Fortress of Owls by C J Cherryh

“You are one of those powers” Emuin said. “That’s always worth remembering. Don’t act carelessly. Don’t assume the dice have only one face. It’s only by considering all the faces that you can load one of them. That’s wizardry, young lord. That’s why it means learning, difficult, farseeing learning.”

What I expected:
I have read books #1 and #2 of this series and found them engaging and entertaining. This book continues the series, so I expect more about Sihhe Lords and their magic and the key characters of the series; Tristen, Cefwyn, Ninévrisë, Idrys and Emuin.

What it was:
This book continues Tristen’s and Cefwyn’s adventures as two separate threads through the book, with messengers occasionally flitting between them, treacherous as it may be for the messenger! Cefwyn is king and settled in Guelessar while Tristen has been set as lord in Amefel and they both must manage their lives and those of the people around them as best they can; with danger lurking close by. However, the past reaches back to Tristen and he is uncertain of his future and whether he will continue past Midwinter!

The book does get a bit political in places, I guess that is to be expected where one of the main characters is a King and another is a Lord of a province! And in places I have struggled to follow exactly what is going on, for example, towards the end of the book Tristen goes somewhere (I am avoiding spoilers here by being vague – sorry!) and I ended up reading one portion about five times to gain some sort of comprehension of what was happening. Nonetheless I have enjoyed reading about the further development of Tristen’s abilities and his growth and development as a person in the world in which he lives.

I will read the next book to see how things develop for him and the other key characters in the book – in due course.

3/5 Stars (What this means…five-stars-applied-carefully)

Get your copy:
I have only been able to find second-hand copies on Amazon (which is how I got my copy). So, I have a paperback version available, free to the first person to request it, they just need to pay the postage and packaging costs.

All-New Kindle Paperwhite, 6″ High Resolution Display (300 ppi) with Built-in Light, Wi-Fi – Includes Special Offers

Official description:
In a world of constant strife, King Cefwyn and his bride Ninevrise are beset by plotters, traitors and enemies at every turn. Cefwyn’s ally is Tristen, a Shaping of the last great Sihhe wizard Mauryl, and now the King’s Steward in the land of Amefel. When war threatens once again, knowledge unfolds in Tristen’s mind of a far older and more fearsome struggle: the ancient war between wizardry and sorcery, embodied by the shadowy immortal enemies Mauryl and Hasufin. Tristen was made as a weapon in this terrible conflict. He must take up the sword and the Sihhe magic he has forsworn, for he is destiny’s own. Cefwyn, his friend and his King, faces dangers darker than armies can fight alone.
A spectacular new book in three-time Hugo winner C.J. Cherryh’s epic fantasy saga, a mythic tale of power, intrigue and magic.
“Cherryh writes with great power, conviction, and clarity”
About the Author
C.J. Cherryh is the award-winning author of many science fiction bestsellers, including Cyteen, Downbelow and Station. Fortress in the Eye of Time, Fortress of Eagles and Fortress of Owls result from Cherryh’s study of ancient magic.


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