Pathfinder Tales: Winter Witch

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Pathfinder Tales: Winter Witch
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Fury of the North

In a village of the frozen north, a child is born possessed by a strange and alien spirit, only to be cast out by her tribe and taken in by the mysterious winter witches of Irrisen, a land locked in permanent magical winter. Farther south, a young mapmaker with a penchant for forgery discovers that his sham treasure maps have begun striking gold.

This is the story of Ellasif, a barbarian shield maiden who will stop at nothing to recover her missing sister, and Declan, the ne'er-do-well young spellcaster-turned-forger who wants only to prove himself to the woman he loves. Together they'll face monsters, magic, and the fury of Ellasif's own cold-hearted warriors in their quest to rescue the lost child. Yet when they finally reach the ice-walled city of Whitethrone, where trolls hold court and wolves roam the streets as men, will it be too late to save the girl from the forces of darkness?

From New York Times best seller Elaine Cunningham comes a fantastic new adventure of swords and sorcery, set in the award-winning world of the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game.

300-page mass market paperback
ISBN-13: 978-1-60125-286-9
ePub ISBN-13: 978-1-60125-332-3

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

Winter Witch is sanctioned for use in Pathfinder Society Organized Play. Its Chronicle sheet and additional are a free download (229 KB zip/PDF).

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This product is non-mint. Refunds are not available for non-mint products. The standard version of this product can be found here.

Are there errors or omissions in this product information? Got corrections? Let us know at store@paizo.com.

PZO8501


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RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32

Student of the Way wrote:
Ross Byers wrote:
All ePubs sold through the iBookstore have DRM: the same one the iTunes music store uses. However, ePubs purchased directly from Paizo do not contain DRM: they are watermarked instead.

I just downloaded my first Piazo ebook (Winter Witch) which I pruchased directly from the Paizo website. When I try and upload the EPUB to Stanza on my iPhone, however, I get an error message saying the file contains DRM (hack-spit) and it cannot be read by Stanza.

So, *is* Piazo using DRM on the ePub books purchased from their website? I hope not as I won't be buying any more ebooks if they do. If not, does anyone have a clue what my problem might be?

We are not using any DRM on our ePubs. The only thing I can think of is that you are experiencing some other error preventing Stanza from reading the file properly, which it concludes must be due to DRM.

Contributor

If you haven't yet finished the book, don't read the following spoiler regarding magic in the novels!

Spoiler:

To address the whole question of why people don't cast raise read more in the novels (such as with Liv, in this instance), you have to consider the logistics. Yes, it's possible to bring people back from the dead, but it's extremely difficult because:

1) It's expensive.

2) You have to find someone capable of casting the spell, which is difficult in our generally low-magic world.

3) You have to find that person quickly, as every day that goes by raises the caster level.

In this case, you've got a bunch of folks who, while skilled in their own way, aren't exactly rich. They're also out in the middle of nowhere in enemy territory. They can't go back into Whitethrone and start asking around for the highest-level cleric in town. Even if they think there's someone in one of the big Linnorm Kingdoms cities who can do it, it'd likely be too late by the time they get there (i.e. the required caster level would have become too high--there certainly aren't a bunch of 16th-level clerics hanging around your average town, let alone willing to drop five grand on a charity case). I suspect that nobody in White Rook has ever been brought back from the dead, and while Declan's probably heard about it, I doubt he's ever met anybody who's been the recipient of such a spell.

You will definitely see the raise dead issue come up in future novels, but it has to make sense for the setting and characters. In Golarion, raise dead--like many luxuries in our own world--is generally reserved for rich people in urban environments.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

axegrrl wrote:
Regarding pricing on the book: initially, I was moderately annoyed by the $10 price tag for a paperback that's not that long. However, as long as the price includes digital copy of the book, I'm okay with it. :)

To be clear, only Pathfinder Tales subscribers get the PDF and ePub versions for free when their corresponding print edition ships.

As for pricing, 360-page mass-market paperbacks are pretty commonly priced at $7.99 to $9.99. The ones priced at $7.99 are often new editions of books that debuted as hardcovers, and have thus already proven profitable; others are likely coming from much larger publishing houses than we are, and are able to benefit from higher-volume deals with their printers. Given that this is only our second mass-market paperback ever, we're not able to do that yet. I hope that one day we'll enjoy the kind of print runs that allow us to reduce the price a bit, but I don't feel that we're currently overcharging for it in any way.

Sovereign Court

I reviewed it earlier on today. I liked it OK, although I liked Prince of Wolves a hell of a lot more (which I gave four stars; by that measure, this would be more of a 2.5 but I gave it three because we're limited to integers). Whereas PoW had a bit of a mystery story going on, this was more of a standard quest travelogue, although decently-written.

