Pathfinder Tales: Skinwalkers

***½( ) (based on 12 ratings)
Pathfinder Tales: Skinwalkers
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The Longships Are Coming!

As a young woman, Jendara left the cold northern isles of the Ironbound Archipelago to find her fortune. Now, many years later, she’s forsaken her buccaneer ways and returned home in search of a simpler life, where she can raise her young son Kran in peace. When a strange clan of shapeshifting raiders pillages her home, however, there’s no choice for Jendara but to take up her axes once again to help the islanders defend all that they hold dear.

From author Wendy N. Wagner comes a new adventure of vikings, lycanthropes, and the ties of motherhood, set in the award-winning world of the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game.

400-page mass market paperback
ISBN–13: 978-1-60125-616-4
ePub ISBN-13: 978-1-60125-617-1

Skinwalkers is also available as a digital edition on the following sites:

Skinwalkers is sanctioned for use in Pathfinder Society Organized Play. Its Chronicle sheet is available as a free download (359 KB zip/PDF).

Note: This product is part of the Pathfinder Tales Subscription.

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Product Reviews (12)
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Average product rating:

***½( ) (based on 12 ratings)

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**( )( )( )

Most exciting book so far


Out of the 4 books I've read so far, this is the most exciting. Skinwalkers is the only book I almost couldn't put down and finished. If you enjoyed the movie 13th Warrior you should enjoy this book, it has many of the same themes. And while that may make it not entirely original, the author does a great job. When I read the acknowledgements and realized this is her first novel I was even more impressed.

The characters are believable and fleshed out. Moreover all the main characters are female, which is nice to see women being portrayed as normal, 3 dimensional people rather than afterthoughts. If you want fiction for a daughter that is not typical romance or girl waiting for the boy to rescue her, then look into this.

The main character is well fleshed out, with an interesting rage problem that is not belittling to her like some angry stereotypes are, but rather seems to be an exploration of what it's like to be a barbarian (the class in Pathfinder, that is).

I am not sure what people's complaints about violence are all about. There is a lot of action in this book, that is true, but the descriptions are not gruesome or gory. Maybe people are disturbed by her anger, or that the author writes about the feelings of the characters as they fight and those feelings are disturbing. I was disturbed reading Nightgalss, but not this book.

Highly recommended. If you love the Norse mythologies, lycanthropes, you should love this.

Great First novel


I really liked this novel. It built suspense well. The characters were interesting. It was not perfect though. Normally I would give it 4 stars but it was her first novel so I rated higher. I can't wait to see more from her.

Let Me Hear Your Warcry!


As others have pointed out, this is quite possibly the most visceral, horrific Tales novel to date (beating out Nightglass and Nightblade in my books), and I loved it. Not just for the fighting, or the violence, but for the simple fact of how this story showcases what people are truly capable of when you piss them off. Especially when said people is a Mother and you endanger the people she cares for.

Highly recommended.

**( )( )( )

Skinwalkers is not the strongest entry in the typically reliable Pathfinder Tales series. A mediocre narrative marries to a heretofore unseen level of violence to produce a brutal, but somewhat flat novel.

Jendara is thrown back into her tumultuous past when a group of strange raiders attack her home and people. Can she solve the mystery behind these attacks and confront her own unhappy past?

This wasn't a bad book, but it was decidedly average. I felt like Wagner was always writing to a plan - but not in a good way - rather, chapters, incidences and twists all felt pre-decided, and that it was simply a matter of getting the characters in position for things to happen. It all felt a little rote to me.

This isn't helped by a dearth of characterisation. Jendara is fleshed out, but virtually no one else gets any flavour; they felt largely interchangeable to me. It doesn't help that, as a character, Jendara is pretty simple. Coupled with the simplistic narrative, I was left with what would have made a fine short story but really groaned under the weight of being a novel.

In addition the setting felt so homogenous - dare I say monotonous. The archipelago itself was boring to me, and unchanging, and the character's never got out of it except for a completely unnecessary diversion to an incongruous pathfinder library that seemed to exist only to pad the length.

Coupled with the grisly violence, which was gratuitous and failed to add anything, I didn't love this book.

If you are after a freezing setting in the pathfinder world, Elaine Cunningham's Winter Witch is a stronger book on all counts.

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