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The people of Getty's town remember the death of their cemetery soldier vividly. They remember believing him guilty of unspeakable crimes, condemning him, and then watching as other men of his unit beat him until he no longer drew breath. But Nevare Burvelle didn't die that day, though everyone believes they saw it happen. He was cornered by a power far more intractable than an angry mob. When he was a boy, the magic of the Specks - the dapple-skinned tribes of the frontier forests - claimed Nevare as a saviour; severing his soul in two, naming his stolen half Soldier's Boy and shaping him into a weapon to halt the Gernian expansion into their lands and save their beloved ancestor trees. Until now Nevare has defied the magic, unable to accept his traitorous fate. But the magic has won: It has extinguished his once golden future, devastated his family and has now turned his own people against him. Faced with endangering the only loved-ones he has left, Nevare has no choice but to surrender to its will and enter the forest.
But surrendering to his Speck destiny is only the beginning of his trials. Before he submits completely, Nevare makes one desperate last attempt to deter the Gernians from the Barrier Mountains without causing them harm. But the magic accepts no compromise. Exhausted, Nevare can no longer suppress his traitorous Speck self, Soldiers Boy. Losing control, he becomes a prisoner in his own body; able only to watch helplessly as his other half takes Soldier's Boy is determined to stop the Gernian expansion at all cost, and unlike Nevare, he has no love, nor sympathy for his spirit-twin's world.
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Pod on 06-25-18
Kind of drags a bit and wraps up too neatly at the end. But otherwise it's a decent tale of Nevare's ups and downs as he tries to wrestle control from his Forest mage alter ego.
By Kate on 08-22-17
Not up to Hobb's usual standard...
I’ve persevered with this story to the third book as it has some very good characters, but maaaaannnn this book is so slow. It’s incredibly repetitive, nothing seems to happen for the first two thirds.
I think at least half of it could be edited out and it would read better (and this coming from someone who thinks the bigger the book, the better!) I haven’t finished yet as still listening but I think if I’d been reading this in the traditional sense I’d have given up by now, or sped through it just to see how it ends.
Even being a massive fan of Hobb’s amazing writing I can’t help but be a bit disappointed. The narrator is excellent however, loved him throughout all three books. Just a shame the plot is a so stale.