Shadow Prowler (Chronicles of Siala 1) by Alexey Pehov
After centuries of calm, the Nameless One is stirring.
An army is gathering; thousands of giants, ogres, and other creatures are joining forces from all across the Desolate Lands, united, for the first time in history, under one, black banner. By the spring, or perhaps sooner, the Nameless One and his forces will be at the walls of the great city of Avendoom.
Unless Shadow Harold, master thief, can find some way to stop them.
Epic fantasy at its best, Shadow Prowler is the first in a trilogy that follows Shadow Harold on his quest for a magic Horn that will restore peace to the Kingdom of Siala. Harold will be accompanied on his quest by an Elfin princess, Miralissa, her elfin escort, and ten Wild Hearts, the most experienced and dangerous fighters in their world.and by the king’s court jester (who may be more than he seems – or less). (Goodreads)
This is the first book in a popular Russian fantasy serie. There were times that I regretted that I haven’t read Russian so I could have read the original edition. It started little slow but got better towards the end. Mainly because it took far too long to Harold to actually leave to the quest, but after he does things started rolling smoothly.
A thief called Harold is framed into stealing an object before being recruited by the king to the most dangerous burglary in his life. He has to steal a Horn from Hrad Spein. He gets help from people from different races; dwarf, gnome, goblin, elves and human warrior group called The Wild Hearts. The elves are no Tolkien-elves but are nearly as ugly as orcs with fangs.
The book’s sales have been decreasing lately due to popular things like e-commerce and other platforms taking over. The digital world has caused physical booksales to decrease dramatically and this one is no exception. The author has tried overcoming objections in sales but it’s been a tough road with giants like Amazon having so much power in the industry.
I liked the snarky, quirky Harold. The story is told from his point of view in first person so we get good look what goes on in his head. It reminded me of David Edding’s Belgarion-serie.
All in all, I found the book good and I’ll definitely read the next one!
Published: Simon & Schuster UK (2010)
Source: won at giveaway