I listened to the Audiobook Narrated by William Dufris. He has done some great books and I think he is underrated, His work on Old Man’s War by John Scalzi was one of my favorite audio books, and once again he did a great job.
Let me start by saying I love this series but the time line is confusing. The first few books are about Rhentyll a young artist that learns he is a Imager and has to go to the Imager school.. Then book 4 goes back in time 700 years to see Quaeryt help with the founding of Solidar, the most powerful nation on Terahnar and the imager school. Quaeryt annoyed me at first but by the end of book 4 I liked him a lot. By the end of Rex Regis (Imager Portfolio, #8) he was one of my favorite characters ever. Then this book was 400 years in the future but still 300 years before the first book… . I think
Anyway I was disappointed when Madness in Solidar (Imager Portfolio #9) started a few hundred years after book 8 with the school already falling apart from bad leadership and Quaeryt all but forgotten. Books 9 and 10 are more about political intrigue than all out battle. While I like both types of books I prefer the dagger you see in front kind of action to the invisible dagger in the back that you see with politics. Metaphorically speaking of course. Literally speaking I would prefer if no one tried to stab me with anything anywhere.. OK now that we have that cleared up let us move on to other things.
The magic system is one of my favorites. I think of it as 3D mind printing. Need a mug of Ale? Image one in to your hand. Need a shield to protect you from those daggers we just talked about? Image one on your arm. Cool right? Well it’s not that simple obviously. Just like a 3D printer uses plastic, Imaging uses materials around you. If you tried to make that shield and there was no Iron in the ground near you the best you could hope for is that nothing would happen. But it is possible that you might pull all the iron out of your own blood and die instantly. Oops! Now If you tried to Image the Ale into your cup the bartender would get pretty pissed off when he sees he is out of Ale and you bought one cup last week and have been drunk ever since. Not near a tavern but you have water and hops and stuff? Well unless you actually know how to make Ale it will still taste like … ummm… something that tastes bad. I could go on about this magic system for hours but I know you have things to do so let’s get to my actual review of Treachery’s Tools:
This book starts only 13 years after Madness in Solidar. Alastar has settled in as head of the School and is now married with a daughter. The daughter was a great character and it was a nice change to have children in the story more. I know Quaeryt had kids but they were never more than names on a page really. Like I said before this one has more political wrangling but there was plenty of action in the last half or so..The only problem I had was the same problem I have with many fantasy books. That is the bad guys are SO STUPID. I mean think about it for a second. Does “let me start killing kids at the magic school so the king thinks they are weak and will stop listening to the guy that can image my heart into his hand if he gets pissed” sound like a good plan? If it does I have a evil hideout for sale that I know you will just love..
The character development and interaction was great. There was plenty of humor throughout the book and some serious feels at the end. Even with a weak plot line it was still a fun listen. Great narration and good characters kept me going through the slower parts. All in all it was one good book that is in a great series. . I am going to give it 3.75 out of 5 stars.