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The Brand of the Warlock

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A hooded man, his face marred by a mysterious black brand, walks the Plain of Savlos. Some say he has the power to summon demons. Others say he is the only one who can vanquish them. His name is Konrad, and he has a secret....


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A hooded man, his face marred by a mysterious black brand, walks the Plain of Savlos. Some say he has the power to summon demons. Others say he is the only one who can vanquish them. His name is Konrad, and he has a secret....

30 review for The Brand of the Warlock

  1. 5 out of 5

    Jeff Miller

    Five stars for pure enjoyability. Starts out strong and keeps up the pace. As the first of five novels, it opens up the possibilities while making the first entry whole in itself. Kroese once again astounds me in his ability to turn out straight ahead SF and Fantasy, along with humorous novels in those genres.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Robert Defrank

    Kroese exceeds himself with the first in his latest series, crafting a main character who is a mystery within a mystery wrapped in an enigma. From the first chapter on, we never know what he’s going to do next, and we can’t wait to find out. The novel has an old school feel of the classics, transposed to a fantasy setting. The Conte of Monte Cristo is the most obvious reference I could pick out, with a main character suffering imprisonment in another’s stead, but it has a feel many a classic bild Kroese exceeds himself with the first in his latest series, crafting a main character who is a mystery within a mystery wrapped in an enigma. From the first chapter on, we never know what he’s going to do next, and we can’t wait to find out. The novel has an old school feel of the classics, transposed to a fantasy setting. The Conte of Monte Cristo is the most obvious reference I could pick out, with a main character suffering imprisonment in another’s stead, but it has a feel many a classic bildungsroman adventure where a youth seeks his fortune and finds danger that tests him to his limits and brings him to strange, enchanting and terrifying splaces. The story is told strictly from our main character’s perspective, but there is a sense there is a lot going on around him, behind his back and before he came on-scene. More, while things are told from his perspective, he does not share everything with the reader in terms of his insights and plans. We are constantly taken by surprise both by what others have done and what he has just done. He then explains things and we wonder why we didn’t see it. The author is mostly known for his humorous novels, and this one has it’s share of hard-edged humor, but is played serious for the most part, and we’re rooting for the hero all the way.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Maria Riegger

    Another great humorous sci-fi book by Rob Kroese! It's more serious than his Mercury series, but still has plenty of humorous elements. Love the plot of this book and excited to read the next one in the series! Another great humorous sci-fi book by Rob Kroese! It's more serious than his Mercury series, but still has plenty of humorous elements. Love the plot of this book and excited to read the next one in the series!

  4. 4 out of 5

    Karina

    I think it was a well-written book and I had fun listening to the audiobook. It was very easy to immerse into the world. I enjoyed the first part more because ending was rushed. There was too much “deus ex machina” solutions. I also missed character development because I didn’t know much about the people around the protagonist. Anyways I recommend this book!

  5. 4 out of 5

    Jeffrey Schmieder

    A man is falsely imprisoned for a crime he didn't commit, then is mysteriously released years later. Part of a five book series I really enjoyed the adventures of Konrad. I don't know if the author intended this, but the book really had the first person narrative of Burroughs' John Carter and I liked it a lot. Will be buying the next books soon. A man is falsely imprisoned for a crime he didn't commit, then is mysteriously released years later. Part of a five book series I really enjoyed the adventures of Konrad. I don't know if the author intended this, but the book really had the first person narrative of Burroughs' John Carter and I liked it a lot. Will be buying the next books soon.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Kristin Crocker

    Kroese creates a world with just enough detail for things to make sense, without a lot of confusing extraneous detail. What I really appreciated about this book was the pacing - the twists and revelations come often enough to keep things interesting, but without overwhelming the reader. A great start to what I'm sure is an interesting series. Kroese creates a world with just enough detail for things to make sense, without a lot of confusing extraneous detail. What I really appreciated about this book was the pacing - the twists and revelations come often enough to keep things interesting, but without overwhelming the reader. A great start to what I'm sure is an interesting series.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Roh

    Solid writing but I just couldnt get into the MC. Edit: I take it back.. I tried to push on a bit farther... And while my impression of the MC got no better or worse the writing style seemed to get more and more... Long winded... Why say something in a couple well crafted sentences when you can say it in five times as many? Why you ask? So you don't piss off your readers..... Solid writing but I just couldnt get into the MC. Edit: I take it back.. I tried to push on a bit farther... And while my impression of the MC got no better or worse the writing style seemed to get more and more... Long winded... Why say something in a couple well crafted sentences when you can say it in five times as many? Why you ask? So you don't piss off your readers.....

