- File Size: 3156 KB
- Print Length: 112 pages
- Publisher: Pocket Star (April 22, 2013)
- Publication Date: April 22, 2013
- Sold by: Simon and Schuster Digital Sales Inc
- Language: English
- ASIN: B009K54S6I
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Not Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,240,004 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
Simon and Schuster Digital Sales Inc
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Silent Warrior (The Dragon Kings) Kindle Edition
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Audio CD, Unabridged
|Length: 112 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
|Page Flip: Enabled||
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"SILENT WARRIOR is an edgy and violent tale that captivates and enthralls. It is set in a fantastical world with oddly-sympathetic characters that stand out in the paranormal genre. Looking forward to the next book in the series!" ~ The Romance Reviews, 5 Star Top Pick
"As you can imagine, if they fight so violently, they do other things with equal ferocity. This is definitively a super hot read. I can't wait to see this world expand and leap into another dark and sensual romance."~All Things Urban Fantasy
"The memorable main characters are instantly likable and grabbed me with their distinctive personalities. Lindsey Piper has constructed a very original world. SILENT WARRIOR is darkly imaginative and exceedingly sexy." ~Single Titles
"For a novella the world building is incredible, the grungy, dirty, crime ridden city breathes life into this story almost as much as the characters do. This was a such a compelling introduction to this series that I am putting the first book, CAGED WARRIOR, on my auto buy list. Grade: A" ~Fiction Vixen
From the Inside Flap
Wiping the sweat from his brow, Hark of Sath shut his know-it-all mouth. He wasn't used to being pessimistic, let alone muttering the crap. He focused on the feel of forged iron in his hands. A thousand details filtered into his senses. The concentrated stink of bar. The grit beneath his boots. The white glare of lights illuminating a space designated for fighting in the bar tournament.
And then there was the woman...
He recognized her as a fellow member of Clan Sath, but she didn't even seem to be of their rarified race. Too...other. She squared off in front of him, ready to continue steadily kicking his ass. He was angrier at himself than he was at the surprisingly adept amazon.
"Enough of this," he spat.
Hark countered her next attack with a combination of looping kicks, two clashes of his blade against her shield, and a quick roll. He sprang up and sank into a prepared stance. Loose knees. Relaxed thighs. He grinned at the expressionless woman and tossed the iron sword from hand to hand. Showing off. Sure. He'd won a lot more out of life by faking it than he had by behaving by the rules. Twisting reality to his vision was something of a specialty.
His opponent in the that shitty fight club in Hong Kong used her shield like a weapon, slicing the air. The lip of the shield was jagged, as if tipped with shark's teeth. Its solid weight made for a daunting hunk of metal. Hark dropped to one knee and lifted his sword lengthwise to blunt her downward strike. One hand on the handle was easy enough. Holding the blunt side of the blade in his left hand, however--that hurt. The iron dug into his palm. It wasn't sharp enough to cut skin, but the desperate defensive move would leave him with a broken bone or two.
Despite the pain, his bones would heal with the sped of the Dragon Kings.
He rolled again, aiming at the woman's shins. She skipped over one slashing attack. His second blow--a twisting backhand--caught her left Achilles' tendon. She fell to one side. Even sprawled on the ground and wounded, she'd lifted her shield. No backing down.
And not a single sound.
"Do you ever say anything?" Hark clenched and loosened his injured hand as they both took a breather. The crowd jeered. They threw beer bottles and what looked like dead rats. "That did hurt, right? My sword? Your ankle? But I get nothing. A little grunt would be nice--something to tell me I'm doing a good job. Or maybe to toy with my head. Mock me. I can take it."
Even the white spotlights didn't brighten the pure black of her eyes. Something other than determination shone from those dark depths. Humor. His suspicion was confirmed when the corner of her mouth tipped into the saddest excuse for a smile. The mocking he'd expected was there, but it remained unspoken.
Great. That was his reward. He might as well hand over his balls and call the fight in her favor.
She was unnerving. And he couldn't remember the last time he'd been so fascinated with a woman.
