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Format: Format Kindle
This collection of stories fills in the gaps left in the major books.
In the first story, "Savages", we get the background story of Brevis, the gnome who brought about the schism in Sanctuary and the resulting exodus of about half its members when Orion left. In this story, we also see more of Cyrus' period of mourning after the death of Narstron, and we get to see the process that took place as Cyrus learned to first trust, and later on, to actually like and respect Vaste, the Troll.
The second story, "A Familiar Face", concerns Cyrus, his ex-wife, Imina, and the memory gaps left when someone is killed and resurrected.
The third story, "The Last Moments of the Gezhvet" shows us what exactly happened when Narstron was killed, by who and why, and we see that Cyrus was right when he told the Gatekeeper that he knew Narstron died as a warrior. We also learn more about soul rubies, and about who Malpravus is and what his motives and goals are.
The Fourth story, "The Greenest Fields" concerns Martaina. We learn how she grew up, as an Iliarad'ouran Elf, one of those who eschewed the more modern ways of the City Elves and eked out a living in the forest. She was one of the last of these, and, as her family is wiped out by the King's guards, she leaves for a life outside of the woods.
The fifth story, "A Princess of Sovar", is about Erith Frostmoor, born and orphaned in Sovar. We get to see what society is like there, the stratification and absence of any way for those on the bottom to climb higher. We learn a bit about Terian's father, Amenon Lepos, and see the process for weeding out those with magical ability. We watch while Erith is elevated above her peers, the dregs of society, simply because she has magical ability, and transferred to the Leagues for training.
The sixth, and final story, is the most important to us going forward. We learn about Aisling, where she came from, who she is, and why she is outside of Saekaj Sovar. It's the most surprising of all of them, and has enormous implications for the overall series as it continues. As a result of this story, we get to see a lot of Saekaj, and how the upper strata lives. We see inside the Sovereign's palace, meet several principal characters who will feature prominently in the main series, or in Terian's, and finally understand what motivates Aisling in her quest to seduce Cyrus. It's a chilling story.
This is a must read addition to the series, but one that shouldn't be read until after Book Four, because of the spoilers it contains. It should be read before Terian's series begins (Thy Father's Shadow), which is the more fascinating of these two extra books, simply because it's the beginning of a trilogy, and therefore has much more character development and detail than the short stories are able to have.
Buy it. It's a 5 Star addition to the main story.