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Free the Darkness (King's Dark Tidings #1)

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Raised and trained in complete seclusion at a secret fortress on the edge of the northern wilds of the Kingdom of Ashai, a young warrior called Rezkin is unexpectedly thrust into the outworld when a terrible battle destroys all that he knows. With no understanding of his life’s purpose and armed with masterful weapons mysteriously bequeathed to him by a dead king, the youn Raised and trained in complete seclusion at a secret fortress on the edge of the northern wilds of the Kingdom of Ashai, a young warrior called Rezkin is unexpectedly thrust into the outworld when a terrible battle destroys all that he knows. With no understanding of his life’s purpose and armed with masterful weapons mysteriously bequeathed to him by a dead king, the young warrior relentlessly pursues his only lead. A single elite warrior escaped during the battle and may have knowledge of who Rezkin is and who is responsible for the slaughter at the young man’s home. Rezkin must travel across Ashai to find the one man who may hold the clues to his very existence. His last orders, spoken on the lips of his dying Master, were to "Kill with conscience" and "Protect and honor your friends." Living in isolation from the outworld under a strict regimen of training and education, the young warrior has no understanding of a conscience or friends. Determined to adhere to his last orders, Rezkin extends his protection to an unlikely assortment of individuals he meets along the way, often leading to humorous and poignant incidents. As if pursuing an elite warrior across a kingdom, figuring out who he is and why everyone he knows is dead, and attempting to find these so-called friends and protect them is not enough, strange things are happening in the kingdom. New dangers begin to arise that threaten not only Rezkin and his friends, but possibly everyone in Ashai.


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Raised and trained in complete seclusion at a secret fortress on the edge of the northern wilds of the Kingdom of Ashai, a young warrior called Rezkin is unexpectedly thrust into the outworld when a terrible battle destroys all that he knows. With no understanding of his life’s purpose and armed with masterful weapons mysteriously bequeathed to him by a dead king, the youn Raised and trained in complete seclusion at a secret fortress on the edge of the northern wilds of the Kingdom of Ashai, a young warrior called Rezkin is unexpectedly thrust into the outworld when a terrible battle destroys all that he knows. With no understanding of his life’s purpose and armed with masterful weapons mysteriously bequeathed to him by a dead king, the young warrior relentlessly pursues his only lead. A single elite warrior escaped during the battle and may have knowledge of who Rezkin is and who is responsible for the slaughter at the young man’s home. Rezkin must travel across Ashai to find the one man who may hold the clues to his very existence. His last orders, spoken on the lips of his dying Master, were to "Kill with conscience" and "Protect and honor your friends." Living in isolation from the outworld under a strict regimen of training and education, the young warrior has no understanding of a conscience or friends. Determined to adhere to his last orders, Rezkin extends his protection to an unlikely assortment of individuals he meets along the way, often leading to humorous and poignant incidents. As if pursuing an elite warrior across a kingdom, figuring out who he is and why everyone he knows is dead, and attempting to find these so-called friends and protect them is not enough, strange things are happening in the kingdom. New dangers begin to arise that threaten not only Rezkin and his friends, but possibly everyone in Ashai.

30 review for Free the Darkness (King's Dark Tidings #1)

  1. 4 out of 5

    Gavin

    This was the most enjoyable new-to-me fantasy book I've read all year. It was a super fun fantasy adventure story packed with likeable characters, plenty of action, humour, and even a few touching moments. The story followed the exploits of 19 year old Rezkin. Rezkin was raised since birth in a secluded fortress to be the greatest weapon the Kingdom of Ashai has ever seen. He learned everything from weaponry to the healing arts and economics and is a master of them all. What he is not a master o This was the most enjoyable new-to-me fantasy book I've read all year. It was a super fun fantasy adventure story packed with likeable characters, plenty of action, humour, and even a few touching moments. The story followed the exploits of 19 year old Rezkin. Rezkin was raised since birth in a secluded fortress to be the greatest weapon the Kingdom of Ashai has ever seen. He learned everything from weaponry to the healing arts and economics and is a master of them all. What he is not a master of is other people. He was raised in relative isolation and follows a set of rules given to him by his mysterious masters. When battle breaks out at his home and only him and one other warrior survive Rezkin is forced from the fortress to discover who gave the orders that killed everyone he knew and what his purpose in life is. He has only one lead, the warrior who escaped, and Rezkin sets about tracking him. Unfortunately for him he is ill prepared for the realities of the Outworld, where no one seems to follow the rules, and soon finds himself in all sorts of hilarious mishaps. Rezkin managed a few final words with one of his dying masters. With his last breath the master tried to pass on the final, and most important two rules of all, Rule 1: protect and honour the king, and Rule 2: kill without conscience. Unfortunately the master chocked on his own blood so rule two came out as: kill with conscience, and he slipped into total delirium moments before death so Rule one came out as: protect and honour your friends. Rezkin is puzzled by these rules as he has no idea what a conscience is and has no friends. Still, rules are rules and Rezkin determines to find these friends while tracking the escaped warrior. The whole story was fun and hilarious. I loved Rezkin's encounters with the "Outlanders". Most of them were absolutely hilarious and a few were quite touching. It really helped the Rezkin and a lot of the other characters we met were very easy to like. I enjoyed following Rezkin as he learned to adapt to dealing with real people and loved how that affected his outlook on life. This is not a story without flaws. It was basically an adventure story and while the world building was OK it did feel like we had only scrapped the surface of the goings on in Ashai and the rest of the world. I'm sure that will change in future instalments as this one was basically Rezkin's origin story. Speaking of origin stories I should mention that Rezkin was basically a superman! His skills were so beyond those of normal people that he was practically a superhero. I was more of afraid of who he would hurt or kill than that anyone could manage to be a threat to him. As a lover of superhero books and movies I did not really find that aspect of the story to be an issue. Not that Rez is actually a superhero, he just feels like one! All in all this was a super enjoyable read and the best new fantasy book I've read in a few years. Roll on book 2! Rating: 5 stars. Audio Note: This was narrated by Nick Podehl. His performance was absolutely fantastic and he really captured the spirit of the story. He was so good that he is probably one of the reasons I enjoyed this book so much.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Mike (the Paladin)