"Ok, fine. I get it. Strong silent type? I thought that was reserved for cops and guys in movies, but I can adapt." He hefted his sword and winked. "I'm modern. Feminists don't intimidate me."
She was more than a feminist, if the word even registered. Expression sober, she didn't react to his wink or his barb. She was as quiet as the condensation that covered the walls of the bar.
Hark had thought himself better able to read his own kind. The Children of the Dragon were masters of small moves when it came to demonstrating emotion. Or hiding them. They weren't nearly so animated as humans that laughed, cried, shrank with fear, and used hand gestures that bordered on manic--this from a guy who talked more than every Dragon King in the Far East.
The tall, gracefully thin woman rose to her feet. Blood trickled down the back of her injured ankle. She walked with a slight limp, but nothing about her posture suggested it was time to call it quits. Her skin held the golden sheen of their people--the appearance of a tan no matter the exposure to sun--yet the lights leeched most color. With white-blond hair, she was pale on pale with the flashes of black fire in her eyes.
And she was collared.
At one time in her past, or maybe even now, she belonged to one of the three human cartels who traded in the flesh and brawn of Dragon Kings. The collar meant her gift as a Sath--to borrow the abilities of other Dragon Kings--was dampened. She needed to fight like a human, no matter their people's remarkable capacity for recovering from physical injury.
Not that Hark was in any better position, without another Dragon King's gift to leech.
If she belonged to one of the cartels, what was she was doing rolling around in sawdust with him? Hark knew his reasons. Fighting scrubbed the details of how he'd wound up in the Sham Shui Po district of Kowloon City, but one word remained.
Ugh. He hated that word.
The woman wore lightweight armor. That and the weapons they wielded elevated this particular tournament above a bar room brawl, as money changed hands on impromptu wagers.
Hark was protected by armor too, but it wasn't molded to his frame. The metal and leather were as cumbersome as his weighty, ridiculously blunt sword. He supposed he should be thankful. It would've better to wear a giant soup can than face this woman in street clothes.
He'd been thinking about it all wrong.
Would-be combatants chomped at the bit for their turn in the tournament, and they were clearly bored of Hark's piss-poor performance. Stab the new guy! He has a small dick! Whether in Mandarin or the more common Cantonese, the insults were easy to guess.
But Hark wasn't finished. He tossed the sword aside. It landed with a dull thud and skidded a few inches in the slippery sawdust.
"It's hot in here," he said, fanning his face dramatically. "If there's anything I cannot stand, it's an overly-warm arena of death."
He went about unlatching his armor. The amazon froze. She didn't grind to a halt like the Tin Man needing oil, but stopped as if the Dragon had flipped a switch. Animate to inanimate within a heartbeat. Only her eyes gave her away. Roving. Probing. She gobbled up the details of his movements. Leather arm guards and his soup can breastplate fell away as he untied the straps. When the last piece hit the blood-spattered sawdust floor, her lips parted.
He liked taking her by surprise. He could get used to that.
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Silent Warrior is the prequel to Lindsey Piper's new paranormal series. The novella centers on two Dragon King characters - Silence and Hark. Having no idea what Dragon Kings were or what this series was about, I decided to try this out because of the good ratings. Upon completion, I'm still hazy about the details of this world.
Silence, a collared Cage warrior for the Aster Cartel, vows to return honor to Clan Sath, who are referred to as "the Thiefs" by the other four Dragon King clans - Indranan ("the Heartless") Pendray ("the Reapers"), Tigony ("the Tricksters"), and Garnis ("the Lost") -- due to their covetous nature. A forseer's words hover in her mind. Hark is trying to earn money to repay his outstanding debts. The Kawashima Cartel wants their money! He's in deep poop! The action-packed beginning commences in a gladiator-style Cage match in Hong Kong. They skillfully cut, slash, and beat each other leading to an excess of energy they know how to dispel after the fight. Throw in some steamy sexy times and the Kawashimas and the game is on.