  8. 5 out of 5

    Christophe Landa

    As with many of his other books, the author does a good job of employing twists that are surprising. The story had me hooked, especially by the conclusion of the first chapter. Very well written but feels cut short. Knowing this is a series, I am not too disappointed :)

  9. 4 out of 5

    Graham Bradley

    Man. Kroese's books are always enjoyable but I got into this one more than his others. Fun character and story. Man. Kroese's books are always enjoyable but I got into this one more than his others. Fun character and story.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Aditya Thakur

    Was interesting in the beginning then gradually it became non interesting to the point that I dropped it at the ending.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Shawn

    I read this way to fast; I had trouble putting it down. Kroese delivers another terrific adventure that keeps the action going. The world building was fun, but I am certain the way I am pronouncing the names in my head it nowhere close to accurate. I loved the surprise twists; I think I know where things are going then... "I'm not a Warlock" Bam! Konrad, especially seemed to have a Princess Bride, vibe to his character and dialogue. I kept picturing Westley as I read his speeches of honor and lo I read this way to fast; I had trouble putting it down. Kroese delivers another terrific adventure that keeps the action going. The world building was fun, but I am certain the way I am pronouncing the names in my head it nowhere close to accurate. I loved the surprise twists; I think I know where things are going then... "I'm not a Warlock" Bam! Konrad, especially seemed to have a Princess Bride, vibe to his character and dialogue. I kept picturing Westley as I read his speeches of honor and logic. Overall, very entertaining with great potential for the rest of the series. Bring on number 2!

  12. 4 out of 5

    Wesley

    A solid book that feels like a good start for a great fantasy series. Konrad is a fun and clever protagonist in a book filled with some fun plot developments. Kroese's writing style is fun with lots of details involved and some decent humor involved. The world building was very well done with lots of hints towards the future and leaving the reader to wanting to know more. The setup for the next few books seems really interesting and a neat way to resolve a major plot point. I look forward to rece A solid book that feels like a good start for a great fantasy series. Konrad is a fun and clever protagonist in a book filled with some fun plot developments. Kroese's writing style is fun with lots of details involved and some decent humor involved. The world building was very well done with lots of hints towards the future and leaving the reader to wanting to know more. The setup for the next few books seems really interesting and a neat way to resolve a major plot point. I look forward to receiving the next book soon.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Robert S.

    Looking forward to the rest of the series! Take a bit of the feel of The Black Company, mix with some tone of Hammer's Slammers, drop into a fantasy setting, all written by the author of The Saga of The Iron Dragon series, and you get The Brand of the Warlock! Thoroughly enjoyed the main character's personality, and witnessing events through their eyes. Plenty of highs and lows, the story moves ever forward, pausing just enough to reset properly before moving to the next point. Looking forward to the rest of the series! Take a bit of the feel of The Black Company, mix with some tone of Hammer's Slammers, drop into a fantasy setting, all written by the author of The Saga of The Iron Dragon series, and you get The Brand of the Warlock! Thoroughly enjoyed the main character's personality, and witnessing events through their eyes. Plenty of highs and lows, the story moves ever forward, pausing just enough to reset properly before moving to the next point.

  14. 4 out of 5

    William Howe

    Overly verbose I tried. 84% of the book before I threw in the towel. It’s really well written. To the point that you want it to get sloppy just to make something happen. One significant flaw: the MC repeatedly says time flows slower in the shadow realm, but then describes it as flowing faster.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Sablehawk

    Excellent book This is the best of Kroese's books so far. It is a bit talky, but I enjoyed the characters very much. The world is interesting and I have hopes that all the characters will return in his next book. Excellent book This is the best of Kroese's books so far. It is a bit talky, but I enjoyed the characters very much. The world is interesting and I have hopes that all the characters will return in his next book.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Mean Mr. Mustard

    Very enjoyable. Old school fantasy with an updated feel, and plot twists galore.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Kevin Siekierski

    Excellent Start I really enjoyed the story and characters. World building could use a little work, but maybe there will be more in the sequels.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Mike Goodman

  19. 4 out of 5

    Ryan McCoin

  20. 4 out of 5

    Alex

  21. 4 out of 5

    Nyssy

  22. 5 out of 5

    Christina

  23. 5 out of 5

    Grant Lambert

  24. 5 out of 5

    Adam Furman

  25. 5 out of 5

    Sarah

  26. 5 out of 5

    Bill Ramsell

  27. 4 out of 5

    Andy

  28. 4 out of 5

    Jerry Johnson

  29. 4 out of 5

    Andrew MacMillan

  30. 5 out of 5

    George Stratton

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