Firion is a young merchant descended from generations of merchants. His first big break comes along when he sets out to trade with the wealthy Dwarven kingdom of Oria. He has always dreamed of visiting this grand kingdom, having heard his father describe it in detail a hundred times while he was younger. But when Firion arrives in Oria, he is jarred by the details present that contradict with the image etched into his mind. Something dark and sinister seems to be afoot in Oria, but Firion knows he is no hero. He is just a simple merchant, and what can an ordinary person do in the face of danger and deception?
Firion’s dream of trading in Oria comes true, but when he gets there, he thinks he’s imagining things… things which are not on par with the stories he heard growing up. He realizes the city is in trouble, but believes he is not the one to save it.
Despite the high fantasy cliche of the reluctant hero, Wiley wastes not one word in this short but fantastic read. From the opening line straight to the end, there is enough adventure and fast paced action to keep the reader enthralled. There is no chance for your mind to escape this story. You’ll find yourself deep in the clutches of Firion, Melody, and the rest of the cast. You’ll love Salazar almost as much as you’ll hate him. Wiley runs at a fast pace from good sell to kingdom won, at the perfect speed for an easy read on the beach, during a plane ride, or just a lazy afternoon spent in another world. This is one story I’ll read over and over again.
It’s hard to pinpoint one part of the story as it all remains in my mind, but I did find myself thinking of Allanon (from the Shannara series) in regards to the Orian knight that spurs Firion into action. As a Tolkien and Brooks fanatic this only offered more appeal to add Wiley to my new author list. I truly enjoy a good high fantasy, and this one doesn’t disappoint.
I might say the story is a little short, leaving me hungering for more of Wiley’s writing style. Thankfully, there’s a chapter from his next fantasy at the end of the book. I am definitely a fan of Wiley and look forward to his next book with great anticipation.