To begin, I must urge you to immediately acquire Penric’s Demon and Penric and the Shaman. While this current novella would be a demonically enjoyable read by itself, there are past experiences the maturing young sorcerer and his resident demon(s) have endured that would deepen your appreciation.
Now a Divine, a Sorcerer, and a Master Physician, Penric and his otherworldly partner(s) Desdemona, undertake a covert diplomatic courier’s task and voyage to Cedonia. They are immediately betrayed, set upon, and overwhelmed. In fact, Penric is skulled.
Dropped into an oubliette of a dungeon, self-healing at some verminous cost, he turns a dampening execution into an escape…using cold concentration.
A second point of view has already, by that juncture, introduced Nikys, a well-rounded lady, and her obstreperous military brother, Arisaydia.
Penric’s past, training, and traumas become revealed, with adroit overview/dialogues by the writer and viewpoints shifting between Nikys and Penric. Despite pursuits, combats, terrible woundings, and diverse intents, an attraction-becoming-love emerges, adding yet another wrenching motive to an already fragrant stew of intrigue. Of course any personal attraction by Penric involves an additional dozen components, and mysterious opposition spices up the cauldron.
Complex, developed, and increasingly attractive, this series shines!!
|Lois McMaster Bujold
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|Science Fiction & Fantasy