    I read several reviews of this book before I bought it. The interesting thing is that most reviews were strongly positive, some all the way to 5 stars. In the other hand there were a goodly number" of very bad (read 1 star) ratings... There weren't many in the middle. Upon reflection I've decided to go 4 stars on it as I enjoyed the book. I plan to give a nod to what annoyed some readers (as there are some, false notes here). But as noted "on the whole" I enjoyed it. You will have seen versions o I read several reviews of this book before I bought it. The interesting thing is that most reviews were strongly positive, some all the way to 5 stars. In the other hand there were a goodly number" of very bad (read 1 star) ratings... There weren't many in the middle. Upon reflection I've decided to go 4 stars on it as I enjoyed the book. I plan to give a nod to what annoyed some readers (as there are some, false notes here). But as noted "on the whole" I enjoyed it. You will have seen versions of this protagonist before. He's raised from his first memories in a fortress by elite fighters, weapons masters and men he knows as the master teachers. He is (of course) trained up onto the "perfect weapon". That gives rise to one of the complaints about the book. The hero "can" come across as almost a super-man at times. No one can come close (well one person gives him a mild work-out) to his skill, speed or ability. Still that part of the book isn't too bad if you buy into the premise. I mean that he is this one of a kind warrior is part of the story so you need to buy into it to follow the author's story...plot. Far more problematic (for me) was the effect the protagonist has on females....they generally swoon and lose themselves to helpless lust (or something). This really annoyed some readers as the book went on and on (in some few scenes) about the guy's sculpted muscles, startling face and so on. Mostly I just found it laughable. Instead of bothering me it just caused me a few minutes of "oh good grief how silly is this" reaction. I'd say just see if it bothers you. Now as I said, I like the book. Once you get passed the things mentioned above (and if you don't find them deal breakers the book is a fun fast-moving story, brain candy. That's what I've been needing as I have been pretty burned out. I can recommend this one with "see what you think" note. Enjoy.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Jpj

    To find good fantasy seems to be getting ever harder. We've read all the plots, have seen all the figures so often that they turned into clichés. Even the parodies have become repetitive. This book however invites with a seemingly new premise; given its exuberant reviews, I could not but accept and buy a copy. The Premise We start the journey with Rezkin, a mysterious boy, who is raised within a remote fortress and trained into a killer. At the age of nineteen, he is released into the outside wor To find good fantasy seems to be getting ever harder. We've read all the plots, have seen all the figures so often that they turned into clichés. Even the parodies have become repetitive. This book however invites with a seemingly new premise; given its exuberant reviews, I could not but accept and buy a copy. The Premise We start the journey with Rezkin, a mysterious boy, who is raised within a remote fortress and trained into a killer. At the age of nineteen, he is released into the outside world, all the witnesses of his upbringing having been killed - save one. The Characters ... are portrayed one-dimensionally, without depth. This is particularly and sadly true of the protagonist, who comes a across as an infallible nigh-demigod. All men admire him, all women - and some men - lust for him. Indeed, all other characters seem to exist and in fact in some cases even are just introduced to impress upon the reader the awe that Rezkin inspires. Unfortunately, this lets the protagonist become rather uninteresting: I could not make myself care for someone into whose lap the author put everything that he needed, when he needed it. Nor do the characters develop. Rezkin remains his flawless self, his companions hardly rise above their roles as Rezkin's admirers. Even though right from the start there would have been enough chances for conflicts, Kade, the author, uses none of these opportunities to have them change and either fall or rise. The Storytelling ... relies on the protagonist's improbable fighting, stealth, healing, bargaining and etiquette skills. Where that isn't enough, Rezkin can rely on Kade to send chance to his aid. Worse, the author cluttered the narration with unnecessary details: It does not to help the story along to learn, for example, that during one journey, the hero provided the party with "a brace of hairs and two pheasants"; or that the female lead kept some plumage thinking she could find use for the pretty feathers; nor that she had to relieve herself in the woods. Then there's logical gaps, not the smallest of which IMHO gapes at the reader in the fact that from a secluded life of training to become an unhesitating assassin, Rezkin emerges with a superior sense of ethics and decency. The style ...soon gets boring. Kade overly resorts to passive description and repetitive phrases ("the young warrior..."). What really put me off was the fact that the author completely skimped on proofreading - despite his obvious need for help in spelling, grammar and word usage. Maybe you spotted one example of this negligence in the quote above (extra points for the first reader who spots the second blunder in that phrase). Unfortunately, Kade frequently sends the reader tumbling over such roadblocks. Take the following example: "Perhaps they had some hypnotic affect. He had learned in survival training that one could use shiny object to lure fish, so he decided it was possible this necklace had the same affect on people." Summary The book's premise could have been used for a captivating story. However, the author proves unable to do so. Add to this a frustrating carelessness in storytelling, grammar and spelling and one arrives at the conclusion that professional publishers, even for 'pulp' literature, exist for reason. Granted, self-published works such as this one are cheaper. However, you get what you pay for.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Hariharan Gopalakrishnan

