Candle in the Storm (Shadowed Path Series #2) [NOOK Book]

Overview

The malign shadow of the Devourer has darkened the land, extinguishing life and hope. The followers of the benevolent goddess Karm are hunted mercilessly and cut down by an army of bewitched slayers led by Lord Bahl, the Devourer’s flesh-and-blood incarnation. Only two people stand in the way of an apocalyptic bloodbath that will literally bring hell to earth: a man and a woman linked by a love as strong as it is unlikely–Honus, a grim-faced warrior dedicated to Karm, and Yim, a...
See more details below
Candle in the Storm (Shadowed Path Series #2)

Available on NOOK devices and apps  
  • NOOK Devices
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 NOOK
  • NOOK HD/HD+ Tablet
  • NOOK
  • NOOK Color
  • NOOK Tablet
  • Tablet/Phone
  • NOOK for Windows 8 Tablet
  • NOOK for iOS
  • NOOK for Android
  • NOOK Kids for iPad
  • PC/Mac
  • NOOK for Windows 8
  • NOOK for PC
  • NOOK for Mac
  • NOOK for Web

Want a NOOK? Explore Now

NOOK Book (eBook)
$7.99
BN.com price

Overview

The malign shadow of the Devourer has darkened the land, extinguishing life and hope. The followers of the benevolent goddess Karm are hunted mercilessly and cut down by an army of bewitched slayers led by Lord Bahl, the Devourer’s flesh-and-blood incarnation. Only two people stand in the way of an apocalyptic bloodbath that will literally bring hell to earth: a man and a woman linked by a love as strong as it is unlikely–Honus, a grim-faced warrior dedicated to Karm, and Yim, a beautiful former slave with the divine power to stop Lord Bahl.

But that power will prove a terrible curse as Yim is called upon to make a costly sacrifice–a sacrifice that will not only put her love for Honus to the test but call into question her very faith. As the evil storm descends, can the flame of hope endure?

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780345516763
  • Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 10/27/2009
  • Series: Shadowed Path Series , #2
  • Sold by: Random House
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 240
  • Sales rank: 248,385
  • File size: 3 MB

Meet the Author

Morgan Howell is the author of A Woman Worth Ten Coppers, the first book in the Shadowed Path trilogy, as well as the Queen of the Orcs trilogy: King’s Property, Clan Daughter, and Royal Destiny. A graduate of Oberlin College and the Rochester Institute of Technology, Howell lives in upstate New York.
Read More Show Less

Read an Excerpt

Candle in the Storm

The Shadowed Path Book 2
By Morgan Howell

Del Rey

Copyright © 2009 Morgan Howell
All right reserved.

ISBN: 9780345503978

Chapter One


Summer’s heat had settled on Bremven, and the air was stultifying. When the sun rose high in the clear sky, the guards at the city’s gate retreated into the shade beneath its archway. From there, they checked all who entered. One unlucky soldier stood in the sun to warn his comrades if a Sarf approached. Sweltering in his armor, he gazed down the length of the bridge, looking for any man with a tattooed face. Sarfs were deadly, and after the destruction of Karm’s temple, the guards had cause to be wary of the goddess’s servants. Only six days earlier, a Sarf had slain an entire squad when they tried to bar his entry. Thus, despite the heat, fear kept the soldier alert.

 A diverse throng crossed the bridge leading to the empire’s capital. There were merchants driving wagons, farmers with their oxcarts, the rich on horse back, and the poor afoot. Nowhere was a blue face that signaled trouble. Then one horse man stood out in the crowd. He rode a magnificent black steed. His robe was a similar shade, marking him as a priest of the Devourer. All his kind were officially welcome. While the priest posed no threat, the soldier couldn’t takehis gaze from him. The dark rider looked young, barely into his twenties, and he had the sandy hair and gray eyes of someone from Averen. The deep tan of his clean- shaven face set off those pale eyes, and even from a distance they drew the soldier’s attention. The guard had the disturbing impression that those gray orbs didn’t belong in a young face. The priest seemed aware of the man’s scrutiny, for he formed his lips into a cold smile and made the sign of the circle with a casual twist of his wrist. The soldier respectfully bowed his head, relieved for a reason to look away. 

