened Fal'Borna. Finally Cresenne and Bryntelle receive a couple chapters explaining their time in E'Menua Fal'Borna sept.
Even after expecting more from the author, I still recommend this series to any fan of the fantasy genre.