By the standards of RPG fiction, it's a master-work, but that's a low bar to clear.

Dark Archive Contributor

On the off chance that you are local to Edmonton and haven't yet seen an invitation, please join us for tomorrow's reading of Prince of Wolves and Winter Witch at Indigo South (1837 99 Street Northwest). The readings begin at 2:00 pm, followed by Q&A. After that, it's carousing at Earl's a few blocks south.


Silly question time, are there any winter wolf characters in the book? I'd love to see them get used as something more than monsters one day. Hey they cn talk, they could at least have dialogue, right?

And as I've seen the book hit the local stores, I should be getting my own copy soon. I love Ms. Cunningham's writing and I love her way with Slavic folklore, so this will be great.

Sovereign Court RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32, 2010 Top 8

Eric Hinkle wrote:

Silly question time, are there any winter wolf characters in the book? I'd love to see them get used as something more than monsters one day. Hey they cn talk, they could at least have dialogue, right?

And as I've seen the book hit the local stores, I should be getting my own copy soon. I love Ms. Cunningham's writing and I love her way with Slavic folklore, so this will be great.

A couple talk, and they use complex tactics. I don't think any of them have long monolouges or anything.


Matthew Morris wrote:
Eric Hinkle wrote:

Silly question time, are there any winter wolf characters in the book? I'd love to see them get used as something more than monsters one day. Hey they cn talk, they could at least have dialogue, right?

And as I've seen the book hit the local stores, I should be getting my own copy soon. I love Ms. Cunningham's writing and I love her way with Slavic folklore, so this will be great.

A couple talk, and they use complex tactics. I don't think any of them have long monolouges or anything.

Thanks for the response. Nice to know they at least show up.

And worg monologues? I just re-read Hungry Are The Dead, and it's making kme think of this:

"Alas, poor Thuldrin! I knew him, Lucimar..."


Pathfinder Adventure Subscriber

Only two chapters yet, but I'm perversely amused that this is the second time Elaine's written a book with a norse-like character that shares a name with one of my uncles. (Hrolf [spelled Rolf these days] in Tangled Webs and now Kjell). Two more and she'll have done the lot ;)

The Exchange

Vic Wertz wrote:
axegrrl wrote:
Regarding pricing on the book: initially, I was moderately annoyed by the $10 price tag for a paperback that's not that long. However, as long as the price includes digital copy of the book, I'm okay with it. :)

To be clear, only Pathfinder Tales subscribers get the PDF and ePub versions for free when their corresponding print edition ships.

As for pricing, 360-page mass-market paperbacks are pretty commonly priced at $7.99 to $9.99. The ones priced at $7.99 are often new editions of books that debuted as hardcovers, and have thus already proven profitable; others are likely coming from much larger publishing houses than we are, and are able to benefit from higher-volume deals with their printers. Given that this is only our second mass-market paperback ever, we're not able to do that yet. I hope that one day we'll enjoy the kind of print runs that allow us to reduce the price a bit, but I don't feel that we're currently overcharging for it in any way.

It's worth the ten bucks.


I just finished this and I quite enjoyed it. While I agree that it's not as good as Prince of Wolves, I think it generally warrants better reviews than it seems to be getting. Recommended for any fans of Golarion.

Dark Archive

axegrrl wrote:
Regarding pricing on the book: initially, I was moderately annoyed by the $10 price tag for a paperback that's not that long. However, as long as the price includes digital copy of the book, I'm okay with it. :)

I agree the price is a little high, but that fairly common it seems for small print presses. I mean even the big named publishing companies are 7.99 I have seen some of the smaller ones as high as 12 bucks. Which honestly i think all of it is a bit high for books. Which is why I have switched to epub versions for books, much cheaper.

If paizo offered a epub subscription only I would likely switch to it. But I subscribe instead of just waiting and buying the epub, just as a way to help support paizo honestly. Just like with Baen book they make a lot of books I like. I sometimes pay the much higher ARC (advanced readers copy) price of their books, less cause I have to have it now but as a way to help support them, cause I like them as a company.

err I forget now why I responded to this... ok I am done with my pointless taggent now.. I think.


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Subscriber

ePub help:
I've spent the last hour banging my head against the desk searching on line for how to do this, so hopefully someone here can help me. And no, the Wiki ariticle won't help me as I don't speak code.

How do I take the zip file and turn all those odds and ends back into one nice document to load on my Sony reader? Other ePub books I have are one document, which I can drag and drop quite nicely, but this zip file is starting to feel like one of those cans you open where all the slinkies jump out all over the place.

