Customer Reviews for

The Hob's Bargain

Average Rating 4.5
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Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 41 review with 4 star rating   See All Ratings
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  • Posted April 22, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    This story about mythical creatures in a magical land has a slightly adult tone and makes for light but pleasant escapist reading

    Patricia Briggs paints a rather complicated portrait of a world where everything is alive - the earth, the mountain (known as Hob's Mountain), and all of these things are somehow connected, along with countless other strange creatures that might be found in an HG Wells story.

    The lead character is a woman, as are many of the lead characters in Patricia Brigg's works. The woman lives in a mythical village, apparently in a time long ago. She finds she has some magical ability to forsee future events, including an attack by 'raiders' that results in the death of her new husband the day after their wedding. She laments that she did not use this vision to protect her new husband, but the culture does not respect people with magical gifts, and people often think of these gifted people as evil.

    However our heroine sees other evil events in the future, and sets out to warn the villagers, who cannot decide if she is a witch or a prophet. A huge earthquake fortells of the angry earth, and with her gifts, she sets out to help protect her village from the ravages of raiders, the anger of the earth, and the evil of the 'blood mages,' who are people with magic who have turned to the dark side.

    En route she meets the Hob, a strange creature who strikes a bargain and agrees to use his powers to help protect the village, hence the name of the book.

    As the book unfolds, our heroine learns to use her powers and together with the help of the Hob and other lead characters, she single-handedly helps the raiders join forces with the villagers to fight the evil of the blood-mages alongside the Hob.

    The story may seem too far-fetched to follow, but it is not. However the frequent introduction of new evil gnomes combined with other spirit-creatures is a bit difficult to follow, and takes away from the otherwise beautifully told story of a young woman's bravery and loyalty to her village and to her friends.

    The writer sometimes suddenly changes her perspective - telling of the thoughts of the heroine or of another character - with little warning. This makes it a bit difficult to follow at times, at least for me, and I consider myself a pretty intelligent reader.

    Also some areas of the book are not really brought to resolution. The temptress ghost appears periodically, but at the end of the book, I am not sure what happened to her. The many fighting creatures are sent scurrying away at different times - where did they end up going? I never did figure that out.

    Hob's bargain is a pleasant tale by a brilliant writer, but it does have moments when it is just a bit too complicated for the casual reader (which is me, of course) to follow every detail of every character. It is not quite as polished as her later works, in my opinion, but it is still a very good read with a strong moral fiber running through it that gives it a strength and consistency that is typical of this excellent author of fantasy works.

    8 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 15, 2001

    Absolutely wonderful

    I usually stick with other historical romances but this one was really great. It had the right amount of flirtation, humor and mystery. She kept me curious to want to know the end but not to the point that you would have become bored with it. I am looking forward to reading her other works in the future.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 30, 2009

    Good Early Work

    Those of you who first became familiar with Patricia Briggs, as I did, through her Mercy Thompson novels may find the setting of this one a little different, but if you wil bear with the beginning you will find the same charm in the writing that characterizes her later books. Characterization, as always, is excellent, and the writing itself makes the subject more accessible than it might otherwise be. The book is well worth reading.

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Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 41 review with 4 star rating   See All Ratings
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