Merchant of Alyss (Legends of the Realm Book #2)

Merchant of Alyss (Legends of the Realm Book #2)

by Thomas Locke

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Life for Hyam is bittersweet. Admired by the citizens of Falmouth for his heroic rescue mission, he cherishes these peaceful days with Joelle by his side. Yet grief over the loss of his magical skills during the great Battle of Emporis threatens to engulf him. Sometimes he even wishes he had never known magic at all.

When Hyam comes into possession of an ancient Milantian scroll, he is thrilled to feel the surge of power that courses through him whenever he touches it. But what he discerns in the text could mean war. He embarks upon another journey to determine its true meaning and forestall any attack. But as Hyam is seeking answers, he is unaware that the merchant of Alyss is seeking him . . .

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781493401710
Publisher: Baker Publishing Group
Publication date: 12/29/2015
Series: Legends of the Realm , #2
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 368
Sales rank: 75,563
File size: 5 MB

About the Author

Thomas Locke is a pseudonym for Davis Bunn, the award-winning novelist with total worldwide sales of seven million copies. With a lifelong passion for speculative stories, he is also the author of Emissary and Trial Run. His work has been published in twenty languages, and critical acclaim includes four Christy Awards for excellence in fiction. He divides his time between Oxford and Florida. A screenplay adaptation of Emissary is currently under development as a feature film with a British production company. Learn more at
Thomas Locke is a pseudonym for Davis Bunn, an award-winning novelist with worldwide sales of seven million copies in twenty languages. Davis divides his time between Oxford and Florida and holds a lifelong passion for speculative stories. He is the author of Emissary and Merchant of Alyss in the Legends of the Realm series, as well as Trial Run and Flash Point in the Fault Lines series. Learn more at

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Merchant of Alyss (Legends of the Realm Book #2) 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 24 reviews.
Maryar39 More than 1 year ago
“Merchant of Alyss,” written by Thomas Locke, is book two in the “Legends of the Realm series.” You will be able to follow this book even if you haven’t read the first book, “Emissary.” In his series, Locke has created a fantasy world filled with mystery, magical powers, challenges, travel and a talking dragon. Main character, Hyam, has lost his power of magic. Upon the discovery of an ancient Milantian scroll, he feels that he might be able to regain the magic. He has to decide if he should pursue the possibility or walk away from it. And thus begins the journey across the desert in a desperate attempt to reach the city of Alyss before time runs out! “Merchant of Alyss is a pretty clean story filled with good and evil. It takes the reader on a journey through magical lands, keeping one fully focused on the story. Just when I thought I knew what was going to happen another mysterious character or beast was introduced to the story. I was impressed with the theme of temptation, and how it played out in this book. I felt it was so true to real struggles we have today. I received a complimentary copy of this book from Revell in exchange for my honest review.
Fitzysmom More than 1 year ago
I've said before that fantasy just isn't my genre of choice. But after reading Merchant of Alyss, I may be changing my mind on that. Thomas Locke has such an engaging writing style that I can't help but be drawn into the story. This book (and series) has a little bit of everything so you don't have to be a fantasy lover to enjoy it. There is adventure and intrigue for the suspense lovers. There is a beautiful love story between Hyam and his wife Joelle for all the romantics. And there is also an underlying spiritual element for inspirational fiction lovers. Merchant of Alyss is the second book in the Legends of the Realm series. I am supposing that you could read it as a stand-alone novel because things are explained very well without being redundant. But . . . truthfully I have to say that I think I would have been a little bit lost if I hadn't first read Emissary. I look forward to reading the next book to see where the story will take these compelling characters next. If you enjoy a great read that will take you to a world yet unknown you should give this series a try. I received a copy of this book to facilitate my review.