    I thought laughably over-powered and flawless protagonists, who are phenomenally handsome to boot, and are fawned over by everyone they meet, were the sole-domain of mediocre-to-bad anime and fan-fiction. Seems I was mistaken. Why the 2 stars then? Because even though the book is filled with dialogue that sounds just a bit too silly (like 'you are a master businessman and swordsman at only 19?..' etc.) making the story-line look even more ridiculous, and has multiple absurd plot points ('the pro I thought laughably over-powered and flawless protagonists, who are phenomenally handsome to boot, and are fawned over by everyone they meet, were the sole-domain of mediocre-to-bad anime and fan-fiction. Seems I was mistaken. Why the 2 stars then? Because even though the book is filled with dialogue that sounds just a bit too silly (like 'you are a master businessman and swordsman at only 19?..' etc.) making the story-line look even more ridiculous, and has multiple absurd plot points ('the protagonist has memorized the blue prints of all the cities and important buildings in the cities throughout the kingdom...' (What??!) ), the book has enough fun with its ridiculous premise and the author seems to be in on the joke . Also the MCs powers seem to be so over the top (think saitama -level) adding to my feeling that the book is winking at its readers.

  5. 4 out of 5

    John

    4.3 stars? Why? How? This book is terrible. Do you like Mary Sue characters? The main character is the mother of all Mary Sues. I must have rolled my eyes 100 times. He is the best in the world (by far) at everything. Knows how to assume any role in society flawlessly (despite zero prior experience in the real world). Master of EVERY weapon. Knows the exact blueprints by memory of every important building in the known world....the list goes on and on. He fights 15 elite master warriors simultaneo 4.3 stars? Why? How? This book is terrible. Do you like Mary Sue characters? The main character is the mother of all Mary Sues. I must have rolled my eyes 100 times. He is the best in the world (by far) at everything. Knows how to assume any role in society flawlessly (despite zero prior experience in the real world). Master of EVERY weapon. Knows the exact blueprints by memory of every important building in the known world....the list goes on and on. He fights 15 elite master warriors simultaneously and wins. Now anyone who knows anything about fighting knows that no matter how much training or "skills" you possess you will not survive being so outnumbered. Takes over the entire criminal underworld of the known world in a sum total of a few hours. Etc...etc.... All other characters are complete incompetent ninnies, especially all of the female characters whose only purpose seems to be to drool and cat fight over Mr. Mary Sue. The writing is awful. The characters shallow. The story non-existent. And the book just ends. Poof. Nothing resolved or explained. No mysteries solved. NOTHING. How does this get such high ratings? I cannot comprehend.

  6. 4 out of 5

    ijeoma Agbaje

    going to sit on this review for a while.. mixed feelings Right so when i read the blurb of this book, i expected blood, gore more blood gore and you know just you know bad assery all through the book. i mean first sentence from the book 'Bone Snapped and flesh parted as hot blood spewed out from a jagged wound What i got: blood gore and a bad ass hero (i'm thinking cross between James Bond and the Terminator) What i did not expect: a bad ass hero that made all the women in the book want to drop t going to sit on this review for a while.. mixed feelings Right so when i read the blurb of this book, i expected blood, gore more blood gore and you know just you know bad assery all through the book. i mean first sentence from the book 'Bone Snapped and flesh parted as hot blood spewed out from a jagged wound What i got: blood gore and a bad ass hero (i'm thinking cross between James Bond and the Terminator) What i did not expect: a bad ass hero that made all the women in the book want to drop their pants and go take me i'm yours. It was quite frankly beyond annoying. i mean i know the book hints at sexual innuendo but my lord how is it that the women in this book have no freaking control??? What i did not get: Even a hint of Rezkin's purpose in the book. Look there's 483 pages, 22 chapters in this book and at the end you still have absolutely no clue like zilch, nada, zero, nothing of who on God's green earth Rezkin really is, (this is from the blurb) what strange things are happening in the kingdom, and the new dangers that arise which threathen not only Rezkin and his friends'. far as i could tell Rezkin was ontop of everything. Totally enjoyable book though but hopefully get not so much of the women with no self control and just plain Rezkin kicking ass.

