Mystic and Rider
by Sharon Shinn
Reviewed by Ruby
The King of Gallengaria has sensed unrest in the southern parts of his kingdom and has sent an envoy to investigate. He has dispatched the very powerful mystic Senneth , two other mystics, as well as two of the King’ Riders in the hopes that they can determine what is the cause of the discord in the southern houses.
It becomes quite obvious early on that the southerners have a distrust of the mystics, more so than in the north. They have actually begun hunting them and killing anyone who has shown any hint of magic. The movement has been spread by Coralinda Gisseltess, a very influential member of one of the most powerful Houses in the south. She has singlehandedly begun the Daughters of the Pale Mother, which is a group of devoted women whose goals are to protect and purify the lands from the mystics. As the envoy continues to ride south, each step they take brings them into even more danger as they continue on in search of answers.
I have to admit that this book was more interesting than anything else I have read in a while. But that might be a bit skewed because it has been a while since I’ve read anything that was good, or that I enjoyed. At least here the characters were likeable. I have been reading so many books where I couldn’t stand any of the main characters, here there were interesting people that you could cheer for even if they were a little flat and two dimensional.
I think that the simplicity of the book might be my only complaint, because as a whole it wasn’t bad, just lacking a certain depth to the story. You just knew going in that everything was going to turn out okay and that even though the two Riders hated the mystics, because they themselves were supposedly racists, you knew they were going to end up friends. There was just a clear definition between who was a good guy and who was a bad guy that there was no surprise or suspense or worry that someone was going to turn on one of the group.
There was just nothing to it. Just a simple read which, considering the books I have picked up lately, wasn’t entirely unwelcomed.