Brayan's Gold

Having enjoyed Peter V. Brett's The Painted Man/The Warded Man (Canada, USA, Europe), but with no time to plunge into its sequel, The Desert Spear (Canada, USA, Europe), I was glad for the opportunity to revisit Brett's universe, if only for the duration of a novella.

A friend convinced Brett to pen this novella during the short break the author allowed himself between finishing The Desert Spear and starting The Daylight War.

Here's the blurb:

Return to the world of The Warded Man and The Desert Spear in an illustrated new novella by Peter V. Brett.

Humanity has been brought to the brink of extinction. Each night, the world is overrun by demons—bloodthirsty creatures of nightmare that have been hunting the surface for over 300 years. A scant few hamlets and half-starved city-states are all that remain of a once proud civilization, and it is only by hiding behind wards, ancient symbols with the power to repel the demons, that they survive. A handful of Messengers brave the night to keep the lines of communication open between the increasingly isolated populace.

Arlen Bales is seventeen, an apprentice Messenger in brand new armor, about to go out for the first time alongside a trained Messenger on a simple overnight trip. Instead Arlen finds himself alone on a frozen mountainside, carrying a dangerous cargo to Count Brayan’s gold mine, one of the furthest points in the duchy. And One Arm, the giant rock demon, hunts him still.

But Brayan’s Gold may offer a way for Arlen to be free of One Arm forever, if he is willing to wager his life on the chance

As was the case with Brett's The Great Bazaar and Other Stories, although Brayan's Gold is part of a vaster story, this novella works perfectly as a stand-alone. Then again, unless you are already a fan of Brett's series, I doubt that readers would buy such a limited edition. Still, whether you are a fan or a newbie, you won't have any trouble following the action.

Though the novella was essentially an indulgence Brett allowed himself for the sake of writing about snow demons, Brayan's Gold feature a younger Arlen, one who's just beginning his training as a Messenger. As such, it gives the author a chance to explore a different locale from his universe, while telling a tale that helps flesh out one of his main protagonists even more. I found it particularly interesting how various wards were used to heat the waystation and the inn.

All in all, Brayan's Gold is an entertaining read and a worthy addition to the canon of Peter V. Brett's Demon Cycle. For those of you who can't wait till The Daylight War is released, this novella should help take care of your Brett fix.

The final verdict: 7.5/10

For more info about this title, check out the Subpress website.

1 commentaires:

Lagomorph Rex said...

I had initially upon completion of the Warded Man thought of purchasing this.. until I saw the cost.

I hope that one of these days it will find its way into a less expensive omnibus format release much the same way the Malazan novellas have.

I have thus far been unimpressed with the desert spear.. chiefly because it made me wait nearly 1/3 of the book to continue the stories of the characters from the first book.. It's a rare thing for me to read a book in two sittings.. I did so with the Warded man.

However, because of a distinct lack of interest on my part in the comings and goings of the Krasians.. I've taken a some what more relaxed approach to this second book.. in other words.. I just can't be bothered.