Conclave of Shadows
Conclave of Shadows is a 3-part fantasy series. Raymond E. Feist again based this story's context in the fantasy world of Midkemia.
A young Orosini boy watched the massacre of his entire tribe and was saved from the brink of death by two travellers. Owing a life debt to these two men, he follows their orders and though confused, allows himself to be trained in various skills. With an obligation to kill those who had wiped out his tribe, he soon realizes these two men and he share a common enemy. The story started out as an individual's goal for revenge with a hint that there is something larger at play and which soon reveals itself - issues of war first the surrounding nations, then subsequently the whole of Midkemia and even further than Midkemia.
I loved the way Raymond E. Feist twines politics and fantasy together. He lays out politics in an old-fashioned sense - in Kings' courts and between nobles, where apple polishing, betrayal and use of relationships are all too commonplace. There is also magic involved and I enjoyed myself imagining a time where assassins roam dark alleys, in search for their prey. Conclave of Shadows strikes me as a huge piece of fabric with everything tightly woven together.
The fact that it is a 3-part series with a great elaboration on the training of the young Orosini boy allowed me to understand Midkemia from his view (which is really a stranger's point of view - and are we not all strangers to Midkemia at first?) and more importantly, how he felt through the whole process. By the time I had finished the trilogy, I felt a weird sense of belonging to Midkemia.
However, while the first two books of this trilogy are very much dependent upon each other, the third book seems set to travel down another direction, as if it is the first book of a whole new series. Ah, I suppose it just shows us how large Midkemia is and how this story is but a small part of a larger picture.