Pathfinder Tales: Lord of Runes

***** (based on 12 ratings)
Pathfinder Tales: Lord of Runes
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Some Secrets Should Stay Buried

Count Varian Jeggare and his hellspawn bodyguard Radovan are no strangers to the occult. Yet when Varian is bequeathed a dangerous magical book by an old colleague, the infamous investigators find themselves on the trail of a necromancer bent on becoming the new avatar of an ancient and sinister demigod—one of the legendary runelords. Along with a team of mercenaries and adventurers, the crime-solving duo will need to delve into a secret world of dark magic and the legacy of a lost empire. But in saving the world, will Varian and Radovan lose their souls?

From best-selling author Dave Gross comes a fantastical tale of mystery, monsters, and mayhem set in the award-winning world of the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game.

384-page trade paperback
ISBN-13: 978-0-7653-7451-6

Pathfinder Society Roleplaying Guild Sanctioned Content
Lord of Runes is sanctioned for use in Pathfinder Society Roleplaying Guild.

Download the Chronicle sheet — (395 kb zip/PDF)

Lord of Runes is also available as a digital edition on the following sites:

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

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***** (based on 12 ratings)

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****( )

This might be tied w/ Queen of Thorns for my favorite of the 5 novels. Though maybe it's a 3-way tie w/ Master of Devils, I don't know.

I'm getting worried the author will run out of variations on his titles, though ;-) So far we've had Prince, Master, Queen, King, and Lord.

Anyway, I loved the latest adventures of the dynamic duo, and am happy to see Jeggare finally moving beyond riffle scrolls to something more interesting.

I am just slightly concerned about how the novel ended up. Without spoilers, I'm trying to figure out how future adventures will continue in the same vein, now that the friends are...well, no spoilers. But their relationship has changed in a quite meaningful way by the end.


THE BEST TALES BY THE BEST WRITER!

*****

GOOD:
Book 5 of a series, but can be read on it's own. Incredibly good fantasy tale with very likeable characters and unexpectable twists and turns.
BAD: LESS THAN 25 LEFT! NO BOOK 6 ANNOUNCED YET!
UGLY: -

Get it while you can.


Outstanding!

*****

What an outstanding book! Can I nominate Dave Gross for a major award from somewhere? All of his characters are amazing! I used to have the itch to write some fantasy fiction, but as I marvel at his work here, I realize again that I could never come up with his skill of description, of dialog, of character conceptualization or sheer artistry of prose. I count myself lucky to have the chance to read his stories.

By all means, though, read the four predecessor tales of Count Jeggare and Radovan. This is exemplary work!


How to reach 5 stars ... again!

*****

This is very simple: This is another book full of interesting characters, story depth and to my liking: A strong Golarion historic connection.

I was skeptic at start, because this sounded like a book written by request and with many "bound" subjects - which might have led me to believe that it wasn't a fantastic new story.

I was wrong. This is another fantastic new story of heroes in Golarion.
I'm impressed on how Mr. Dave Gross can keep on making these stories come alive!

I am, BTW using much from this book in my own storyline as sidetrecks in my regular RotR campaign.


Everything, but everything you could want in a Pathfinder Tale!

*****

Lord of Runes is simply marvelous, especially for anyone who fell in love with Varisia, or played or ran any of the first three adventure paths.

Runelord, check! Korvosa and Kaer Maga, check! A certain Pathfinder known to roam the area, check!

Action, Magic, Character struggles and triumphs, check check check! A terrible last joke, check!

Could not put this one down!


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Silver Crusade

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild, Tales Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber

I hope Zulda doesn't get too jealous that Varian is riding another dragon.


Looking forward to this, but, ouch, more than 50% price increase compared to the rest of the Pathfinder Tales novels.

EDIT: Nevermind. I just read James Sutter's comment on another thread that the discount for these is going up so the price will remain about the same.


So frickin' excited!

The Exchange

Does moving Pathfinder Tales to Tor have any impact on the line content-wise?

Will we see new authors, and how much control does Tor have on the content of the books?


I might get this one. I've always loved James Jacobs' Thassilon and reading about one of the Runelord returning or at least some more info on one or all of them is something I always enjoy.

