I’m often loathe to try new fantasy authors. I tend to stick to books that are highly recommended or suggested by friends. I don’t often have the time to browse for new books, whether it’s in a store or from my tablet. And I don’t have the resources like I used to to just purchase a book in hopes that it might be a keeper. Considering The Warded Man (Demon Cycle #1) or as I like to call it “Arlen’s Book”, was Peter V. Brett’s debut novel, it was surprisingly decent for a first attempt. I also admit that while I wasn’t too taken by the plot line in The Warded Man at first, the characters ended up making the story.
As far as this second book goes I like it much better than the first. The Desert Spear is “Jardir’s Book” mainly. I think Peter’s writing “grew-up” a bit more and the editing feels more complete. The characters are fleshed out better and their paths are starting to show a firm direction. In the first book you’re really not sure where anyone is heading and what the overall arc is going to be. You just know you’ve stumbled across a series that you know has the potential to be pretty darn good. I can’t even say for sure how long this series is going to stretch out (I’ve seen that it might be 5 books total), but The Desert Spear is definitely moving things right along and I appreciate the backstory on how Jardir came to be the man he is. I don’t mind re-reading previous plots from a different point of view as it seems to show how each character was “justified” in his/her own actions. It can make the bad guy turn into a good guy. I like it. It’s a different writing style.
The demons are still just as creepy and the battles with them just as bloody and intense. Though I’ve read much better fight scenes these are just enough to further the plot without being frilly and dragging on for pages. I’m barely half way thru The Desert Spear, but I know I’ll be staying with this series till the end and that’s a good indication of how great this is turning out to be.
If you’re willing to try new things and just “go for it” you might just surprise yourself with a new favorite author.