Thank you.

Grand Lodge

Tiger Lily wrote:

ePub help:

I've spent the last hour banging my head against the desk searching on line for how to do this, so hopefully someone here can help me. And no, the Wiki ariticle won't help me as I don't speak code.

How do I take the zip file and turn all those odds and ends back into one nice document to load on my Sony reader? Other ePub books I have are one document, which I can drag and drop quite nicely, but this zip file is starting to feel like one of those cans you open where all the slinkies jump out all over the place.

Thank you.

have you just tried changing the extension from .zip to .epub?

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

Andrew Betts wrote:
Tiger Lily wrote:

ePub help:

I've spent the last hour banging my head against the desk searching on line for how to do this, so hopefully someone here can help me. And no, the Wiki ariticle won't help me as I don't speak code.

How do I take the zip file and turn all those odds and ends back into one nice document to load on my Sony reader? Other ePub books I have are one document, which I can drag and drop quite nicely, but this zip file is starting to feel like one of those cans you open where all the slinkies jump out all over the place.

Thank you.

have you just tried changing the extension from .zip to .epub?

That's a good suggestion. When you download it from us, you should be getting an epub file, which is really just a special kind of zip file. Your browser or OS may be noticing that it's secretly a zip and renaming it to "help" you, not realizing that's actually a bad thing.

(And you can't just zip it back up, because while an epub is a kind of zip, it's a special kind, and your zipping utility won't recreate it properly.)

Sovereign Court

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure, Lost Omens Subscriber

Deity reference:
p14 Who is 'She Who Watches', the white raven especially as a white raven turns up later?


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Subscriber
Andrew Betts wrote:
have you just tried changing the extension from .zip to .epub?

I've seen that suggestion, but I don't know which file to change. I have a folder that doesn't HAVE an extention (the AltPub one). When I opn the folder, I have two other folders and a file called "mimetype" of a type that my computer doesn't recognize (I have other ePub books on my computer that it DOES recognize, so I'm assuming that's not it). No extention on that file and no option to change / rename it. The META-INF folder has a document named "container", and the OEBPS folder has the slinkies.

Help?

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

Tiger Lily wrote:
Andrew Betts wrote:
have you just tried changing the extension from .zip to .epub?

I've seen that suggestion, but I don't know which file to change. I have a folder that doesn't HAVE an extention (the AltPub one). When I opn the folder, I have two other folders and a file called "mimetype" of a type that my computer doesn't recognize (I have other ePub books on my computer that it DOES recognize, so I'm assuming that's not it). No extention on that file and no option to change / rename it. The META-INF folder has a document named "container", and the OEBPS folder has the slinkies.

Help?

You don't want to touch—or even ever see—any of those files. When you click the download link, you should be getting a file called "pathfinderTalesWinterWitchPDFEPub-Alt.epub". If you're getting "pathfinderTalesWinterWitchPDFEPub-Alt.zip", change it back to .epub.

If you're not seeing a single file at all, and you're only seeing a folder, you need to figure out how to stop your unzipping utility from automatically unzipping the epub file. If this is the case, can you tell us what browser, OS, and unzipping utility you're using?


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Subscriber
Vic Wertz wrote:
If you're not seeing a single file at all, and you're only seeing a folder, you need to figure out how to stop your unzipping utility from automatically unzipping the epub file. If this is the case, can you tell us what browser, OS, and unzipping utility you're using?

After reading this post I went back and started over with a fresh download. We have trouble with our pop-up blocker interfering with the downloads, and there's something my husband was doing to bypass that which was changing the file. This time I was able to do it without changing the format, so I have one pretty little file just like I'm supposed to.

Thank you so much!

Dark Archive

Reviewed as promised and posted the review up on Amazon as well.


I went to my local Barnes and Noble (Worcester, MA) last night to pick up this book. They did not have it in stock, but were willing to order it for me.

I was impressed to see that they had a good number of Pathfinder RPG books and that they were more prominently displayed in the aisle than the WOC books (D&D4ed still had the endcap though). Also they had a BUNCH of the AP's.

Anyway, I'll post a review (here and on Amazon) when I am done reading it (which will be at least another month at my current reading rate).


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Itchy wrote:

I went to my local Barnes and Noble (Worcester, MA) last night to pick up this book. They did not have it in stock, but were willing to order it for me.

I was impressed to see that they had a good number of Pathfinder RPG books and that they were more prominently displayed in the aisle than the WOC books (D&D4ed still had the endcap though). Also they had a BUNCH of the AP's.