  7. 5 out of 5

    edge of bubble

    rtc

  8. 4 out of 5

    Tal

    I hate seeing so much potential in a good story, reduced to something completely anti-premise. This story is just one of those books. I loved the premise of a kid training to be very OP(Overpowered) assassin-warrior-fighter-ish kind of person, and the premise of Rezkin's conspiracy/purpose and all. This doesn't deliver it. The whole stage of the training is one chapter, which the skills are based on the time skips themselves and not really making them legit. Other than that, the force of coinciden I hate seeing so much potential in a good story, reduced to something completely anti-premise. This story is just one of those books. I loved the premise of a kid training to be very OP(Overpowered) assassin-warrior-fighter-ish kind of person, and the premise of Rezkin's conspiracy/purpose and all. This doesn't deliver it. The whole stage of the training is one chapter, which the skills are based on the time skips themselves and not really making them legit. Other than that, the force of coincidence is heavy with this one. Like very heavy. I thought the book will be about a badass doing badassery, and it does, but most of it(and really most of it) is about Rezkin doesn't know how people act, and really perplexed with what happening making things funny(Which I liked, but it was too overused) and his relationship and drama with the female(s) lead(and I am not getting into the fact that every female falls for him). It got adventure things in it(A few "fighting bandits" scenes, traveling) but not enough to make the main plot look like it was just Rezkin\Frisha weird as hell. I liked the other plot with Rezkin(Won't go into details because of spoilers). Though, it still feeling real not in his character to started it. The ending was really disappointing, it doesn't end. The book just cuts out in a scene. There is no climax(unless you count the last thing that Rezkin did, which I don't feel deserve counting). No answers and not anything, really. All of the characters(I'm not sure if Rezkin included) were 1-dimensionalf flat characters for me. Rezkin is just helluva OP with no real flaws. Like, really, none. And then he does another OP thing in another field which his skills never got establish(Again, the author based Rezkin's skills in the time skips of the first chapters). With how Rezkin goes around with no social knowledge like he broke like Kvothe, it doesn't really does something to the story, except making me smile when it isn't overused. That being said, Nick Phodel is the best narrator I have heard. Sometimes, it seems(or hears, actually =p) that someone else acted a character. Sorry for not able to review this right and only(again) posting my thoughts on the book.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Caleb M.

    I was a bit skeptical going into this book after reading a friends review saying that this book was not nearly as good as the premise sounded. But I am happy to say that after going in with tempered expectations and knowing that character comes across as overpowered, I found a very enjoyable read here. Rezkin is a very fun character to follow. He is a trained warrior in the highest degree. After the masters are slayed he goes into the "outworld" and has to find his place. He meets friends and ma I was a bit skeptical going into this book after reading a friends review saying that this book was not nearly as good as the premise sounded. But I am happy to say that after going in with tempered expectations and knowing that character comes across as overpowered, I found a very enjoyable read here. Rezkin is a very fun character to follow. He is a trained warrior in the highest degree. After the masters are slayed he goes into the "outworld" and has to find his place. He meets friends and makes it his mission to keep them safe. Most of the characters in this book are well written ams fleshed out. The only character that drives me nuts is Frisha. Who can't talk about anything about how Mich she LOVES Rezkin. Its an insta love that I just can't get behind and was bothersome. Rezkin himself is a fantastic character. I think the only complaint one could say about him is that is is overpowered, and while there is an argument there for that, I found that it didn't bother me much at all. I just want to see characters kick tail and take names sometimes, and I got that in spades here. His naïveté of the "real world" makes for some good humor in the book and put a few smiles on my face. The author did a great job of switching POV seamlessly. He goes from seeing things from Rrzkin's POV to some other character in very smooth transitions that if not done well could be confusing, but I'm happy to say Kel Made pulls this off very well. My one complaint about the book is that it feels like a small portion of a bigger whole. I know there are more books in the series, but I prefer books that still have a contained story in it with a satisfying ending rather than leaving you hanging in a part that truly made me feel like I was mid book still. But with that being said, I'm still excited to jump into book 2 and find out where these characters stories end up leading them.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Anthony K