Sparrowhawk24 More than 1 year ago
Merchant of Alyss had flair but no real substance beyond a decent concept and setting. Simply put, this was not an easy read to sit through. The plot was almost non-existent and the writing style rendered the book nearly unreadable! It just didn't work for me and I don't think I will continue with the series. ___________________________________ WHAT I LIKED . . . . . . . . . . THINGS THAT MADE GO HMMM. . . - My main gripe with Merchant of Alyss was the writing style that just presumed too much of the reader. It’s the sort of writing style that demands a strenuous amount of effort and attention in view of the authors semantic choice of words. Not only that, but with the brief descriptions, stunted sentences, and disruptive charge the words simply disappeared making it difficult to grasp any of the characters, their plights, and the plot. In response, the sentinel rose from the earth. He hovered above Hyam’s head, up where his wraithlike form become silhouetted by the sun. Gone was the warrior of old. In its place appeared a great conjured beast, whose outstretched wings bore diamond patters along their leading edges. Talons raked the space between it and Hyam, and a sweeping tail lashed out, mist-like against the stones. Then the sentinel returned to the earth and resumed his warrior guise. He motioned once more. Come. - The fantastical elements were great to be sure, but most of the book was a massive info dump. The only thing this book has going for itself, truly, is its appealing cover art and a dragon that peppers the plot line; poor dragon, it didn’t even get the limelight it deserved. Other than that, there’s no real point to the magical elements mentioned in this book and most of the tropes will fly completely over your head because some of the referenced details go without any real explanation. - In retrospect, Merchant of Alyss made no real sense to me and I didn’t see how it connected with the first book at all ― a dragon haunts Hyam’s dreams all while trying to convey a subliminal message that was dry and uneventful. There are enchanted scrolls, one in particular, that holds immeasurable power, but I didn’t really see this said power evolve as I would have liked. There’s a coming of age side story that didn’t really hold my interest and a sappy love story that just was not my cup of tea. This pretty much sums up the plot and as interesting as this may sound, the truth is I simply could not connect with the narrative nor the characters enough to keep me even vaguely amused. AFTERTHOUGHTS Merchant of Alyss fell short in comparison to other fantasy novels I have read and to say that I was underwhelmed is an understatement, I want the eight hours I spent reading this book back! But that’s only wishful thinking. Having said all this, I can’t recommend this book or series at all, and I realize that I may just have lost rapport with Revell Publishing in light of this review. C’est la vie.
RussHanley More than 1 year ago
Locke’s Legends of the Realm now continues with Merchant of Alyss, and, I hope, many more adventures to come. After reading Emissary, I was one of those eagerly anticipating Locke’s latest installment and I was not disappointed. For anyone familiar with his writing, it goes without saying that Locke’s characters are always well developed and engaging and that the pacing of his stories takes his readers along on the adventure. You could read this second book as a stand-alone but you would miss a great deal of the richness of Locke’s main characters and most of the background of the world he has created. I strongly recommend that you read “Emissary” before reading this book. To do otherwise would be like starting Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings trilogy with the “Two Towers”. You would enjoy the book but might feel like you were missing some background. The story is much richer if you’ve read the books in order. I love a good fantasy story that transports me to a different, but somehow familiar world with likeable characters. What could be better than a series of stories that take the reader even deeper into this new world? Thomas Locke has a rare talent; he creates vivid characters that are real and weaves them into action packed stories that capture the imagination of his readers. Emissary proved Locke to be a skillful crafter of new worlds and new and interesting characters that I immediately liked and that soon felt like comfortable friends. In Merchant of Alyss we get to know more about Hyam, who lost his magical abilities in the final battle to defeat the Crimson Mage. Joelle, the half human, half Ashanta whom Hyam rescues and who becomes his wife; and Captain Meda, who fought beside Hyam and was knighted by the Earl of Oberon, also feature in this book. . I loved the Merchant of Alyss and would definitely recommend it to anyone who loves a well written and totally captivating story. The only caveat would be to make sure you read Emissary first to get the full experience. I hope Locke decides to make the Legends of the Realm into an ongoing series of many books. The Publisher provided me with a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.
J_Augustine More than 1 year ago
Good must triumph or all is lost... Once again Thomas Locke drew me in and held me hostage with the pages of a book. And just like last time with Emissary I finished Merchant Of Alyss in fairly short order. I just couldn't seem to put it down. The story was enthralling and the writing is top-notch in quality. Reminiscent of Tolkein, in that, the story gets darker and more desperate as the quest goes on, but still told in Locke's own distinctive voice. Merchant Of Alyss is definitely what I would call epic fantasy. It isn't one of those dauntingly thick paperbacks of years gone by, but it is an all encompassing, all engrossing tale. Complete in 350+ pages and yet with the perfect, almost cliffhanger, ending to draw you onward in anxious anticipation for the next book. If you like fantasy Merchant Of Alyss has it all. A desperate quest, dragons, magic, mysterious forces of both good and evil, and a small band of companions trying to conquer the darkness before it's too late. For years I kept my fantasy reading to pretty much J.R.R. Tolkein and C.S. Lewis but in recent years I have discovered some pretty talented current fantasy authors. Thomas Locke is one of those I consider a must-read, if I see his name on the cover I'll definitely pick it up. A great book that will appeal to teens and adults alike, Merchant Of Alyss, Thomas Locke's latest installment in the Legends Of The Realm series, is a MUST read for fans of fantasy and quality, well-written fiction. (I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for my review. All opinions are entirely my own.)