Anyway, I'll post a review (here and on Amazon) when I am done reading it (which will be at least another month at my current reading rate).

Excited to see this! I've been working on building up that section in Worcester for a while now. :-)


Joseph Wilson wrote:
Itchy wrote:

I went to my local Barnes and Noble (Worcester, MA) last night to pick up this book. They did not have it in stock, but were willing to order it for me.

I was impressed to see that they had a good number of Pathfinder RPG books and that they were more prominently displayed in the aisle than the WOC books (D&D4ed still had the endcap though). Also they had a BUNCH of the AP's.

Anyway, I'll post a review (here and on Amazon) when I am done reading it (which will be at least another month at my current reading rate).

Excited to see this! I've been working on building up that section in Worcester for a while now. :-)

Joseph Wilson: Building it up, meaning you work there? Or building it up meaning that you order PFRPG stuff there on a regular basis? Isn't there a little gaming/ comic book store in the downtown area that might derive greater benefit from your patronage? Can't, for the life of me, remember it's name though; I'm new to Worcester.

Okay, I finished the book!! I ordered it at B&N and it came in the next day!! Thoroughly enjoyed the story. It was a fun, quick read. My wife has started it and she said that "It feels a little bit too self consciously fantasy. Like they know they are writing in a fanatasy setting and are being a bit too obvious about it." She has only read the prologue, so far. I suspect that it will grow on her. I'll let you know what she thinks at the end. If I can remember to...

Dark Archive Contributor

Itchy wrote:
My wife has started it and she said that "It feels a little bit too self consciously fantasy. Like they know they are writing in a fanatasy setting and are being a bit too obvious about it." She has only read the prologue, so far. I suspect that it will grow on her. I'll let you know what she thinks at the end. If I can remember to...

The prologue has a different tone from the rest of the book, which I liked very much. It's kind of like filming a 15-years-earlier scene in sepia tones before switching to color for the present events.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Itchy wrote:


Joseph Wilson: Building it up, meaning you work there? Or building it up meaning that you order PFRPG stuff there on a regular basis? Isn't there a little gaming/ comic book store in the downtown area that might derive greater benefit from your patronage? Can't, for the life of me, remember it's name though; I'm new to Worcester.

As in I'm a manager there, and so that section is my baby. :-)

And the store you're thinking of is called That's Entertainment.


Joseph Wilson wrote:

As in I'm a manager there, and so that section is my baby. :-)

And the store you're thinking of is called That's Entertainment.

That's Entertainment? I'll have to set off on a quest to find it.

I just picked up Prince of Wolves there on a gift card last night. I wonder if that was you behind the counter...

Once I finish The Worldwound Gambit, I'll start the Jeggare/Radovan series.

I need to get my but in gear and post some reviews...

Contributor

Hi, folks.

If you're interest in fantasy with a Slavic flavor, there's a somewhat more traditional tale posted on my website.

"The Princess and the Psotnik" is influenced by Polish history and folklore, and it's written with a fairy tale flavor.

Hope you enjoy the tale. :)

Best,
ec


Thanks!


Are there any game stats for Declan's map magic anywhere?


I'm more than 40% through _Winter_Witch_ (I just started Chapter 8) and I'm about ready to drop it in disgust. I'm hoping that someone can convince me that it gets better, or that my dislike for the book stems from something that I just don't understand properly.

I was reluctant to write this post, as I'm afraid of offending the book's fans, especially the author herself. (In fact, I'll be speaking badly about one of Cunningham's other books as well.) So for those who don't want to see my rant, I'll spoilerize it. (I know that it's only a token gesture, but... ah well.)

rant:
The prologue of the book was great. Fantastic. When I read that prologue on this site, I was thoroughly hooked. I had always wanted to read about Irrisen, and here we see not only an army of wolves from that fabled kingdom, but the dancing hut of Baba Yaga! I'd never seen such a convincing portrayal of that fabled hut (outside of Mussorgsky's music). Ellasif was a fascinating character, and I was very curious about what was going to become of that subplot with her sister, Liv. Would she turn into something evil? Or a tragically misunderstood figure who would be cast out? Or what? When I heard that the book involved Ellasif traveling to Irrisen (Yay!) to rescue her sister, wild horses couldn't have stopped me from getting this book. So what if I disliked the one other Cunningham book I had read? An idea like this was well worth trying.

Then I started Chapter 1 and... Yipe! Is this the same book?!?

First of all, the main character is NOT Ellasif, but Declan Avari, whom I find not the least bit interesting. Worse, Ellasif is, in the most sinister fashion, manipulating Declan, and anyone else she sees fit to manipulate. And for what purpose? As far as I can tell, it's to deliver Declan to the bad guys as a ransom payment for her sister.