    Hmmmm... Still not sure. On to the next one

  11. 5 out of 5

    Mark

    Wow. So there I was, work about finished, end of the day browsing Amazon New Releases...waiting to get home to I can finish How to Make a Murderer and Mr. Robot as I'm on the last episodes of both. And then I come across this...I've always said, I love me a duel-wielding protagonist. So I see the cover, basic enough but the guys holding two weapons so I click, read the synopsis, not bad. Let's check it out.... I never got to watch the ending of either show, as this book basically took up my night Wow. So there I was, work about finished, end of the day browsing Amazon New Releases...waiting to get home to I can finish How to Make a Murderer and Mr. Robot as I'm on the last episodes of both. And then I come across this...I've always said, I love me a duel-wielding protagonist. So I see the cover, basic enough but the guys holding two weapons so I click, read the synopsis, not bad. Let's check it out.... I never got to watch the ending of either show, as this book basically took up my night. Read, went to hockey, had some beer, read some more. God damn, what a book. Reminded me a bit of Weapon of Flesh series by Chris A. Jackson mixed with a little Swords Of The Phoenix Queen by A.J. Strickler (if you liked either of those, read this, if you liked this, I'd say check those out). But yes, I love how it began. I loved how it ended. Basically everything about this book give me the feels, we have Rez, our MC, who's known nothing else in life but the "Rules" he must follow and training his "skills" since birth. When he's given an order at the start and follows through with it, he's suddenly left alone and with no purpose other then the last 2 Rules his dying master bestowed upon him (which is a twist in itself). So he's thrust into the world, a weapon forged from birth, without any inkling on how the outside world works. Oh he knows stuff, he was trained so well he could pretend to be anything, soldier, merchant, trader etc. but he decides to just be himself. There were so many scenes that were outright hilarious, one that comes to mind is when he's sitting in an Inn and observes a couple having lunch. They are holding hands and looking into each others eyes, he's confused as to why the woman is laughing during this interrogation and comes to the conclusion that the man is holding her hand and looking into her eyes to make sure she's not lying...a good practice he thinks. So here is our MC, the epitome of a warrior, but he's unable to understand simple concepts like "friend". He just knows he's supposed to protect and honor friends, so that's what he does. And this starts his adventure into the wide world, or outworld as he calls it. One of the best parts of this book was reading how he's seeing certain scenarios, then seeing it from the characters around him perspective. Loved these moments, he's just following his some few hundred Rules that were ingrained in him since birth and wondering why no one else is, others see him as either being honorable, noble and to some he's just purely murderous. When he meets a thief who failed at his attempt to pick Rez's pocket, well, he's so disgusted with the poor attempt he decides to do something about it (don't mess with the Raven). There is so much in this book though that we have yet to discover too, why was he sent there as a baby? Why was he ordered to do what he did at the start? Who is he anyways??? The author gives you some hints as to who Rez could be (and that name is important too), but we still don't fully know. Anyways, loved the action, there's no shying away from combat for Rez, he just does what he has to do as long as its part of his Rules. Liked how Rez learned new terms on his journey, I actually lol'd when he was told he had a girl friend and he likened it to a promotion, from friend to girl friend. Need book 2 now, can't wait to continue our journey with Rez aka. the Raven.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Dona

    Honestly, Free The Darkness’s was an impulsive buy for me. I instantly liked the blurb and the eye-catching warrior on the cover. Now that I am done reading this book I think it is fair to say, it is not everybody’s cup of tea. It takes a little getting used to. Once you get over the constantly shifting point of view every few sentences and accept that our male protagonist, Rezkin, is medieval times superman, you are in for a very enjoyable read. Although I cannot argue about the author’s choice Honestly, Free The Darkness’s was an impulsive buy for me. I instantly liked the blurb and the eye-catching warrior on the cover. Now that I am done reading this book I think it is fair to say, it is not everybody’s cup of tea. It takes a little getting used to. Once you get over the constantly shifting point of view every few sentences and accept that our male protagonist, Rezkin, is medieval times superman, you are in for a very enjoyable read. Although I cannot argue about the author’s choice of writing style, I can certainly address Rezkin’s overpowered portrayal. A good portion of Goodreads reviews complains that his character is not relatable which is true. But what most didn’t seem to grasp was that author meant it so. That simple factor is the foundation of the entire premise. If the author ‘humanized’ Rezkin’s character, Free The Darkness would be just another adventure story. However, we have to remember at the beginning of the book, the author dedicated an entire chapter to let the reader know that Rezkin’s skills didn’t simply magically appear. They were accomplished through trial and error and years and years worth of relentless training. Raised in isolation with a specific set of rules ingrained into his mind, he knows nothing else. His entire life, up until he was nineteen years old, has been about excelling at things his masters deemed necessary, in order to accomplish a purpose that the first book does not reveal. Therefore, we cannot blame Rezkin for being Rezkin. We simply have to accept that he is better than a normal human being. That being said, I felt the author could have toned it down a tad bit when describing Rezkin from others’ point of view as he never failed to take upon reminding the reader how intimidating and powerful Rezkin is. Furthermore, in my point of view, there was only one formidable character who defied Rezkin’s authority. The rest were conveniently amicable and compliant to his whims. Some were acceptable as those characters were described as naive and innocent but some simply complied which felt weak. So, once I came to terms with these, I truly enjoyed Rezkin’s interactions with the ‘Outworlders’ once he was let loose into the society. It was fascinating and funny to watch him trying to comprehend and justify certain things ‘Outworlders’ did. “He thought he understood, now. Apparently, there was a hierarchy among friends. Girl Friend was actually a title issued to the superior female friend. If Frisha was his Girl Friend, did that make Tam his Boy Friend, or was it only a female distinction?” Another thing that needs to be taken into account is the amount of research the author has put in when writing the book. Though the weaponry and fighting techniques were a given when writing a successful fantasy adventure, he has not forgotten to look into social etiquettes and mannerism in order to build the world he needed. Overall, Free The Darkness is not without flaws BUT it is a very interesting and unique book that deserves better. After all, we have only skimmed the surface of the plot in the first book. So, please don’t be quick to judge. Give it a chance and it will certainly grow on you.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Sarah

