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The Fiend and the Forge: Book Three of the Tapestry

Review

The Fiend and the Forge: Book Three of the Tapestry

Much has changed since Max McDaniels was forced to give up the Book of Origins to the demon Astaroth in order to save his beloved homeland Rowan --- and the world. Astaroth has begun to pluck discoveries in technology, medicine and engineering from the past, sending the world back to a pre-industrial state. He has also let his fellow demons run amok with different demon leaders, claiming parts of the world as their own. Humans have been forced into slavery and are at the mercy of these villainous creatures. The only place untouched by all the mayhem is Rowan, and its inhabitants are grateful for the reprieve --- at first.

Rowan returns to its glorious roots and is soon thriving in trade and craftsmanship. The only blemish in an otherwise happy existence is the large and looming demon embassy on its lands. The dark and foreboding building serves as a reminder to Rowan as to who is ultimately in charge. Max and his roommate, the sorcerer David, try and maintain some normalcy, but it soon proves impossible as both of them grow tired of Astaroth's rule. While David hatches a magical scheme to break Astaroth's iron-fist control, Max sets out on a quest of his own --- revenge. Revenge against the demon who killed his father, revenge against the atrocities being committed against humans, and ultimately revenge against Astaroth himself.

Max soon discovers the world has changed drastically. After he stops to help a farming family in need, the demon leader of the area, Prusias, finds Max and offers him a deal. If Max becomes an unbeatable gladiator, then Prusias will offer him the revenge he's been seeking. With no other choice, Max soon enters the ring and begins the perilous life of a gladiator. As the Old Magic continues to seep through his blood and aids with fighting, Max finds himself on the winning end, and Prusias is forced to honor his agreement.

The opportunity to fight Astaroth finally presents itself, and Max is ready. He reunites with David, who has his own scheme brewing, and repairs a broken weapon that has the power to overthrow the mighty demon once and for all. Astaroth, though, has been waiting for such an event to unfold, and any plan Max and David might have had is thrown out as the battle of good versus evil reaches a climactic finish.

THE FIEND AND THE FORGE is the third book in the Tapestry series, and eager fans won't be disappointed. The unique assortments of characters return in some capacity or another, and the storyline advances in a new and exciting direction. Be sure you're familiar with the first and second novels as this one launches right into action, leaving little space to recap the previous two. Henry H. Neff does an excellent job creating a pre-industrial world controlled by demons. The ending is a bit of a shocker, but it nicely sets up the next installment, leaving fans wondering where the series will go next. Max's story is far from over, and the redemption he seeks takes a new and exciting turn.

Reviewed by Benjamin Boche on August 9, 2011

The Fiend and the Forge: Book Three of the Tapestry
by Henry H. Neff

  • Publication Date: August 9, 2011
  • Paperback: 560 pages
  • Publisher: Bluefire
  • ISBN-10: 0375838996
  • ISBN-13: 9780375838996