Onetime lieutenant of the evil Emperor Jagang, known as “Death’s Mistress” and the “Slave Queen”, the deadly Nicci captured Richard Rahl in order to convince him that the Imperial Order stood for the greater good. But it was Richard who converted Nicci instead, and for years thereafter she served Richard and Kahlan as one of their closest friends–and one of their most lethal defenders.
Now, with the reign of Richard and Kahlan finally stabilized, Nicci has set out on her own for new adventures. Her first job being to keep the unworldly prophet Nathan out of trouble…
I received this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest review. I started this book once before when it first came in and had to set it aside. I don’t know if I wasn’t in the proper mind-set to read an epic fantasy or not, so I thought I would try again and have enjoyed it immensely. Terry Goodkind is an author who is good at writing fantasy adventures, excellent fight scenes, and strong, fantastical characters.
I think because there’s been soooo much written like this in the fantasy genre of late, in order for a new series to succeed without causing eye-rolling at the series launch announcement, characters have to be uniquely different, the world-building must be completely original and incredibly laid out and the premise must not sound like all the rest. I also think that a lot of fantasies like “The Nicci Chronicles” need to be shortened and not drawn out to the point where the story loses substance and purpose.
With all that said, Terry Goodkind has begun a new series with “Death Mistress” but he’s done it using old characters from another series… Is this a good thing? Hmmm I’m on the fence about this. The other problem I foresee with this novel is for those who have not read the ‘other’ series to know and fully understand who and what the Protagonist is all about. Without that backstory build-up, the reader may find themselves thinking the characters shallow and lacking in substance. The world-building in “Death Mistress” is lacking because the setting is previously based on a world written about in another series, so once again, the reader may not appreciate this.
I did like the journey the characters were on, and the simplicity of the plot goal, but for a thick fantasy read… it just felt done before. I do like Terry Goodkind’s voice and his concepts are exciting most times, filled with great adventures, excellent character interactions and thrilling quests. But, I am an avid Stephen R. Donaldson reader and love fantasy series that are similar.
Overall, I’d say this is an entertaining read. It’s lengthy with perhaps a bit of filler that really wasn’t needed and would have read better if shortened.
Any fantasy reader will enjoy this first book. I’m looking forward to seeing what’s coming next.
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