The black- robed man entered the city and disappeared into its crowded streets. 

As he rode through his birthplace, the More Holy Daijen noted many changes. The respect the guard had shown him was but the first. When he had fled Bremven eighty years ago, followers of the Devourer were in disrepute. Now everyone bows, he thought. It marks how we’ve risen in the world. Through ruthlessness and cunning, Daijen had risen similarly within the cult. He was the More Holy One, second only to the Most Holy Gorm in gifts and powers. Reflecting upon his rise, Daijen was tempted to visit the squalid alley where he had grown up. He thought how amazed his former neighbors would be to see him young and strong while age had withered them. Daijen quickly dismissed the idea. There’d be no point. Everyone I knew is likely dead.

 
Daijen’s eyes lifted from the ancient street and the stone buildings that flanked it until they gazed on the Temple Mount. Karm’s temple crowned its heights with stonework cunningly blended with the mountain’s natural form. Daijen smiled when he thought how the centuries- old edifice stood empty. The Most Holy Gorm, undoubtedly informed by sorcery, had told him of the massacre there. All who resided within the sanctuary had been slain— the Seers who divined the goddess’s will; those training to be Bearers, the holy persons who spread Karm’s word; and the young men who trained to be Sarfs, the deadly servants and protectors of Bearers. The temple’s destruction hadn’t eradicated the worship of the goddess, but it had been a fatal blow. Bearers and Sarfs still roamed the countryside, but they were like worker bees whose hive had been destroyed. They had nowhere to return, and when they perished, they would not be replaced. Daijen directed his horse toward Karm’s temple, eager to visit the site of his cult’s triumph. As the road neared his destination, Daijen paused to view the city and appreciate how the Devourer’s temple dominated it. Lord Bahl— the cult’s patron— had spared no expense, and the massive black stone temple with its seven pointed spires was an impressive sight. Yet Daijen imagined the day when that structure would be dwarfed by another one that stabbed the sky from atop the mount he was ascending. He envisioned a forest of black spires supplanting Karm’s ruined sanctuary and long lines of prisoners being led up the road for sacrifice. It was a stirring vision and one that Daijen was dedicated to realize.

 The recent triumph, however glorious, was not the reason for the More Holy One’s visit. A far more serious matter had caused him to ride far and fast. Soon after the massacre, an enemy had thwarted the Devourer within Karm’s temple. The nature of the deed and its perpetrator were a mystery. The only certain thing was that Daijen must discover and destroy that enemy. The assignment was a perilous one. Ever suspicious, Daijen assumed that was why the Most Holy One had chosen him for the task. The Devourer was a harsh god that punished failure, and Daijen feared his true age would swiftly overtake him if he was unsuccessful. It was a fate he’d do anything to avoid. 

Daijen entered Karm’s temple, a place he hadn’t seen since he was a teenager. He was mildly surprised that he remembered it after so many de cades and was pleased to find its outer courtyard stained with blood. It was evident that many had been slain there and their bodies dragged deeper into the temple. Daijen followed a reddish brown trail across the courtyard, through a building with a huge shattered basin, across a second courtyard, and into a huge building with irregularly spaced stone columns carved to resemble trees. He passed through that building and arrived at the remains of a pyre in a central garden. 

Blackened bones were piled waist- high, and gray ash tainted the surrounding landscape. The multitude of violent deaths had weakened the boundary between the living world and the Dark Path, allowing Daijen to feel strongly the Devourer’s presence. The trees were gone from the ruined garden, and the remaining plantings were succumbing to a malign influence. Nettles, toadstools, and thorny vines were everywhere, choking generations of careful nurture. The garden was becoming harsh and hurtful. It reminded Daijen of Karvakken Pass, another place where the barrier that restrained his master had been worn thin by slaughter. This site is conducive to sorcery, thought Daijen. Here I can learn what has disturbed my master. Daijen knew he could do nothing without taking the necessary precautions, and he’d need help with that. Contacting the Devourer was always perilous; doing so without a sacrifice was suicidal. A slave will do. I’ll have those at the Black Temple get me one.

