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Posted October 7, 2009
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The nights of the long shadows are the three nights of the year when the dark powers of the world gain strength and rise to prey upon the unwary.* So, what does that have to do with a viciously murdered professor, his courtesan and her boyfriend? Enter Abraxis Wren, inquisitive of House Medani, and Torin, his dwarf partner. You will follow them as they stumble, sleuth and bicker their way through the nights (and days) of the long shadows, meeting crooked politicians, dark clerics and a rampaging warforged - even teaming up with a couple of unlikely people. The mystery is very engaging and inventive, encompassing more than just one simple murder. However, it is the characters that steal the show. Each one is unique and well thought out - from the halfling mafia enforcer to the owner of an upscale brothel to a brilliant (if mad) artificer. Not to mention the dwarven female that is never seen, but that I hold quite a clear image of in my head. Wren makes a perfect main character; his intelligence (and just a drop of flightiness) provides in him the perfect foil for Torin's more grounded manner. The characters are very vibrant and fit in the story well; Sharn was shown in all its grime and glory. This novel has a bit more of a gritty feel to it than most other Eberron novels that I have read, which works for it very well. Though it is the second in the inquisitives series, it can be read as a standalone novel - first you might want to read a short story by the author in Tales of the Last War titled Death before Dawn as it's a bit of a prequel to at least one of the characters. Mr. Crilley's second Abraxis Wren novel (titled Taint of the Black Brigade) is slated for release in August of 2010. I honestly don't know how I'm going to wait until then to find out what our favorite (only?) half-elf inquisitive does next.
4 stars: slight room for improvement, though very addictive.
*From back cover.
Posted August 31, 2013
No text was provided for this review.