The Warded Man

For my first book review, here’s The Warded Man by Peter V. Brett

Book Stats

Fantasy

453 pages (paperback)

1st book in its series

Characters

This book focuses on three main characters, Arlen, Leesha, and Rojer.  The book takes place over about 10-12 years and follows these characters over that time.  By following them all and showing different experiences that they have over a course of years, you get a good sense of why the characters change as they do throughout the book.  The book focuses primarily on Arlen for the first two-thirds of the book and as a result he is probably the most well developed character of the three.  All three of the characters were interesting and while at times I wondered exactly how all three of the characters would relate to the overall plot, I still enjoyed reading all of their viewpoints throughout the book.

Setting

The story is set on a world where every night demons arise from the core for seemingly no purpose other than to terrorize the few humans still left in the world.  The only defense that humans have against the demons are wards that can be used to prevent the demons from entering their homes at night.  The wards that people have are remnants from society hundreds of years in the past when humans knew how to fight the demons as opposed to simply hiding from them.  Many of the cities in the world are small and separated so that only a few people are willing to travel between them.  These few people are known as messengers and are trained in creating wards, this allows them to travel and even occasionally stay out at night.

Plot

The plot follows the three main characters who start in separate parts of the world and we watch them as they grow up from somewhat naive children to much more competent adults in different areas of their life.  Arlen and Rojer are forced to grow in their life when their villages are attacked by demons, while Leesha has obstacles relating to her life being promised to a brutal young man who threatens her dignity.  Arlen is ultimately led upon a journey to become a messenger after being trained in the making of wards.  While journeying through the world he ultimately discovers some wards that have not been known to humans in the world.  Leesha becomes apprenticed to an Herb-Gatherer and is trained in healing.  She learns to deal with her own problems as opposed to relying on others to solve them for her and becomes a well respected healer in the town where she works.  Rojer is the youngest of the three characters at the beginning of the book, where he is just 3 years old.  After having his village attacked early in the story he is apprenticed to a Jongleur, learning different performing arts including singing, juggling, tumbling, and playing the fiddle.

The plot causes all three characters to learn their respective skills and how these skills can be used to help deal with the ongoing problem of the demons who corrupt the world.  Ultimately the three are united where they learn how they can all help one another to survive out in the wild which most humans avoid while cowering behind their wards in their cities.

Enjoyment

I loved this book and read the first 350 pages in one day, I would have finished the book that day but it was getting late and I had to get some sleep since I had class the next morning.

Overall Grade

While the books does slow down slightly about two-thirds of the way through, the end is still satisfying and gives promise towards the next book in the series.

9/10

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