 
Since he could do nothing more at present, Daijen headed back. He was walking through the dim interior of the colonnaded building when he heard a tapping sound. Daijen stopped and listened, but the noise ceased. He waited for it to return, and soon his patience was rewarded. When the tapping resumed, Daijen traced the sounds to their source— a ragged old man. He was standing on a rickety ladder to chip tiles from a huge mosaic depicting Karm standing on a mountaintop. Much of the lower portion of the artwork had been marred. Although the tiles that formed the white robe of the goddess were untouched, as were the more drably shaded tiles, most of the other colors had been removed. When Daijen entered the room, the man was at work chipping a blue tile from the sky. His only tools were a battered knife and a rock.

 “You’re a cheeky thief,” Daijen said in a loud voice. Startled, the man nearly lost his balance. He dropped his rock and climbed down the ladder to point his knife at Daijen with trembling hands. “Stay back, or I’ll cut you! These are mine.” 

Daijen flashed an easy smile. “Do you think I care what you do here? I’ve no love for Karm.” 

The man eyed Daijen’s robe. “I guess not,” he said. “Then what brings you?” 

“Curiosity,” replied Daijen. “Why so ner vous? You must have a parade of gawkers.” 

“You’re wrong there. It’s lonely work. Everyone’s afraid of this place.” 

“And you’re not?” 

“It makes me uneasy,” admitted the old man, “and I have dreams, bad ones.” 

“But you still come.” 

“The tiles fetch a few coppers, and there’s not much work for the likes of me.” Daijen’s amiable manner reassured the old man. He picked up his rock and ascended the ladder to resume his pounding. 

Daijen watched awhile before asking in a friendly tone, “Has anyone else come here?” 

“Only a Bearer, and that was many days ago.” 

“What did he say about your enterprise?” 

“She,” corrected the man. “The Bearer was just a girl.” 

“A girl? That’s unusual. I trust her Sarf was a man.” 

“Don’t know. She was alone.” 

“No Sarf? Lucky for you, old man.” 

“I wouldn’t have been scared of her, even if she had one.” Daijen smiled. “I see I’m in the presence of a brave man.” He sauntered over to the ladder and suddenly kicked it. The ladder toppled and the man fell with it, striking the floor with a heavy thud. Daijen leaned over the man, who lay moaning in pain, and grinned. “Still feeling brave?” 

The old man hadn’t lost his knife, and he stabbed at Daijen. When the blade touched the priest’s flesh, a brilliant bluewhite flash illuminated the room. Daijen’s assailant fell back, stunned into unconsciousness by the priest’s spell against iron weapons. His knife, which glowed eerily, fell from his nerveless hand. Daijen’s grin broadened as he hoisted his victim upon his shoulders and carried him to the pyre. He laid the old man on the ashy ground, took a bronze dagger from the folds of his black robe, and slit the man’s throat. Blood flowed, forming a puddle. Daijen tore some fabric from the dead man’s tattered robe, dipped it in the blood, and used it as a crude brush to paint a large circle on the dirt. He took special care to insure that there were no gaps in the design. Only when he was completely satisfied that the circle was unbroken did he step into it. He sat down in a cross- legged position, closed his eyes, and began to trance. 

It was impossible to summon the Devourer without feeling fear. Daijen had no illusions that his master cared for him. The Devourer thrived on slaughter, and the priest knew that his death would satisfy it as well as any other’s. Still, the Devourer needed earthly servants, and he rewarded them with unnatural powers. The knowledge that he was needed and the protection afforded by the bloody circle gave Daijen the nerve to continue. 

Within Daijen’s mind formed a nightmare image of a black sun. It radiated cold instead of warmth and needed life to fuel its frigid fire. The black void was also a conscious being, and when it became aware of Daijen, it turned its thoughts toward him. Malice and insatiable hunger invaded the priest’s consciousness as he asked what disturbed his master. 

