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Danse Macabre

DrDeth's page

4,814 posts. 18 reviews. No lists. 1 wishlist.



1 to 5 of 18 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | next > last >>

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Great fluff, but almost no crunch

***( )( )

This book has a great deal of background info on Humans in the Pathfinder world of Golarion. The history and sociological info is well written and expensive. The only issue I have is with the map- they have a nice map of migrations, but the history section repeatedly mentions various regions and kingdoms- but altho the map contains said areas, they are no labeled. A rather puzzling omission.

The rather small amount of crunch is provided with a small but choice list of humano-centric spells. There’s also quite a bit of background info on various human regional weapons, but as they seemingly forgot the chart, you’d have to check back into various other sourcebooks to make it work.

There’s also a nice section about Aroden.


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Sylvan secrets

****( )

Here's part of what I said when I reviewed "King of Chaos": About page 33 of the new Dave Gross Novel "King of Chaos" I realized it was part of a series. About page 44 I went ahead and ordered the other three books in the series, but since I was already hooked, I kept reading....

I like reading fantasy novels, sometimes including those set in a gaming universe. The problem with those is sometimes the authors are third tier , hired to crank out some hack books just to support the game side. Not so with Pathfinder Tales. James Sutter, the Editor, has taken great care to get some solid authors for his line of Pathfinder Tales fiction.

Now, sometimes the authors come out with a fantasy tale, which other than the setting, is not particularly `set" in that gaming universe. The characters don't have "classes', don't use a lot of easily recognizable spells, and magic items are few and far between, unless they are a macguffin. This works as it gets in readers who don't play that particular fantasy roleplaying game.

But as one of my friends was complaining, they don't read as if they are set in one of those High Fantasy High Magic universes. I mean sure- the locations are there, but where's the magic?

Well, this one does. There are scads of spells being tossed around here, not to mention magic items. Characters use scrolls, quaff healing potions, and fire spells which are clearly from the pages of the Player Handbook. Most of the characters (other than those with a mysterious secret background, of course!) are clearly identifiable as to their class, and those who track the spells, etc used can even get a fair guess as to level. Summoners summon their eidolons, wizards burn thru scrolls like it's my Friday nite game, Paladins lay on hands, etc.

This is cool, fun & refreshing. And the combats! Ah here, Dave Gross excels! Our heroes are fighting a literal legion of demons from the depths, not to mention a despicable Undead Lord, who is definitely not sexy or sparkly. "

So, after ordering the prior three books, of course I am now reading them and finding them just as enjoyable as I thought. I have just finished with the last (which is the next to last as I read the 4th book first- confused yet?): “Queen of Thorns” whereupon our brave team of Pathfinder Investigators delves (too) deeply into Sylvan secrets, including some interesting enigmas and mysteries of both Count Varian Jeggare and his hellspawn bodyguard Radovan.

I have talked about the great actions sequences and combat scenes Dave is known for. I forgot to mention the banter, which is filled with little digs, humor and double entendre. What’s also cool is that now that I have read this far, I really feel like I really know these two characters and am invested in and care for them. It’s hard to write fantasy where you get so involved with the characters. These guys are all too human…even if technically they’re only half-human.

Besides Varian and Radovan we also get more about their faithful hound and are introduced to a paladin , a uncanny gnome, a ranger, not to mention someone interesting from the Count’s mysterious past.

A real page turner, fun and with plenty of action.


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Jeggare & Radovan go "wu-shu"

*****

Here's part of what I said when I reviewed "King of Chaos": About page 33 of the new Dave Gross Novel "King of Chaos" I realized it was part of a series. About page 44 I went ahead and ordered the other three books in the series, but since I was already hooked, I kept reading....

I like reading fantasy novels, sometimes including those set in a gaming universe. The problem with those is sometimes the authors are third tier , hired to crank out some hack books just to support the game side. Not so with Pathfinder Tales. James Sutter, the Editor, has taken great care to get some solid authors for his line of Pathfinder Tales fiction.

Now, sometimes the authors come out with a fantasy tale, which other than the setting, is not particularly `set" in that gaming universe. The characters don't have "classes', don't use a lot of easily recognizable spells, and magic items are few and far between, unless they are a macguffin. This works as it gets in readers who don't play that particular fantasy roleplaying game.

But as one of my friends was complaining, they don't read as if they are set in one of those High Fantasy High Magic universes. I mean sure- the locations are there, but where's the magic?

Well, this one does. There are scads of spells being tossed around here, not to mention magic items. Characters use scrolls, quaff healing potions, and fire spells which are clearly from the pages of the Player Handbook. Most of the characters (other than those with a mysterious secret background, of course!) are clearly identifiable as to their class, and those who track the spells, etc used can even get a fair guess as to level. Summoners summon their eidolons, wizards burn thru scrolls like it's my Friday nite game, Paladins lay on hands, etc.

This is cool, fun & refreshing. And the combats! Ah here, Dave Gross excels! "

So, after ordering the prior three books, of course I am now reading them and finding them just as enjoyable as I thought. Here in "Master of Devils" we continue the fantastic adventures of the enigmatic Pathfinder Count Varian Jeggare and his strange & uncanny assistant Radovan.

