Monday, January 16, 2012

The Scar-Sergey Dyachenko and Marina Dyachenko; translated by Elinor Huntington

The Scar

Sergey Dyachenko and Marina Dyachenko; translated by Elinor Huntington

Tor, Feb 28 2012, $24.99

ISBN: 9780765329936

In Kavarren, being a member of the highly adulated elite guard, Lieutenant Egert gets whatever he desires. He wants Toria who is engaged to Dinar, but that lesser male is no impediment to arrogant Egert as he kills his rival in a duel. Observing the atrocity, the Wanderer defiantly “names” Egert as a bully and forces him into a duel. The Wanderer cuts Egert’s face leaving him with a painful scar; while his arrogance is drained into cowardice.

Fearful, he deserts his regiment, his family and his friends. Egert reaches the city where grieving Toria lives with her father Luayan the mage university dean. Whereas his daughter loathes Dinar’s killer, Luayan provides him shelter. Every time Egert looks at Toria, he feels shame. He needs her forgiveness before he can grant himself the same. Egert soon faces the Servants of Lash; though he prefers flight Toria’s visage makes him stay while a plague ravages the city. Finally Egert senses he will face the judgment of the Wanderer but feels that is easier than the judgment of Toria.

The Scar is a terrific allegorical second chance at redemption and life sword and sorcery thriller. Character driven by Egert and Toria, the deep storyline focuses on the pair’s lost zest for living following his atrocity. Although the enigmatic Wanderer never quite comes across as to who or what he is (perhaps because this is his second book of a four novel series in which the first entry has not been translated as far as I can tell). Still fans will relish this strong soul saving saga as the prime protagonists must find a way to forgive if they are to save a city under siege.

Harriet Klausner

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