DLWatson More than 1 year ago
Merchant of Alyss is a good, solid sword and sorcery fantasy with inventive monsters and a developed magic system. The storyline continues from book 1, as also does the development of characters introduced there so if you want to dive into the Legends of the Realm series, I highly recommend you start with book 1. My favorite type of fantasy fiction shows a struggle of good vs. evil with a ray of hope in the mix. As such, I was happy to see Merchant of Alyss fit that bill. In terms of suspense, there were a few twists throughout the story, but I would have liked a bit more to keep me guessing. I also would like to see a bit more spark in the protagonist, who frequently seemed weary, and which in turn seemed to make the story drag in a couple of brief places. Overall, however, I enjoyed the read. If you are a lover of epic-style fantasy, I recommend you give Merchant of Alyss a try.
StudentofParables More than 1 year ago
Merchant of Alyss is book two of the series Legends of the Realm, and I highly recommend you pick up the first book, Emissary, as well! This series is amazing, and the author, who writes under a pseudonym for his fantasy series, is a fantastic storyteller. The books in this series have included a lot of travelling back and forth across the Realm. There are very few stories I have found that can do this type of narrative well, and keep the reader engaged. Merchant of Alyss most definitely delivers! Each new area was described in rich detail, and the interactions among the travelers unwrapped new depths to their characters that pulled you in more and more. This book is set a year and a half after the first, and there are many new characters to meet. The reveal and descriptions of each individual are great! They are vivid, and stick with you long after you close the cover. I also loved the redemption side of the story, how the main characters bind back together all races and heritages in one accord. Skillfully revealed and layered together, this aspect of the story was the high note for me. I didn’t want the tale to end, and then it had to end on a massive cliffhanger! I’m sitting at the edge of my seat, waiting for the next one to be released! I plan to recommend this work a lot, and it’s on my list to give out for gifts! I received a review copy of this work from the publisher through NetGalley.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Couldn't ask for more.
Toria94 More than 1 year ago
Merchant of Alyss, the sequel to Emissary, by Thomas Locke was well worth the wait. Right from the beginning those who are familiar with fantasy lit can sense that something out of the ordinary is about to happen. And boy does it! At the end of Emissary the main character, Hyam, has been stripped of his power. Because of that one would think that the storyline would come to an end, but Locke manages a fix to the problem and Hyam once again is able to be a useful character and fight the evil that is trying to overtake the land. His is not an immediate cure. This is managed through ancient scrolls written in such a manner as only Hyam can read. The writing on the scroll allows Hyam to use magic in a different manner than before. Once he and his friends are made aware that there are many more such scrolls they set off in search of them. So begins their new adventure. Some of those who accompany Hyam are the same as in Emissary. Some are new to the group. All have their role to play and are vital to the success of their mission. As with all good storytelling there must be a conflict of some sort. In this case, Shona, new to the group and with powers of her own, reveals to Joelle, Hyam’s wife, that she too loves Hyam. Joelle has already warned Hyam of this. Rather than act in jealousy, Joelle talks lovingly to the young girl and tries to make her understand that Hyam cares for her as well but not in the same way. Unfortunately, rather than Shona accepting her words and trying to move on, she tells Joelle that he could care for her one day. That statement alone clues the reader that trouble may be brewing for the future happiness of Hyam, Joelle, and Shona. It should be interesting to see how the author handles this dilemma in future offerings. Obstacles are overcome, battles fought, allies made, and enemies defeated but not annihilated as they need to be in order for peace to return to the land. Groups of people who were once enemies and even non-humans come together for a show of solidarity in the quest to rid their land of evil. It was during the ceremony where Shona was made Queen of the realm that Bayard, Earl of Falmouth, made what I thought to be a most interesting speech. It struck me as ironic that it should bring to mind current affairs in our own country as well as abroad. I’d be surprised if bringing me to this thought process is what the author intended. This is when the written word can take on various and possibly hidden meanings for those who read it completely and are able to see beyond what is said to what may be implied and what may be meant to jettison us out of our complacency. Overall, the happenings throughout the book are told well and completely, giving the reader freedom to interpret and fashion their own visuals. The quest is not finished and another sequel will be written—sooner rather than later, I hope, as waiting to see what happens next will be like trying not to eat your favorite dessert sitting right under your nose. I received an advance reader’s copy of this book from Revell in exchange for my honest review.