    Rez is perfect and has no flaws and insanely gorgeous ... apparently. The female "leads" are all simple women with no depth/character and all they do is fawn over Rez. The females all annoyed me (catty, petty, whiny, fighting over man) ... stereotype much? Reaylin was decent bc she had a little attitude and could fight. But that's it. It seemed very Tween oriented, but I don't think a tween would enjoy this. I was expecting way more, especially with the 4.5 star ratings. Not sure who was reviewi Rez is perfect and has no flaws and insanely gorgeous ... apparently. The female "leads" are all simple women with no depth/character and all they do is fawn over Rez. The females all annoyed me (catty, petty, whiny, fighting over man) ... stereotype much? Reaylin was decent bc she had a little attitude and could fight. But that's it. It seemed very Tween oriented, but I don't think a tween would enjoy this. I was expecting way more, especially with the 4.5 star ratings. Not sure who was reviewing this and living it.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Amanda Kern

    I couldn't put it down This review may contain spoilers.... imagine if you have a boy and you raise him. You teach him nothing but the basics of the world and how to survive. Then you throw him out into with no real purpose but the rules and skills he has been taught. Then you have this book..... I will be reading the next one.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Brad Harris

    This book was amazing. One of my favorites of the genre

  16. 5 out of 5

    Arkadeb

    This book is odd. The protagonist is an OP utterly badass master manipulator, who has all the combat skills, all the information, all the abilites. Also he is extremely noble, the complete gentleman, totally irreproachable in terms of character. Also, very conveniently he lacks knowledge of basic modes of social interaction, though far from hindering him, it makes him more attractive. The ladies swoon over him, the men admire him, entire institutions bow to him.... basically he is the ultimate O This book is odd. The protagonist is an OP utterly badass master manipulator, who has all the combat skills, all the information, all the abilites. Also he is extremely noble, the complete gentleman, totally irreproachable in terms of character. Also, very conveniently he lacks knowledge of basic modes of social interaction, though far from hindering him, it makes him more attractive. The ladies swoon over him, the men admire him, entire institutions bow to him.... basically he is the ultimate OP protagonist. The story is meandering and rather pointless. There is no real climax, no real revelation of a larger picture or higher stakes. Basically its a story about a man being badass. And not in a good way.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Ian Wickes

    I tried, I really did. Initially the book was quite engaging, telling the tale of an unnamed child growing up learning the "rules" and "skills", a constant theme throughout. Unfortunately, it does not continue in that vein. The protagonist Rezkin (terrible name) is in more danger in the opening paragraphs than at any other time in the book. The author has created a character that is a fantasy superman: all-knowing, utterly unbeatable in combat, indescribably handsome, possessed of a feline grace I tried, I really did. Initially the book was quite engaging, telling the tale of an unnamed child growing up learning the "rules" and "skills", a constant theme throughout. Unfortunately, it does not continue in that vein. The protagonist Rezkin (terrible name) is in more danger in the opening paragraphs than at any other time in the book. The author has created a character that is a fantasy superman: all-knowing, utterly unbeatable in combat, indescribably handsome, possessed of a feline grace (but of course), with eyes that radiate icy calm, demonic fury, and all points in between, I could go on but you get the point. He has been trained to mimic everyone and everything, naturally to utter perfection. Knows all languages, all customs, even all layouts to all buildings that he has never visited. But bizarrely, in all of this training, he has never had mentioned the concept of friendship, and despite knowing everything also has no concept of relationships with the fairer sex. Both rather odd omissions for the education in everything, ever, that the protagonist has undergone. By the age of 19. Yes, he is this flawless paragon/utterly remorseless killer and all by the age of 19. Every challenge he faces is nonchalantly brushed aside. Taking over a thieves guild? Takes maybe 2 minutes. Taking over all the thieves guilds in the city, the work of an hour at most. At one point (while taking over....another thieves guild) he is referenced in passing to have killed 22 people in so doing. It is just garbage. The author's own endless flattery of his protagonist is almost as tedious as the fawning that every character in the book insists upon lavishing upon him. If the lack of any challenges, twists or cleverness to the story wasn't bad enough, the prose is clumsy and the spelling abysmal. Rezkin at one stage hunts and comes back with "a brace of hairs (sic) and two rabbits" - the author clearly not realising that 'a brace' means two, and lets not mention hares... He performs 'summersaults'. Worse than the spelling is the lurching descriptions in between - the amount of times that a conversation or interaction is heading in one direction and then for no real reason (except maybe to allow Rezkin to be omnipotent) suddenly goes in completely the opposite. It is just so awkward. And the ending? The first book has no climax, no reveal (who is Rezkin, why do people recognise his name, what actually is his purpose, why did everyone at the fort he grew up in get killed?), instead it dribbles to a halt as if the author has just slapped down a demarcation that says "Right, that's book one done, onto book two" with no rhyme or reason for doing so. Yes I persevered and read the whole thing for you, so you don't have to - I am a nice reviewer right? I had this marked at two stars just because I was intrigued at the start and I suspect the author is quite young - I was inclined to give him a bit of a break. Having just written this though, I honestly can't score it higher than one. It is just a bad book and one you shouldn't waste your time with. Why it has such high scoring reviews is beyond me.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Tina

