Two men, absolute enemies, must unite to conquer an evil greater than anything their world has ever known. One is a warrior priest ready to sacrifice anything and everything for the cause of humanity's progress; the other, a sorcerer who has survived for countless centuries by a total submission to evil. In their joint quest, both will be irrevocably changed.
There was never any doubt that I would read this novel—I enjoyed the first installment a great deal and it is part of my Science Fiction & Fantasy reading project. Not only that, but I found all three volumes at the popular used book sale in my city and had them on hand. If all of that wasn’t enough, last year at the When Words Collide writers’ conference, Peter V. Brett recommended it. He was on a panel about female characters in fantasy fiction and I came away quite impressed with his views. (He thinks that male and female characters should reflect reality, i.e. have equal numbers of male & female characters, among other things).
So, I was fired up to read this series and I have been enjoying it. I was somewhat dismayed, however, that Celia Friedman leaves behind one of her main female characters in this volume (Ciani) and I was left with only Hesseth, a female native of Erna, to carry the flag for women. Friedman does offer us the female child, Jenseny, but that doesn’t last all that long. By book’s end, we are left with just the guys.
I can certainly see, however, that Brett gathered some inspiration from this fantasy series. His Demon Cycle seems to owe a debt to the demons of this Coldfire Trilogy. One of my great pleasures in reading my long list of speculative fiction is seeing the various influences between authors, so this correlation pleases me.
Book number 311 in my Science Fiction and Fantasy Reading Project.