benhli38 More than 1 year ago
Thomas Locke has done it again with his new book, Merchant of Alyss. Hyam is thrust into a situation, even though he's still recovering from battle wounds in Emissary. Milantian scrolls appear in Falmouth Port where his help is needed to understanding what they are and why it appears there's no text on the scrolls. Now, he's on a new quest. This force quickly surrounds him, his wife Joelle, and a small band of friends into both unknown territory and onward to the furthest reaches for an unknown enemy. Why did I love a book where I know nothing of the primary character from the previous book? Simply because I see and feel exactly what Hyam does in this fantastic book. Here's a small taste of Merchant of Alyss on page 22 onto page 23: "Hyam turned away. He waited until a turning hid him from view, and then he scratched the scars that ran from his right wrist to his breastbone. The physical wounds had healed well enough, but defeating the crimson mage had seared away Hyam's arcane talents and shattered his orb of power. The losses left him bereft in a manner that none could see and only a handful even comprehend." I rate the book at five out five the way I do not just because I enjoy the way Thomas Locke writes. This is my third read of his work. Thomas Locke has also written Trial Run and Double Edge. Thomas Locke is the pseudonym for Davis Bunn. Davis has received multiple awards for his books. He has also has sales of over seven million worldwide. You can read more of his books at Disclaimer - I received this book from Revell for my honest review.
VicG More than 1 year ago
Thomas Locke in his new book, “Merchant of Alyss” Book Two in the Legends of the Realm series published by Revell gives us another adventure with Hyam. From the Back Cover: Beneath the hills of a primeval city, a vanquished enemy is gathering power. As this new threat arises, can Hyam summon his true heritage and overcome the forces of evil? When Hyam reluctantly returned to the Long Hall, he never imagined how his life would change. Latent powers were honed, chance encounters brought new wisdom, and even love found a way into his heart. With his wife, Joelle, he now makes a home in Falmouth Port. Hyam is slowly recovering from his battles when a mysterious shipment of Milantian scrolls arrives. Soon he is haunted by dreams of mythic beasts and coming conflicts. When Joelle falls under a sorcerer’s spell, he must venture through the desolate lands to save her–and his community. One particular scroll seems to hold the promise of new powers, but it also carries a hidden warning about an unfathomable threat. As Hyam sets out on another journey, he is keenly aware that he must rely on all his abilities–and his forbidden past–to succeed. His quest could bring deliverance . . . or devastation. At the conclusion of “The Emissary”, Book One in this series, Hyam had lost his powers and the enemy was destroyed. Hyam has a new enemy, one that has put Hyam’s wife under a spell. To defeat him Hyman must go on a new journey, a journey that will tax him to the limit. This is an extremely exciting book with complex twists and turns that you probably will not see coming. This book will keep you turning pages while leaving chores unattended and it is so worth it. Mr. Locke is an excellent writer and makes all his characters believable and you care deeply for them as he deftly unfolds the plot before us. It is clear that the final battle still has to be fought and I am so looking forward to the next book in this series. Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Revell Publishers. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
Bookworm_Debbie More than 1 year ago
Another fantastic good versus evil fantasy novel! This is part of a “true” series. You have to read book one before you start this novel or major parts of the story won’t make sense to you. Hyam and Joelle are back along with a number of their friends from the first book. There have been some changes in each of these characters and I enjoyed seeing how they have moved on. They again band together for this new quest. They also have new friends and allies join them as a new evil makes its presence felt. The story telling is wonderful and the fantasy land is described in great detail. I thoroughly enjoy the development of the different races and their histories as they are gradually revealed. I certainly hope that this is not the last book about this incredible realm from the author’s imagination. I received a free eBook copy of this novel from the publisher in exchange for my honest opinion.
