By: Peter V. Brett
Synopsis: As darkness falls after sunset, the corelings rise – demons who possess supernatural powers and burn with a consuming hatred of humanity. For hundreds of years the demons have terrorized the night, slowly culling the human herd that shelters behind magical wards – symbols of power whose origins are lost in myth and whose protection is terrifyingly fragile. It was not always this way. Once, men and women battled the corelings on equal terms, but those days are gone. Night by night the demons grow stronger, while human numbers dwindle under their relentless assault. Now, with hope for the future fading, three young survivors of vicious demon attacks will dare the impossible, stepping beyond the crumbling safety of the wards to risk everything in a desperate quest to regain the secrets of the past. Together they will stand against the night.
Format: The Warded Man is part of the Demon Cycle series. It is the first book in the series, and is 453 pages long. The Warded Man definitely gains some ideas from survival horror, but is not a scary read. It is a fantasy novel from the perspective of a few main characters. It was published in 2009 by Random House Inc.
My Thoughts: I have really enjoyed this book, it is one of the ones I actively read again and again. I really enjoyed the growth of Arlen, from young boy to adult. I liked the world building, and the small references to the past. Even the clashes of different cultures becomes very intriguing when there is not many people left in the world.
This book definitely keeps you on the edge of your seat, with a perfect balance between things you know will happen (and secretly want them too) to twists that take you by surprise. For example, someone in this book happens to be a warded man (spoilers maybe?). Shocking, I know.
The magic in this book was another factor in why I liked this book. You have very reasonable explanations for what the magic does, and how it works. The plot does not rely on magic to solve problems either. However, the source and origin of the magic is never explained. Magic in this series is something anyone can learn (It is basically drawing certain patterns in the right material) but no one understands.
Finally, the different characters in this book are truly what makes it such a unique and compelling story. You have the main characters who must learn some terrible lessons to become who they are, to minor characters whose motives can change the entire plot. The elite upper class in the story even has impact on the world through their motives and policy. While that sounds entirely logical, it is a challenging feat to have a written and imaginary society appear to behave like one from the real-world.
Overall, I highly recommend this book if you are looking for something new, exciting, and a little different. Just be warned, it is incredibly hard to put down once you start! Have you read this book before? If yes, tell me about it in the comments!!