    Ich packs nicht mehr. Abgebrochen bei 45 % etwa. Das ist mit Abstand das schlechteste Buch, was ich in diesem Jahr gelesen habe. Stümperhafte und vor allem dämliche Figuren und ein Held, der einfach ALLES kann. Weshalb sollte ich etwas über ihn lesen wollen? Jeder Kampf ist witzlos, weil er ohnehin gewinnt, ohne einen Schweißtropfen zu verlieren. Und die "Frauen" in dem Buch hecheln ihm nach, obwohl der sozial inkompetent ist. Unfassbar, ich könnte mich noch Stunde beschweren. Mal sehen, wie ich Ich packs nicht mehr. Abgebrochen bei 45 % etwa. Das ist mit Abstand das schlechteste Buch, was ich in diesem Jahr gelesen habe. Stümperhafte und vor allem dämliche Figuren und ein Held, der einfach ALLES kann. Weshalb sollte ich etwas über ihn lesen wollen? Jeder Kampf ist witzlos, weil er ohnehin gewinnt, ohne einen Schweißtropfen zu verlieren. Und die "Frauen" in dem Buch hecheln ihm nach, obwohl der sozial inkompetent ist. Unfassbar, ich könnte mich noch Stunde beschweren. Mal sehen, wie ich es mit der Reading Challenge mache. Vielleicht lese ich noch ein weiteres, aber das hier keine Seite mehr!

  19. 5 out of 5

    Flying Monkey

    Entertaining book. Why only 3 stars? 1. Rezkin is a little too perfect. 2. Rezkin is too naive and too all knowing. 3. Every girl falls head over heels for him. But still an enjoyable book even with these big negatives.

  20. 4 out of 5

    C.W.

    Really enjoyed this one! Full video review: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=63PZ-...

  21. 4 out of 5

    Joakim

    Pleasant find Stumbled upon this book. Didn't really know what to expect but it hit me straight away and i couldn't put it down. Looking forward to the next one!

  22. 5 out of 5

    Rissa

    4.5⭐ 4.5⭐️

  23. 4 out of 5

    Brent

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. The book tells the journey of the weapon, Rezkin. This book is probably the most fun book I've read, where we see Rezkin go through things with minimal effort. He's basically the perfect being. The book felt very easy to read, the pacing simple. The way the book switches POVs was kinda weird at first, where the subject suddenly changes in the third person narrative, but after getting used to it I felt it contributed a lot to how easy it was to read. It's also new to me that a book set in the medi The book tells the journey of the weapon, Rezkin. This book is probably the most fun book I've read, where we see Rezkin go through things with minimal effort. He's basically the perfect being. The book felt very easy to read, the pacing simple. The way the book switches POVs was kinda weird at first, where the subject suddenly changes in the third person narrative, but after getting used to it I felt it contributed a lot to how easy it was to read. It's also new to me that a book set in the medieval ages (that's what I got from the swords) would be this fun, which I usually find in urban fantasies instead. I found the book divided into two parts, Rezkin's interactions with his so called "friends", and his darker interactions with the underworld, switching between the two. His moments with his friends and the general good society was very enjoyable in a funny way. It's great to see their reactions on this perfect being, especially the girls. Most of the characters weren't too likable though, where really I only liked Jim and the general's characters. I also like the fact that his true self is hidden on some of his friends, which makes for interesting reactions. It does get ridiculous sometimes though that some of the characters are just oblivious. The girls that likes him aren't too likable, and when he proposed to Frisha just because of Rule #1 I thought that was pretty stupid. Hopefully later he finds a better romantic interest, though I wouldn't be surprised if in the end he doesn't find any (though I'm sure he'll have multiple female admirers in the process). We see more action on Rezkin's interactions with the criminal underworld. While reading I felt he took over so easily that even I didn't really see what was so impressive about what he did. Later on when he took over the Assassin's Guild and basically became a god to them, and while Markum was explaining to the group about this so called "Raven" did I realize. Rezkin is deemed a weapon, and is possibly the strongest being in the series (I think that's the point). When his chest starts hurting, we see how he is supposed to not feel anything (from his training), but the human in him says otherwise. With this, and his plans to make the lives on the children of the underworld better do we know that he's a good man at heart. His character reminds me a bit of Weed from the Korean web novel Legend of the Moonlight Sculptor. Weed is basically a god at the MMO game he's playing, but his interactions with his friends are similar to Rezkin's. It's like some god level player going on a journey with low level players, teaching them stuff on the way. They are also both simple, and even though they have great power, they just do what's necessary and never boast on their skills (thanks to one of the Rules for Rezkin). Another similar character to Rezkin would be Tatsuya from The Irregular at Magic High School japanese light novel series. Tatsuya is crazy strong, and though they knew him as skilled, they don't really know his full strength, very similar to Rezkin's experience. Tatsuya also shares Rezkin's stoic, but protective behavior, as well his fare share of fan girls. I didn't really have a favorite scene on this series, probably because I felt it wasn't too serious so there's not too much emotional investment on what's happening. I just expect Rezkin to kick ass. I did remember the part where he was entering the Serpent's den and when he got shot by a crossbow he basically caught the arrow and redirected it with one spin. It was ridiculous but so good. I also enjoy his interactions with the female characters, which almost always makes me laugh. The switching of POVs helps a lot on this, making the drama so much more enjoyable. Overall the book is great, a very fun read which is refreshing to see on a medieval setting. The was also very easy to read, me finishing in around 2 days despite its many pages. Hopefully the many pages remins the same on the later books too.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Lundos

