Shadow’s Edge (The Night Angel Trilogy #2) by Brent Weeks
Publication Date: November 1, 2008 (first published January 1, 2008)
Edition: Mass Market Paperback, 636 pages
Genre: Epic/Dark Fantasy
Shadow’s Edge picks up exactly where book 1 left off – it’s a fast-paced, action-packed, page-turning, keeping you up all night reading, kind of book.
*Please not that this is second book of a series. Meaning that if you read beyond this point, you will encounter some spoilers from the first book.
Kylar Stern has rejected the assassin’s life. The Godking’s successful coup has left Kylar’s master, Durzo, and his best friend, Logan, dead. He is starting over: new city, new friends, and new profession.But when he learns that Logan might actually be alive and in hiding, Kylar is faced with an agonizing choice: will he give up the way of shadows forever and live in peace with his new family, or will he risk everything by taking on the ultimate hit?
This book was not a let down for me. I was very impressed with The Way Of Shadows (even more once I realized that it was his debut novel), and I enjoyed this one just about as much. Once again there is very little down time at all in this story, making the pages just fly by for me, and I once again fell in love, and hated at times, how well Brent was able to make me feel for the characters in the story.
We start off book two with two main plot lines, that pick up exactly where The Way of Shadows left off. Kylar has moved to Waedryn with Elene and Uly to try and start a normal life. While Kylar’s intentions are well placed and he is sincerely trying his best to give a better life to Elene and Uly, Kylar is having problem’s putting away his past life. While in PLACE, he is facing two major battles of self-control – killing and fucking. (That the wetboy motto?)
Meanwhile, back in Cenaria, we have (King) Logan Gyre living in the Hole – which is appropriately nicknamed ‘Hell’. Living in this place will cause Logan to see and experience things that he had never thought humanly possibly. Greatest off all, living in this Hell will cause him to rethink who he is, what he believes in, and what he is willing to do to survive.
The major fork in Kylar’s road comes when he learn’s that Logan, his best-friend, is still alive and is living the the Hell Hole. This puts two decisions in Kyalr’s hand: Leave his life-long best friend to rot and die in that hole, or even worse, possibly get caught by the Godking or he can go rescue Logan, leaving behind his new life and Elene, love of his life, and break her heart.
I only had one real problem this book, and that was Kylar’s obsessions with having sex with Elene. It wasn’t that I was upset with the character’s battling over this topic, but what got me was how often it was brought up. Kylar was more obsessed with sex that the horniest teenager out there, and Brent brings it up constantly. Many a conversations and pages between Kylar and Elene, are about the topic of sex, and even though out the story with other character’s there is a major theme of just sex in general. It just felt like overkill to me. Kyler wants to have sex, we get it, let’s move on.
Aside from all sex on the brain, Shadow’s Edge was just as good as book one. Brent Week’s is a magnificent story teller, with a tons of twist and turns that you will not see coming. Ofcourse he is excellent as well at keeping the pace up with both action scenes, that keep you reading at night, and a story that keeps you turning page after page.
My favorite things about Brent’s writing though is his character development. I love, and mean love, his dialog. Despite all the sex talk, conversation between characters just feel so ‘real’ to me. Nothing feels scripted or made up – it doesn’t feel like I’m reading the dialog. It feels like I am hearing two real life people having a conversation.
What was nice about this book was the focus and the bigger role Brent gave to some other less major characters. Like the Goding, Neph Dad, and Vi. Vi, by the way is awesome. I thought she had a pretty cool and interesting attitude when we first met her last time, and in Shadow’s Edge we learn a lot more about her. Aside from Durzo and Kylar, one of my favorite.
Another homerun here for Brent. This were a little frustrating with all that obsession with sex at the start of the book (but maybe it will have a greater importance later on, it is a trilogy), but couldn’t put the book dow again. While there was not as much ‘fighting’ action scenes as book one, the story itself was so much more fast paced and developed. I have to say it again. I love Brent’s characters. Its rare, but most impressive, when an author can make me feel so for their characters.