Sunday, 6 November 2011

Fable: The Balverine Order by Peter David

 In a land without heroes, there are two choices: find one, or become one...

The days of magic and myth are fading away, the days of industry and science are coming. As the aged last Hero sits upon the throne of Albion, two friends - the privileged Thomas and his loyal servant, James - set out for the East in search of a legendary beast: the vicious, rarely seen balverine. But their desire for adventure may be their ultimate undoing.

For although the ages of Heroes is ending, dangers still abound in the wilds of Albion. And as they travel, they encounter both unlikely friends and unnerving allies who seek adventure of a different sort. Though Thomas and James seem on the verge of finding their quarry, they may not live to tell the tale. Because their quarry has just found them...

So I was requested to read this book by my friend Amber, who is an absolute Fable fanatic. For those of you who don't know what Fable is, it is basically a current trilogy of xBox games based in a kind of mythical land called Albion, and in each of the games, you take up the role of a Hero and set about trying to save the land from some evil guy. This book isn't a tale of any of the games - it is set around about inbetween Fable II and Fable III, when there are no current Heroes around. I have to say, I am about 50/50 with this book - because on one hand, I absolutely loved it, but on the other hand, I really didn't like it. Firstly, I honestly felt that reading the book was a bit of a drag - I kept waiting for it to pick up and get really exciting and give me an adrenaline rush like the game does - but it didn't, until the last 50 pages or so, which was rather disappointing. But then again, quests on Fable do have their boring bits, and those last 50 pages were stupidly good - I literally could not put the book down. I also loved both the developments of the main characters, Thomas and James - you honestly felt like you personally knew them, and were under their skin for the whole time. I also loved the plot twists that were put in, and how the mysteries were not at all obvious, and when you worked out certain parts, you felt like slapping yourself in the face for not realizing before. So, all-in-all, I'm really glad I read it, despite the boring bits, and I would definately recommend this novel to any Fable fan out there.

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