The Devourer answered in an inarticulate way with vague dreamlike images that formed in Daijen’s mind. Daijen saw Karm’s temple at night. It was hazy and dim, as if viewed from above through a fog. In its center was the faint form of a lone man. He sat on a rock near the edge of a pool. Daijen couldn’t discern his face or clothing, for the Devourer distinguished individuals in ways it was unable to communicate. 

However, Daijen could perceive the man’s emotions. He was steeling himself to slay a multitude. Daijen felt his master’s eager anticipation of the imminent bloodshed. 

Then a woman entered the temple. Unlike the man, her feelings were hidden from Daijen, but he sensed the enemy guided her. The Devourer sent horrific visions to shatter her sanity. Somehow, she resisted them. She found the man and caused him to abandon his plans. Daijen experienced a surge of frustration and rage as his master communicated the depths of its enmity. It was all directed toward the woman. At any cost, she must be identified, found, and destroyed. The priest emerged from his trance to find the blood around him boiling. His hands trembled and his head throbbed. He slumped down as he tried to collect his thoughts. His vision had presented a disjointed and nebulous puzzle, but one that was urgent to solve. He dared not disappoint his master. 

Daijen began to piece together what he had learned. 

Clearly, the woman was one of Karm’s servants, for she was guided by the enemy.
Knowing this, Daijen regretted that he hadn’t obtained a description of the Bearer from the old man before killing him. Perhaps she’s not the one I seek, but it’s likely. The man could have been her Sarf. Daijen saw logic in this, for Sarfs were lethal and only a Bearer possessed the authority to stop one. It all made sense, and Daijen was encouraged by how far his deductions had taken him. If they were correct, he’d soon find his quarry. As the More Holy One, Daijen commanded all the resources of the Black Temple. A female Bearer would be conspicuous, and Bremven was full of the Devourer’s spies. 

Continues...

Excerpted from Candle in the Storm by Morgan Howell Copyright © 2009 by Morgan Howell. Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 22 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(14)

4 Star

(6)

3 Star

(2)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 22 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 26, 2012

    Better then the first

    Very slow moving. Better story line. The sad part is the bad guys are more interesting then most of the regular characters

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 17, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    On a world level and on a personal level, Candle in the Storm is a powerful quest thriller

    Those remaining loyal to the Goddess Karm have little hope to defeat the dark forces of the Devourer. His horde led by his incantation Lord Bahl has devastated anything in their path. Despair from Averen to Vinden to Luvein and elsewhere is the norm as the Devourer's bewitched army massacres those foolish to remain loyal to Karm.

    Two Karm loyalists may be the last prayer of a world facing the abyss of the apocalypse. Honus the warrior and Yim the former slave with the power to potentially defeat Bahl remain united in love for each other and for the Goddess. However, their love is shaken to the core as Yim must perform a task that she loathes doing; she questions the worthiness of their side of the deadly dispute as she loses faith in the Goddess and perhaps in Honus too.

    The second Shadowed Path fantasy is a terrific middle book that builds directly from the previous tale so newcomers should first read A Woman Worth Ten Coppers. The story line is even grimmer than its predecessor as the world is on the verge of an extreme Dark Age while the lead couple is trying to prevent the sinister encroachment from occurring as they struggle internally; with their relationship being a microcosm of what is engulfing the heart and soul of humanity. On a world level and on a personal level, Candle in the Storm is a powerful quest thriller.

    Harriet Klausner

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 26, 2012

    Vision-elite's den

    This is where the elite's rest. Elites are pups who are over twelve moons and in training. The den has a cool, sandy floor like all the others.~Vision

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 11, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted November 23, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted February 21, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted September 10, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted January 27, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted November 26, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted August 6, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted February 26, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted December 29, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted December 14, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted April 28, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted August 24, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted December 5, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted January 27, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted May 9, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted January 24, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted August 6, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 22 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)