Dark Archive Contributor

1 person marked this as a favorite.

If you like Thassilon, this is definitely the story for you.


Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Legends Subscriber
Rysky wrote:
I hope Zulda doesn't get too jealous that Varian is riding another dragon.

If I were you, Rysky, I wouldn't risk Zuldanavox's wrath by referring to her by a nickname. Better safe than eaten.

Silver Crusade

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild, Tales Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber

But what if I want the sexy scary dragon lady to eat me?


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Looks like I finally got "King Of Chaos" just in time! And is that Varian taking a level of dragonrider on the cover? Awesome. :D


I must PURCHASE!!!!!!!!!!

Managing Editor

4 people marked this as a favorite.
Lord Snow wrote:

Does moving Pathfinder Tales to Tor have any impact on the line content-wise?

Will we see new authors, and how much control does Tor have on the content of the books?

I'm still the editor in charge of running the line and commissioning all the books, so all the content and quality of the stories will be the same as you're used to (or better, as I like to think I get better at my job all the time). Really, the big impact of the Tor transition has to do with business stuff like printing and distribution and finally getting our books on Kindle. You will certainly see some new authors—being partnered with Tor is prestigious, and I'm already starting to get emails from big names looking to play in the sandbox—but that's nothing new, as I've always been committed to assembling the best roster I can. Rest assured that your favorites of our current authors aren't going anywhere. :)


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Modules, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Will this one be written in the same 1st person perspective as Prince of Wolves?


I'd assume so since all the Varrian/Radovan books are written in such a manner as well.

Also I hope you realize this means I have to reread everything from Hell's Pawn again.

Dark Archive Contributor

Jam412 wrote:

Will this one be written in the same 1st person perspective as Prince of Wolves?

Yes, Lord of Runes is in alternating first-person POV. However, unlike Prince of Wolves, this one includes chapter headings ("Radovan" or "Varian") to make it clear from the top who's perspective you're reading. The same is true of Queen of Thorns and King of Chaos.

Dark Archive Contributor

While you don't need to have read any of the previous stories or novels before Lord of Runes, it might be fun to have the others fresh in mind. Wouldn't it be great if there were a Pathfinder Tales Book Club where a lot of readers could do that at the same time and compare notes?

Managing Editor

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Dave Gross wrote:

While you don't need to have read any of the previous stories or novels before Lord of Runes, it might be fun to have the others fresh in mind. Wouldn't it be great if there were a Pathfinder Tales Book Club where a lot of readers could do that at the same time and compare notes?

Ah, but there is! :) They just started The Redemption Engine, and there's still time to get in on it:

Pathfinder Tales Book Club

The Exchange

James Sutter wrote:
Lord Snow wrote:

Does moving Pathfinder Tales to Tor have any impact on the line content-wise?

Will we see new authors, and how much control does Tor have on the content of the books?

I'm still the editor in charge of running the line and commissioning all the books, so all the content and quality of the stories will be the same as you're used to (or better, as I like to think I get better at my job all the time). Really, the big impact of the Tor transition has to do with business stuff like printing and distribution and finally getting our books on Kindle. You will certainly see some new authors—being partnered with Tor is prestigious, and I'm already starting to get emails from big names looking to play in the sandbox—but that's nothing new, as I've always been committed to assembling the best roster I can. Rest assured that your favorites of our current authors aren't going anywhere. :)

Getting access to Redemption Engine on kindle would sure be tasty :D

Liberty's Edge

Other than Kindle, what ebook formats are going to be available?

Will they be DRM-free?

Dark Archive

This needs to be listed under uUpcoming products".

What are the measurements of the new books - how much taller and broader are they?

Is the paper different?


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Modules, Tales Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber

Going by my Year's Best Science Fiction & Fantasy volume, about 6 cm longer and 4 cm wider.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Kajehase uses the metric system against Anglo-Saxons! IT'S SUPER EFFECTIVE! :D


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Modules, Tales Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber

Not as efficient as it used to be.

Sovereign Court

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber

Will the book be the same dimensions (but with larger page count)?