ARS8 More than 1 year ago
Merchant of Alyss is the second book in Thomas Locke’s Legends of the Realm series and I remember reading the first rather quickly and enjoying it. This one carries on the story nicely but it did take me a little while to get reacquainted with the characters again. I think that is just due to the book being a fantasy, though. However, that being said as I delved deeper into the story I had a hard time putting it down. Our hero Hyam with his bride Joelle is recovering from his battles where he had lost his magical abilities when a shipment of scrolls that only he has the ability to read is sent to his allies. He also begins to have strange dreams with a dragon involved. All of this sets our hero, his wife, and their comrades on a very dangerous journey into the unknown to find the answers needed for these new mysteries. Along the way they meet many dangers and please do be prepared at what happens. So if you like fantasy with elves, humans, dragons, monsters and more, I highly recommend this series. It was a riveting read for me even though I did not like some of the plot choices and one particular character was getting under my skin. I am anxious for the next in this series to see how things can be made right. I received a copy for an honest review from Revell Publishing and the opinions are my own.
GrandaddyA More than 1 year ago
I suppose I have not spent time reading fantasy in the past because it isn’t real. I tend to be logical and literal. Fantasy does not fit that mold. However, when I learned last year that Davis Bunn was writing a new fantasy series using the pseudonym of Thomas Locke, I knew I wanted to read the series. Am I ever glad that I made that choice! His fantasy is fantastic! Is that being redundant? I don’t think so. I have read other novels in the contemporary and historical genre that were more fantasy than real but they were not fantastic. Maybe I should say Thomas Locke’s fantasy is superb. This story is captivating and engaging. I enjoyed trying to picture the creatures, characters, and settings that he described. After all, who has ever seen Elves, Ashantas, Milantians, golems, mages, and all those interesting vales, mountains, deserts, seas, etc. that he describes? Reading Locke’s stories makes me feel as if a spell has been cast on me and I have to finish reading to be released from the spell. His imagination and ability to communicate in a way that brings it to life astounds me. I recommend this book to anyone who loves a good story, even if fantasy isn’t what you normally read. This is a good clean book written for the general public. I received a complimentary copy of this book from Revell in exchange for my honest review.
EA_Hendryx More than 1 year ago
A fantasy world vibrant with imagination, deep magic, and characters you will cheer for. I really enjoyed Merchant of Alyss! As Thomas Locke's second novel in the Legends of the Realm series, he follows the solid foundation laid in Emissary (book one) and thrills his readers with yet another fantastical tale of magic, quests, and danger. We see Hyam, the main character, moving on in the aftermath of his heroic sacrifice from the end book one. He's touted as a hero everywhere he goes in Falmouth, yet he's still the burdened, slightly enigmatic character from Emissary. As I noticed in the first book, Hyam isn't (to me at least) an overtly emotional character. Through events I won't mention here (no spoilers my friends) I expect that he should be more emotional than he is, and yet his stoic, burdened nature doesn't bother me. It allows for the plot and supporting characters to take precedence which suits the genre well. I love the elements of magic and lore that Locke incorporates in this second book and felt that Hyam's quests unfolded just as I would expect from a fantasy, yet not in an "expected" way. The pull toward the end of the story was strong, the battles just as epic (if not more so) as book one, and the many moving parts and colorful character groups created a seamless story world worthy of Tolkien. I also enjoyed Locke's descriptive writing which allowed me to truly visualize everything that was happening. There is one portion (a character really) of the story I'm not quite convinced on (again, no spoilers) but I have faith that Locke will bring it around in book three. If you enjoy fantasy of any kind you will love this book. I would recommend reading Emissary first, only for the fact that the story will likely make a lot more sense to you and will, in turn, be more satisfying. I'm already looking forward to book three and what Hyam will accompolish there. ...Oh, and of course, the cover is spectacular. Almost as good as the cover for Emissary (in my opinion). My rating: 4.5* Originally posted on my blog: _______________________ I received a free copy of this book for review purposes, but was under no obligation to read the book or post a review. I do so under my own motivation and the opinions I have expressed in this review are honest and entirely my own.
Kathae More than 1 year ago
When I read Emissary, Book One of the Legends of the Realm series, I was happily surprised at how much I enjoyed that book, since fantasy is a genre I rarely read. I wish that I had re-read Emissary before picking up Merchant of Alyss, because it took a little while for me to remember the characters and the history. But Thomas Locke is a master storyteller and wordsmith, and I was caught up in this fantasy world. It felt like I was there. Locke’s descriptions are so vivid you can feel the heat of the fire and the thirst of the desert. Locke also really put several characters through some intense situations, in which they deal with the deep longings of their hearts. This made it easy to feel like I really knew the characters. Lovers of fantasy will love this book, because it has it all: Dragons, magic, wizards, and so many surprises! Read Emissary first, then enjoy the continuation of Hyam’s story in Merchant of Alyss.