    A good first person story about Rezkin (view spoiler)[aka Gary Stu the emotional Robot (hide spoiler)] and his way into world of ordinary men. Rezkin has been trained from birth in Rules and Skills, which includes basically every thing you can imaging necessary to be a Master warrior/assassin/thief/healer or any more ordinary skills and he excels at everything. Except the final part of the training goes terribly wrong so when Rezkin finally learns of Rule 1 and 2. The writing is decent, the paci A good first person story about Rezkin (view spoiler)[aka Gary Stu the emotional Robot (hide spoiler)] and his way into world of ordinary men. Rezkin has been trained from birth in Rules and Skills, which includes basically every thing you can imaging necessary to be a Master warrior/assassin/thief/healer or any more ordinary skills and he excels at everything. Except the final part of the training goes terribly wrong so when Rezkin finally learns of Rule 1 and 2. The writing is decent, the pacing good and its actually fun when Rezkin tries to figure out the Rules of Friends. 3,7*

  25. 4 out of 5

    Zurlo Enrico

    2.5 stars actually. Yeah....sometimes it was funny but all the misleading conversations and facts became too much after a while. Also Rez is really too much...there must be a good reason for him being so good because from what we got in this book is not enough to explain his talents.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Booksgotit

    Amazing book, love the story and the main character. Rezkin? Perfection. Literally.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Jorid Sørli

    Well... I was entertained that's for sure. Is it great writing? No, but it is a lot of fun!

  28. 5 out of 5

    Christopher Vance

    What a unique vision for a story with captivating characters who hold you to the page till the very end. Rezkin is an extremely interesting main character who is constantly striving to find his place within the world that he has found himself forced into. For a man who's only wishes are to prove his worth to his masters, finish what they started and to follow the rules set forth by them; number 1 being, Protect and honor your friends; it can be an extremely difficult undertaking. Rezkin is the m What a unique vision for a story with captivating characters who hold you to the page till the very end. Rezkin is an extremely interesting main character who is constantly striving to find his place within the world that he has found himself forced into. For a man who's only wishes are to prove his worth to his masters, finish what they started and to follow the rules set forth by them; number 1 being, Protect and honor your friends; it can be an extremely difficult undertaking. Rezkin is the master of every skill at the young age of 19 due to his rigorous training regimen set forth by his masters when he arrived at the secluded fort as an infant, and yet has almost zero understanding on how to interact with those he finds in the outside world. He is a man of many facets who at times can come off as having no feelings, but that is do to his upbringing that focused on such a wide scope of training but failed to impart on him how to coexist with those who lack his total understanding of the Rules. This causes Rezkin to re-evaluate much of what he was taught and how he can coexist with those he finds himself amongst his travels. For those who love a well written protagonist within a well thought out storyline, this book is for you.

  29. 4 out of 5

    M.L.

    This is a sublimely enjoyable read. The plot and humor has exceeded my expectations. The idea of having a exquisitely combat-trained young man let loose upon the world with barely any idea of social mores is well executed in this book. I enjoyed the protagonist's antics, but I relished the reactions of the people around him even more.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Vusani Ndlovu

    What do I think? "Please, Sir, I Want Some More" No seriously, this book is an amazing, well thought-out masterpiece. I never put it down, from like 7pm till I got to work the next morning. Let's just say I had a coffee filled day!

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