My own unapologetic opinions on books and writing.
by Michael J. Sullivan
This has the feel of a good old fashioned Medieval Fantasy. A man and his son, Raithe, cross a forbidden river and find themselves in an altercation with one of the gods over the family sword because weapons are forbidden to mortals in the land of the gods. They soon learn that the nature of the gods is not as they thought it was and Raithe finds himself on the run with a liberated slave.
The story has a lot of the earmarks of a typical Fantasy. A race of people who live in the woods, a mock-Medieval society, different factions and clans, fighting and superstitions. It also brings in some elements of mythology with the belief that if you eat anything in the land of Nog, where the forest people live, you can never leave. Given the choice of starving in a forest and being hunted down by a strong and nearly immortal people for revenge or living in a well fed, comfortable situation in an alternate world you can't leave, Raithe and his companion consider their options.
We get to know other factions of characters, sometimes digressing into their individual stories. My one complaint about this book is that it dragged. I got the feeling that the Fantasy world was being created for future sequels where perhaps more would happen. The different peoples were well explained, but that seemed to be the main purpose of the story, to explain all the odd names of factions and how they related to each other.
There are some good basic Sword & Sorcery elements to this one, but it was just a little too slow for me.