RachelHreader More than 1 year ago
A vast world of fantasy characters and towns pulls you in immediately. The author paints out a narrow canyon of a story, sometimes turning, other times rising and falling, with the mystery slowly pulling you along. I love how several genres of mystery, fiction, fantasy, and sci-fi are blended together to create this river of characters and settings. It was well paced, with just enough new information given out each page to keep you guessing. The action was fast paced, the variety of characters increased from the first book in the series, and I loved the addition of another strong female lead. I felt that this character grew naturally, both in description and development. The emotions and experiences resonate as if you were there, amongst the caravan of travelers. The battle between good vs. evil was well worth the read. I could tell you details of new characters, of an unfolding world, of old world technology and fantasy characters and races. But I don’t want to ruin any surprise of the story. I must say, the book is worth every minute spent gripping the pages, and every penny spent acquiring it. Five stars. I received a complimentary copy of this book from Revell in exchange for my honest review. Set aside a couple of hours, you won’t be able to put this down!
NatalieRae More than 1 year ago
If you're a fan of Tolkien and LOTR: The Legends of the Realm will be YOUR next epic fantasy obsession! Merchant of Alyss is book #2 in the Legends series and continues Hyam's journey in The Realm. The dicovery of ancient scrolls reveals Hyam's ability to read what isn't there and a series of dreams about dragons sends Hyam and his caravan on a journey to save their land...until the life breath of Hyam's beloved wife, Joelle, is stolen. First, I'll admit that my genre of choice is not fantasy but as of late I've found myself drawn into the world created by authors who captivate my imagination like no other. Thomas Locke is one of those authors. I was pulled in by Hyam's struggle to overcome his new handicap (no spoilers here!) and the challenge to save not only his wife but his home from the threat of potential war. Mr. Locke pours enough detail into Hyam's companions that they are no mere secondary sidekicks but rather characters who leap from the page begging me to ask, "What's their story?" Thankfully, Mr. Locke provides. In every way, Thomas Locke offers a story rich in incredible detail and delivers mythical mages, ghost armies, dragons, and luring witches to appease readers who seek the fantasy stories with substance beyond the realms. *I received this book in exchange for my honest review.
theskett More than 1 year ago
Merchant of Alyss is Thomas Locke’s second book in the Legends of the Realm series. This is not a book to rush through, and in our society, that’s a good thing. Locke sets the reader’s pace – you don’t get to set your own. The writing creates a strong mood and tone that draws readers into the story. That said, it had been awhile since I had read Emmissary so to start I had trouble picking up the story. New readers will definitely want to read Emmissary first. Within the first 50 pages, though, I started to care about the characters, although their purposes and goals were not quite clear. And I’m still a little fuzzy on whether Hyam fully uncovered the meaning of the scrolls. Once I got into the story, I enjoyed traveling along with Hyam on his quest and adventures, and getting to know his fine character better. Hyam is the kind of character we’d like to know personally. And I look forward to reading more about the dragon, Tragan. I did wonder (and still do) how the author will solve the dilemma Hyam may face at some point. Although some of the story threads were completed, a couple of major ones were not – it felt as if the book didn’t end, and now we are waiting for the next book in the series. Fantasy readers will enjoy this second book in what looks to be a strong series. I can envision myself going back and rereading the series again once it is complete. I received an Advance Readers Copy in exchange for my honest review.
Steve_Doc_Hilton More than 1 year ago
The epic adventure, begun by author Thomas Locke with The Emissary, continues. But for Hyam . . . this time, it’s personal. He’s been having trouble sleeping, his dreams troubled by a great dragon who is desperate to communicate with him. Or is it a dream? Before he can discover the meaning, he and his companions are forced once again into daring and doing the impossible. Along the way, they will each face their personal demons as they grow together from a group of individuals to a mighty army. The Merchant Of Alyss follows the same formula that garnered praise for Thomas Locke in the first installment of The Legends Of The Realm. The reader will be swept away on a literary journey fraught with peril, filled with challenges, and tinged by sorrow. New friends will be made, new enemies will be met, and new obstacles will be overcome. And yet through it all, there are the never-ending, ever-enduring themes of loyalty, courage, honor . . . and love. To reveal more in this review would be to spoil the adventure. If you’ve never read The Emissary, that might be a good place to start. While The Merchant Of Alyss can be read as a stand-alone book, there are enough allusions to the first book to make this somewhat tedious. Five Stars for author Thomas Locke and The Legends Of The Realm epic adventure!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
What fun to share in an honorable quest with characters I’d like to know; as real and vibrant as friends. Dragons, witches, elves, ancient spells and lore entwine in an adventure that spun me into their space and time. A test of endurance, the purity of love and loyalty meshed in an Ursula LeGuin type adventure. A sorcerer, who lost his power, is summoned by a dragon to save their world. A troupe of magicians, apprentices and guards are assembled for the journey through devastated lands in search of answers on their quest. Allies are build, a girl forges her path to queen and ancient rules are shattered to fight evil.