Dark Archive Contributor

Larger dimensions, different page count but same word count.

And go, Kajehase! Metric FTW!

Dark Archive Contributor

2 people marked this as a favorite.

For those interested in re-reading the previous stories before the release of Lord of Runes, I've begun a series of Radovan & the Count Reread blogs that'll give you a little behind-the-scenes of each one. I'm avoiding spoilers, so you can follow them whether or not you've read each story.

If you just want a look at the publication order (which is also my recommended reading order), there's a post for that too.

A post dedicated to each story will pop up every week or two, with a longer gap after a novel so people can re-read in "real time." If you're following me on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, or Goodreads you'll see links pop up there automatically. Otherwise, why not subscribe to my blog? There'll be a newsletter and perhaps a giveaway in May or June.


I've never read this series of books before so I'm wondering how it actually reads. Is it over the top in terms of the high fantasy stuff or is that seen only at certain points? Not much for reading Pathfinder books simply because I prefer Robert E Howard styling low fantasy. Gonna get it cause I love Thassilon either way.

Dark Archive Contributor

The Radovan & the Count stories are far more Howard/Leiber than Tolkien (so much so that the Tor reviewer compares the boys to Fafhrd and the Mouser), although there are some Tolkien elements, mostly in the background, in Queen of Thorns. The magical elements range from barely-there to epic fantasy, usually building toward the climactic final chapters.

A good way to have a free taste is to check out the web fiction. I'd recommend the still-free "A Passage to Absalom" or, for a few bucks, the novella "Husks," which is my love letter to yakuza and samurai films with fantasy and horror thrown in.

Or, since you like Thassilon (and presumably Varisia), you might prefer starting with "The Fencing Master," also still free on the web fiction page. That one features Varian but not Radovan, since it's set decades before they meet.

Of course, I'm biased and perhaps too close to the material to be the best describer. Perhaps some who've read a few of the novels will chime in.


Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Dave Gross wrote:


Of course, I'm biased and perhaps too close to the material to be the best describer. Perhaps some who've read a few of the novels will chime in.

As a reader, I'm happy to co-sign for you. In other words, "What Dave said!"

Managing Editor

For folks wondering about the new size: it's 5 1/2 wide by 8 1/4 tall.

We just got in advanced copies, and if I can speak as a reader rather than the editor for a second, the new size is gorgeous—the font is easier to read, and the maps look awesome!


Just realized I signed up for your newsletter but never received any emails.....and just tried to check my stuff and it said it would send me an email with a password but no email still.

Dark Archive Contributor

havoc xiii wrote:
Just realized I signed up for your newsletter but never received any emails.....and just tried to check my stuff and it said it would send me an email with a password but no email still.

Since I haven't sent a newsletter yet, perhaps that's the trigger the system needs before it will prompt you to create a password. In any event, I'm enlisting some help learning how to manage that part of the site sometime in May. We'll get it sorted.

Liberty's Edge

Radovan and the Count are indeed much more Howard/Leiber than Tolkein. However, there's a dash of Sherlock Holmes thrown in there as well. Varian is much more refined, and there is much more intrigue, than you would expect from Fafhrd and the Grey Mouser.

Dark Archive Contributor

Just got my ARCs, and I must echo James' sentiments. The larger format is wonderful, especially for those of us with failing eyesight. Crystal's maps are fabulous and full of spoilers.

Does anyone avoid looking at the maps until having finished the books? I wonder.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Legends Subscriber

I always look at them first. Though they contain spoilers, they are generally so minor that they lead to moments of, "Oh, so THAT'S what it meant by The Walking Man." I have not felt like looking at the map ruined the book for me.


Thassilon. June can't come soon enough.


Incredibly excited for anothe Dave Gross novel...question though: will the move to TOR affect the ePub purchasing from Paizo? That' how I buy all my Pathfinder Tales (and I have all of them).
Thanks!


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber

So any old friends among the team of mercenaries and adventurers?

I would kinda like to see Kemeili again...though I doubt since she is probably rooted in Kyonin.

Dark Archive Contributor

1 person marked this as a favorite.