Again early on Jeggare & Radovan are separated, but this time they spend most of the book apart, along with their faithful hound Arnisant . All three are thrust into a path of personal growth, training and adventure in what passes for ancient China in Golarion.

Be prepared for some fabulous “wu-shu” action and combat, straight out of the most fantastic and martial arts heavy Chinese cinema. Think “Crouching Tiger/ Hidden Dragon” meets “Big Trouble in Little China” with a dash of a few of your favorite fantasy movies thrown in.

Radovan is trapped in his devil form, Venture-Captain Jeggare is trapped training in a Monastery and our faithful hound is out raising an army of phantasmagorical Oni and other creatures to rescue them.

Ghosts, devils, demi-gods, wizards, celestial dragons, oriental goblins, and a host of other populate the action packed pages.


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Start of a great series!

*****

Here’s part of what I said when I reviewed “King of Chaos”: About page 33 of the new Dave Gross Novel "King of Chaos" I realized it was part of a series. About page 44 I went ahead and ordered the other three books in the series, but since I was already hooked, I kept reading....

I like reading fantasy novels, sometimes including those set in a gaming universe. The problem with those is sometimes the authors are third tier , hired to crank out some hack books just to support the game side. Not so with Pathfinder Tales. James Sutter, the Editor, has taken great care to get some solid authors for his line of Pathfinder Tales fiction.

Now, sometimes the authors come out with a fantasy tale, which other than the setting, is not particularly ‘set” in that gaming universe. The characters don’t have “classes’, don’t use a lot of easily recognizable spells, and magic items are few and far between, unless they are a macguffin. This works as it gets in readers who don’t play that particular fantasy roleplaying game.

But as one of my friends was complaining, they don’t read as if they are set in one of those High Fantasy High Magic universes. I mean sure- the locations are there, but where’s the magic?

Well, this one does. There are scads of spells being tossed around here, not to mention magic items. Characters use scrolls, quaff healing potions, and fire spells which are clearly from the pages of the Player Handbook. Most of the characters (other than those with a mysterious secret background, of course!) are clearly identifiable as to their class, and those who track the spells, etc used can even get a fair guess as to level. Summoners summon their eidolons, wizards burn thru scrolls like it’s my Friday nite game, Paladins lay on hands, etc.

This is cool, fun & refreshing. And the combats! Ah here, Dave Gross excels! Our heroes are fighting a literal legion of demons from the depths, not to mention a despicable Undead Lord, who is definitely not sexy or sparkly. “

So, after ordering the prior thrrr books, of course I am now reading them and finding them just as enjoyable as I though. Here in “Price of Wolves” we are introduced to the enigmatic Pathfinder Count Varian Jeggare and his strange & uncanny assistant Radovan.

Prince of Wolves has quitea few rather dark and horrific parts, with some chapters downright creeptastic. But the witty banter keeps the series from being too dark and depressing. Dave Gross here also showcases his talent for using words like a master painter uses a brush to show us the scenes and characters. There is also a fascinating mystery here.

This series is aimed at more mature readers. Mind you, there’s nothing that is even “R” rated but the double entendres, drinking etc shows that this series is not for little kids.

Oh and one note, while this is a series, each book comes to a definite end. Altho you will want to read the next, you are not kept hanging. I like that.

Still- I can’t wait to start reading “Master of Devils”!


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Most magical action yet!

*****

Most magical action yet!

About page 33 of the new Dave Gross Novel "King of Chaos" I realized it was part of a series. About page 44 I went ahead and ordered the other three books in the series, but since I was already hooked, I kept reading....

I like reading fantasy novels, sometimes including those set in a gaming universe. The problem with those is sometimes the authors are third tier , hired to crank out some hack books just to support the game side. Not so with Pathfinder Tales. James Sutter, the Editor, has taken great care to get some solid authors for his line of Pathfinder Tales fiction.

Now, sometimes the authors come out with a fantasy tale, which other than the setting, is not particularly ‘set” in that gaming universe. The characters don’t have “classes’, don’t use a lot of easily recognizable spells, and magic items are few and far between, unless they are a macguffin. This works as it gets in readers who don’t play that particular fantasy roleplaying game.

But as one of my friends was complaining, they don’t read as if they are set in one of those High Fantasy High Magic universes. I mean sure- the locations are there, but where’s the magic?

Well, this one does. There are scads of spells being tossed around here, not to mention magic items. Characters use scrolls, quaff healing potions, and fire spells which are clearly from the pages of the Player Handbook. Most of the characters (other than those with a mysterious secret background, of course!) are clearly identifiable as to their class, and those who track the spells, etc used can even get a fair guess as to level. Summoners summon their eidolons, wizards burn thru scrolls like it’s my Friday nite game, Paladins lay on hands, etc.

This is cool, fun & refreshing. And the combats! Ah here, Dave Gross excels! Our heroes are fighting a literal legion of demons from the depths, not to mention a despicable Undead Lord, who is definitely not sexy or sparkly.

In general, I am not fond of those books where the narrative shifts from character to character, but Dave handles that pretty well too, since the narrative stays with one of the three main Characters each chapter, and each is clearly labeled. I’ll also mention that our three main characters are well thought out with fascinating backgrounds and raison d'être .

Now yes, I imagine that those who don’t play Pathfinder or D&D might be a little lost (however there’s a complete glossary at the back) but those who do will love this book!


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