The second instalment of The Riftwar Legacy, Assassins reveals Feist at his storytelling best. There is intrigue, humour and breakneck action aplenty here from the undisputed master of epic fantasy. Fresh back from the front, another foe defeated, Prince Arutha arrives to find all is not well in Krondor. A series of apparently random murders has brought an eerie quiet to the city. Where normally the streets are bustling with merchants and tricksters, good life and night life, now there seems to be a self-imposed curfew at sundown. Mutilated bodies have been turning up in the sewers, the Mockers' demense. The Thieves' Guild has been decimated - men, women, children, it matters not. The head of the Mockers is missing, presumed dead. Those few who survived the terrible attacks are lying low. Very low. The Crawler, it seems, is back in town. And he's being helped by others, more ruthless than he. Can it be the Nighthawks again? The Prince enlists his loyal Squire James to find out. If anyone can unravel what's happening in the bowels of Krondor, he can. He knows the sewers like the back of his hand. Afterall, as Jimmy the Hand, he grew up there. Meanwhile, the retinue of the Duke of Olasko has arrived suddenly at the palace, a week ahead of schedule but with no apologies and many demands. They say they are here to hunt. But to hunt what. Pug's son William, on his first posting as a knight-lieutenant, must escort them into the wilds. It should have been a straightforward mission...
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Something is rotten in the state of Krondor: the Mockers, the gang of goons and bullyboys that were James's colleagues back when he was known as Jimmy the Hand, have been decimated in vicious fighting on the rooftops and in the sewers. That, and a seemingly random slew of murders, tips off the Crown that some outside concern is attempting an underworld power-grab right under the Prince's nose. Raymond E. Feist's second Riftwar book, Krondor the Assassins, continues the action of Krondor the Betrayal with Prince Arutha and Squire James back in the Midkemian capital, returning triumphantly from their campaign against the Tsurani magician Makala and moredhel headman Delekhan. But Arutha quickly sends James, née Jimmy, back into the city's seedy underbelly to investigate, and in the process he forms a sort of Krondorian secret service. Could the assassins of the Nighthawks be responsible, or perhaps some Keshian interest? James, naturally, begins to suss the situation out, which becomes even more complicated when a hunting party including the visiting Crown Prince of Olasko is beset by shape-shifting magicians.
James and Arutha, both classic feel-good-fantasy heroes--the type of guys with a twinkle in their eye who seem virtually indestructible--eventually track their enemies down to a deserted Keshian fortress, facing assorted assassins, demons, and evil priests in the process. Not the most imaginative or compelling fantasy around, but The Assassins is still a fun romp for fans of the Krondor band. --Paul HughesAbout the Author:
Raymond E. Feist was born and raised in Southern California. He was educated at the University of California, San Diego, where he graduated with honours in Communication Arts. He is the author of the bestselling and critically acclaimed Riftwar Saga (Magician, Silverthorn, and A Darkness at Sethanon).
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