I rubbed my hands with glee thinking I had found a new dark paranormal romance I could dig my teeth into. While the beginning started with a bang, the details of this world were a combination of too much and too little. The terminology use lost me a few times. I also didn't know how the pieces fit and what I was supposed to be looking for. (What does it mean to belong to a cartel? What are Dragon Kings? What is the function of the cartel in this world? Why are the Dragon Kings nearly extinct? What are their powers? Are they immortal? What's their deal? Who, what, why, when, how, where, and so on. ) More questions arose as some were answered.
I'll attribute the lean story to this being a novella. If there had been a glossary explaining the Dragon King world and if the focus would have been on the protagonists building relationship - I think the novella would have been meatier. As it is, Silent Warrior encourages me to believe that Lindsey Piper's series will have loads of action, hot lovin', and a different type of romance that I am craving.
[A glossary is located on Lindsey Piper's author page. It will help readers! (It helped me.)]
The book had a lot of action. The characters were intrigued me. I just wish there had been some explanation of the world building. It's a short pre-quel so I understand there wasn't going to be a lot, but there really wasn't any explanation of their world. If I understood what a Dragon King was, what powers they had and how the Cartels fit in I would have enjoyed it alot more. I didn't understand all the terminology in the book and there wasn't a glossary to help out either.
I will read the first book and hope to see more world building and explanation. It has such potential if I can just figure it out.
The story opens in the middle of a fight between two Dragon King warriors from the Sath clan, dressed in armor with their choice of weapons. They use whatever skills they have to fight for a win. Silence is a Caged Warrior from the Aster Cartel who finds herself struggling to outmatch Hark, whose debt forces him to fight for money.
Silence and Hark's alternating point-of-views throughout the story are effective in providing greater insight into their motivations and vulnerabilities. Since volunteering to fight for the Aster Cartel, the woman known as Silence has never spoken a word to anyone. Her persona is a direct contrast to the easy going, talkative Hark, who finds her silence unnerving. His goal besides winning is to make her say something. While Silence intimidates Hark by remaining wordless, he tries to throw her off balance with his excessive talking and atypical behavior.
Although Silence and Hark have contrasting personalities, they manage to fall in love while running from enemies in Hong Kong. Their contentious bantering along with their secret revelations make this story an engaging read. Overall, this short work is packed with action and suspense and leaves you with an uncertainty about Silence and Hark's future. Because of the story's brevity, I accepted the "insta-love" between Silence and Hark, even though it is unrealistic, given the time frame.
I already knew the outcome of this story because Silence and Hark continue to play a role in Caged Warrior. Still, I was glad to learn their backstory and the tenderness behind their union. The sacrifice that Hark is willing to make for Silence is touching.
On the other hand, I was disappointed to find that this prequel did not help me to better understand this fascinating world Piper has created. In fact, I think I would have been more confused about the sequence of events if I had not already read book one. The lack of explanation about the history and current existence of the Dragon Kings kept me from being fully immersed in this fantasy.
Top international reviews
Die Drachenkrieger waren einst ein mächtiges Volk, gegliedert in fünf feindliche Stämme. Übrig geblieben sind noch einige Tausend, die sich vom normalen Volk vor allem durch schnelle Heilung von Wunden und starke Kräfte unterscheiden. Oft verdingen sie sich als Kämpfer, um den Lebensunterhalt zu bestreiten, ihre Sitten sind hart und brutal.
Die Kämpferin Silence trägt das Sklavenhalsband von Asters, für den sie Käfigkämpfe bestreitet. In einem Kampf in Hong Kong trifft sie auf den mächtigen Kämpfer Hark, der vom gleichen Drachenkriegerclan stammt wie sie. Der Kampf endet unentschieden und die Nacht endet zusammen im Bett.
Wie vom Inhalt her zu erwarten, ist die Geschichte und auch die Sprache nichts für Zartbesaitete, obwohl sie durchaus romantische Elemente enthält. Als Einstieg in eine neue Fantasiewelt für Erwachsene interessant, obwohl noch wenig Charakterentwicklung und Informationen, lässt die Anlage auf spannende Fortsetzungen hoffen.