Let me get this out now - this was a damn good book.
Okay, now for the review.
It's been quite some time since I read a standard medieval fantasy novel. The first time I ever read that style of fantasy was when I was introduced to the world of Dragonlance. Back then, I had a major crush on Raistlin - secretive, tortured mage who had golden skin and strange eyes. Those books made quite an impact on my life and I enjoyed them tremendously. When I began reading The Truth of Betrayal by Jason Fedora, as published by Dark Oak Press, I wasn't really sure what to expect. After all, it had been some time since I last read a fantasy novel in that setting. However, once I was introduced to Nickadeamus, or Nick as his friends call him, I knew that I was in for a treat.
The story is thus: the world known as Asterioth has a dark cloud hanging over it, taking the shape of the Dark Emperor, the nemesis of all that is good and right in the world. Nick, a powerful sorcerer, learns that Mordkom, his one time friend and former member of Barddon Drod, has stolen the Book of Forgotten Sorrows and plans to give it to the Dark Emperor. Nick and his allies must race against time in order to catch Mordkom before he hands over such a powerful book to their enemy, all the while facing shadow assassins, Wraiths and their mind worms, Death Priests, and sadly, each other. Loyalties are tested, enemies wear friendly faces, and lies become truths.
Fedora is a wonderful storyteller - he weaves the tale around you, creating a nice blanket on a cold day that you snuggle in and refuse to leave. He writes in a way that makes you truly there with Nick and his friends as they take on their foes. I will freely admit that he grossed me out twice while reading the book - it takes a lot to gross me out yet he accomplished it. Even the gross scenes still captivated me: do NOT eat Vietnamese food while reading the Wraith scene. I learned that lesson the hard way yet I still enjoyed my lunch, albeit a lot slower than before. I also have to give him mad props in creating the shadow assassins - well done, old boy! The explanation behind their power was frightening and fascinating to read.
Several days ago, Fedora let me know that he had completed the second book and had turned it in to our publisher. That was good news indeed.
Way to go, Fedora. You've made a fan out of me!
By the way - there WILL be a tea based on this book. Stay tuned for details!