A famous Pathfinder Tales character created by another author joins the team in Lord of Runes. Another (in)famous character associated with Count Jeggare makes a substantial appearance, and a character from Winter Witch enjoys a cameo that heralds a new relationship for one of the boys. The rest of the supporting cast are new to the book, but those who know the setting can expect a substantial Easter Egg hunt if not some major revelations.

While none of the supporting cast of Queen of Thorns shows up for this one, one of the important new characters has a few key similarities to an important resident of Kyonin.

And that's enough teasing after a long, fun Marvel Phase One marathon in honor of my wife's birthday. Time to collapse.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber

What only phase one? No endurance. ;)

I was just thinking it would funny if the supporting cast for a future novel would be Azra, Malena, Kemeili, Oparal, and others I might be missing. Watching Radovan juggle and squirm I think would be funny. Well maybe for a short story.

Dark Archive Contributor

John Kretzer wrote:

What only phase one? No endurance. ;)

I was just thinking it would funny if the supporting cast for a future novel would be Azra, Malena, Kemeili, Oparal, and others I might be missing. Watching Radovan juggle and squirm I think would be funny. Well maybe for a short story.

That thought has crossed my mind.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
John Kretzer wrote:


I was just thinking it would funny if the supporting cast for a future novel would be Azra, Malena, Kemeili, Oparal, and others I might be missing. Watching Radovan juggle and squirm I think would be funny. Well maybe for a short story.

There's too much comedy gold. It would have to be a novel.


Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Legends Subscriber
Dave Gross wrote:

Just got my ARCs, and I must echo James' sentiments. The larger format is wonderful, especially for those of us with failing eyesight. Crystal's maps are fabulous and full of spoilers.

Does anyone avoid looking at the maps until having finished the books? I wonder.

Thinking about this more, I realized that I tend to pull up my copy of Inner Sea World Guide when I want to look at a map and "place" what's going on in a book. That way I can read a bit more about the country and other cities.

Though, honestly, I'm often less concerned with the geography than with the characters, and so I don't feel the need to look at the maps much...

Cameo from Winter Witch? Ellasif's little sister? Or Declan's lady love? I can't remember either of their names and I recently discovered that Winter Witch is the ONLY Tales novel of which I didn't buy a digital copy.


Hmmm...bronze scales and a electricity-based breath weapon? Good for you your excellency! You've made the logical step of upgrading from a scheming chromatic green to a majestic metallic bronze! Now if only we can get a Silver or Gold Dragon in a Pathfinder Tales novel. Hell, I'd settle for a Red Dragon (however, if a Chromatic Red ever does make an appearance in Pathfinder tales then it had better be either mythic or DAMN STRONG as Red's are meant to be seen, heard, and FEARED)!


This sounds great! I'm glad to see Paizo finally doing a few novels with tie-ins or "Easter eggs" to their adventures.

Dark Archive Contributor

2 people marked this as a favorite.

If you like Easter Eggs to APs, check out King of Chaos.

And for the reverse, an AP with Easter Eggs for a novel, check out Carrion Crown, which expands on elements from Prince of Wolves.


WHY MUST I WAIT!!!!!! Time machine GGGGOOOOOO!!!!!!.......
........errrrr go!
Go?
Please go?
.....EXPLETIVE DELETED ran out of depleted uranium.......


Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Legends Subscriber

If I'm not mistaken, Dagger of Truth also has a reference to Carrion Crown. I'll know as soon as I finish rereading it.


Dave Gross wrote:

If you like Easter Eggs to APs, check out King of Chaos.

And for the reverse, an AP with Easter Eggs for a novel, check out Carrion Crown, which expands on elements from Prince of Wolves.

Thanks, Dave! King of Chaos is on my to read list as soon as I finish The Redemption Engine!

Dark Archive

Now already in may?
Together with Forge of Ashes?
I know which one i´m gonna read first.
Hint: It rhymes with prunes...

Scarab Sages

Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber

I find it irksome that this book is the first one that we won't have a free digital copy of... The last couple Varian and Radovan books that came out, I read the digital version as soon as it was available, because I didn't want to wait for the print version!

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