annelr More than 1 year ago
Merchant of Alyss, second in the Legends of the Realm series does not disappoint. We meet Hyam, the Emissary and his wife, Joelle, again and readers will love them anew. Hero and heroine, lovers, warriors, trustworthy and honored. Hyam once again is on a quest, one that may end in war and death. A merchant from Alyss has presented scrolls that only Hyam can read and off he must go to face his heritage. Witches weaving spells, sheep-eating golems, ghostly soldiers, loyal but wary Elves and dying dragons...all play their part in this mystical, magical-filled journey to rid the realm of the evil that threatens. Change is in the air, primeval ways are being broken, but Hyman and his faithful friends persevere. New characters bring added dimension and tension to the story. Great descriptive writing enables readers to feel they are front and center for the adventure. From the first pages with a cloaked figure being seen as a sign to sound the alarm to the last pages where we realize there is even more to the story, the action, mystery and suspense of this trek across the desert keep the pages turning. Very much looking forward to the next in the series. I received a complimentary copy of this book from Revell in exchange for my honest review.
RabidReader1 More than 1 year ago
An enthralling, exciting adventure of good vs evil. It well written and has everything; wizards, dragons, love, drama, demons and intrigue. Locke draws you into Harm and Joelle's world, generating empathy with the characters and clearly creates pictures and emotions with his written word. The many twists and turns in the plot keeps you turning the pages, desperate for the next sentence and, in the end, the next book. Even though this is the second book in the series it can still be read as a stand-a-lone story as the author does a good job of filling you in on what happened in the previous book while still moving the current story forward. I am looking forward to reading the next book in the series. I received a complimentary copy of this book from Revell in exchange for my honest review.
bsnksmom More than 1 year ago
Thomas Locke has done it again! Merchant of Alyss continues Hyam’s adventures and what fantastic adventures they are! The first book in the series, Emissary, ended with Hyam’s epic battle with the crimson mage. In defeating the crimson enemy, Hyam destroys his orb of power and virtually burns his own magic away. As Merchant of Alyss begins, Hyam is still recovering – leading a life of peace and rest with his wife, Joelle. One afternoon, while Hyam naps, a magical visitor arrives at his home intent on doing him harm. As the grove of trees surrounding his home moves to become an impenetrable fence, the visitor attempts to blast his/her way through. While the blast is heard by everyone in the nearby town, Hyam sleeps through the whole thing. His dreams are undisturbed – until the dragon arrives asking for his help. Hyam drags his feet. What can he really do without magic anyway? The discovery of a trove of Milantian scrolls which detail various spells of war sparks his interest. It is the witch’s attack on his wife, Joelle, that finally sends him on the quest to help the dragon. In so doing, he hopes to find the means to heal Joelle. I’ve hesitated to compare these books to C.S. Lewis’ Narnia books but the similarities are there. Hyam is led by a talking eagle and directed by a talking dragon who befriends him. He travels through fantastical worlds with perils never seen by human eyes. He brings together people of many races – Milantian, Ashanta, Elven, dragon and human – and leads them as a general might lead an army. He is able to discern those who would use magic for evil from those who use it for good. And he always uses it for good. In spite of his humble beginnings, Hyam shows greatness in humility and love through sacrifice. If you haven’t already read Emissary I would encourage you to start there before tackling Merchant of Alyss. While I think Merchant can stand on its own it is much easier to understand Hyam’s thinking when you know where he’s been. I have LOVED this series and I don’t generally read fantasy. Thomas Locke captures the imagination and paints word pictures with the best. I look forward to the third installment in the Legends of the Realm series! I received this book from the author as part of his launch team!