I mean, what the heck?!?

I thought that it was painfully obvious to Ellasif, from the very day of Liv's birth, that the evil forces of Irrisen wanted Liv, and would expend great effort and expense to get their hands on her. Is Ellasif foolish enough to think that Whitethrone would just say "Oh, you brought us Declan? Great, here's your sister back."

And even if they did, would that justify throwing a complete stranger to the dogs? Maybe some people would do such a thing, but I've completely lost any sympathy for that woman.

This book reminds me of why I disliked those Eberron novels so much, back when I read those. The heroes keep so many dark secrets from each other, and from the reader, that I forget why I'm supposed to care about them. Or did I ever know?

Perhaps more to the point, the book reminds me of why I dropped the other Cunningham book I had picked up, _Elfshadow_. I had been trying to get interested in Forgotten Realms, but couldn't figure the setting out. For instance, what's the deal with the Harpers? If they're so secretive, how do we know that they're good? So I read _Elfshadow_, and my questions only heightened, tenfold. Not only were these Harpers secretive, but they were even secretive with EACH OTHER! The two main characters were so busy trying to manipulate each other, they didn't realize that they were really on the SAME SIDE! And if their higher-ups are also so secretive, how do ANY of the Harpers know that they're working toward good ends, anyway? And then later in the book, a whole bunch MORE characters who should have been on the same side secretly work against each other. I got more than 2/3 through that book, before giving it up.

Now, maybe this book will redeem itself in the end. Maybe, for instance, Ellasif won't be as bad as she seems. On the other hand, maybe this book will be more like _Orb_of_Xoriat_, which I finished, against my better judgement, just to find out that the character who seemed to be such a bad guy turned out to be - Shock! Shock! Horror! Horror! - a bad guy.

I don't know how it will end. Even if it ends OK, I'm not sure if I'm willing to sit through the obligatory 100 pages of overland travel - no doubt laced with Ellasif's sinister manipulations - to find out.

<sigh>

Could someone say something in defense of this book? Thank you.

Owner - House of Books and Games LLC

It's been a long while since I read it. I do think the other novels are better, but I didn't ever feel that it was bad.

There are some classic "bad guy errors" in there, especially later, but overall I thought it was okay (I think if I ever write fiction of any length longer than a weekly campaign log, I'm going to make sure I re-read the Evil Overlord List).

I'm afraid I'd have to skim it again to refresh my memory in order give any better of a response.

Grand Lodge

Are you doing anything else with the pathfinder universe?I really liked your FR novels but I have not read anything for FR since 4th edition came out.Incidentally I think elaith would make a great pathfinder villain too.

Grand Lodge

Alright there appears to be something wonky with the ePub, and only this one. I own every single one Paizo offers, including all the compilations and was recently loading them onto my tablet. Everything loaded fine except Winter Witch. It kept giving me errors of it not being valid. Now I would think it was the reader to start with, but every other Paizo ePub loads just fine.

Now I should say, the WW file loads onto the device, but when I try to open it is when I get the error. It loads fine in Calibre on my computer, and even loads fine if I do a conversion from ePub to ePub through Calibre (yeah weird I know) so I'm not sure what's going on, but it's been redownloaded a few times on multiple computer to see if it was a balled up download, but to no avail.

Digital Products Assistant

Andrew Betts wrote:

Alright there appears to be something wonky with the ePub, and only this one. I own every single one Paizo offers, including all the compilations and was recently loading them onto my tablet. Everything loaded fine except Winter Witch. It kept giving me errors of it not being valid. Now I would think it was the reader to start with, but every other Paizo ePub loads just fine.

Now I should say, the WW file loads onto the device, but when I try to open it is when I get the error. It loads fine in Calibre on my computer, and even loads fine if I do a conversion from ePub to ePub through Calibre (yeah weird I know) so I'm not sure what's going on, but it's been redownloaded a few times on multiple computer to see if it was a balled up download, but to no avail.

I've taken a look at the ePub file and it is passing our validation measures. Would it be possible to provide the exact error message and what kind of tablet you're loading it on? This would be helpful to track down the error and troubleshoot.

Grand Lodge

@whoever's in charge of Chronicle Sheets, there's a minor editing mistake on point 3 of "How to Use" - the wrong novel is referenced.

Contributor

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Hi, folks. It has been a while, but I thought I'd share a recent development. German publisher Feder & Schwert is releasing WINTERHEXE, a German translation of Winter Witch, this week. Here's a link to the book's page on the publisher's website.

There's also a French translation available on Amazon.com. Here's that link.

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