A Dance of Cloaks by David Dalglish : Review

A Dance of Cloaks

Thren Felhorn is the greatest assassin of his time. Marshalling the thieves’ guilds under his control, he declares war against the Trifect, an allegiance of wealthy and powerful nobles.

Aaron Felhorn has been groomed since birth to be Thren’s heir. Sent to kill the daughter of a priest, Aaron instead risks his own life to protect her from the wrath of his guild. In doing so, he glimpses a world beyond poison, daggers, and the iron control of his father.

Guilds twist and turn, trading allegiances for survival. The Trifect weakens, its reputation broken, its money dwindling. The players take sides as the war nears its end, and Thren puts in motion a plan to execute hundreds.

Only Aaron can stop the massacre and protect those he loves…

Assassin or protector; every choice has its consequences.

At a time when assassin stories have invaded bookstores everywhere A Dance of Cloaks by David Dalglish stands out as an example of what all assassins tales should be. It tells the story of Thren Felhorn, his son Aaron, and the war being fought between the thieves’ guilds and the merchant elite. Full of brutal action, strong characters, and political intrigue this is a story that grabs your attention from the beginning and never lets you go.

As someone who is not a huge fan of the dark fantasy setting that is common with these types of books I found myself unable to put this book down. Dalglish gives us a dark and grim setting without using rape to let us know just how dark and grim the world is. The violence is not needless or gratuitous and every kill or bit of torture serves to move the story along and further the plot.

There is not a single character in the book that I did not enjoy in some way. Thren Felhorn, the leader of the Spider Guild and one of the antagonists was a dark and unforgiving character who a different side of himself when it came to his son or his trusted advisers. Aaron, the protagonist, has already become one of my favorite fantasy characters. He grows and matures throughout the book and decides just who he wants to be. The rest of the characters are as well thought out and believable, easy to hate or love as they all evolve and change throughout the story.

The only parts of the book I found truly disappointing was the magic system which does not appear to be well thought out or explained in any way. It only makes an appearance when someone needs a handy way to escape jail or danger in some way. As well as the politics of the city, which left me slightly confused. I’m still not 100 percent sure exactly who the Trifect are, how they control so much of the country, and why the thieves’ guilds are waging war against them. I can honestly say I will gladly purchase the rest of this series in addition to finding out what other books David Dalglish has to offer.

I received a free copy of this publication in exchange for an honest review.

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