A stunning blend of visionary storytelling and majestic prose, The Mark of Ran is a new masterpiece of imaginative fiction. In this epic adventure, Paul Kearney records the voyages of a reluctant hero, a band of outcasts, and a quest into the unknown no one has ever dared before . . .
In a world abandoned by its Creator, an ancient race once existed—one with powers mankind cannot imagine. Some believe they were the last of the angels. Others think they were demons.
Rol Cortishane was raised in a remote fishing village with no idea of his true place in the world. But in his veins runs the blood of this long-forgotten race and he shares their dangerous destiny. Driven from home, accused of witchcraft and black magic, Rol takes refuge in the brooding tower sanctuary of the enigmatic Michal Psellos. There Rol is trained in the assassin’s craft and tutored by the beautiful but troubled Rowen.
It’s no accident that Rol and Rowen have been brought together, but the truth about their past is a secret they will have to fight to discover. Now they’ve set their sights across the sea in search of the Hidden City and an adventure that will make them legends . . . if it doesn’ t kill them first.
Praise for The Mark of Ran
“[A] gritty fantasy swashbuckler . . . Kearney’s crisp, often lyrical writing shines brightest when his characters take to the sea.”—Publishers Weekly
“One of the very best fantasy writers around.”—Steven Erikson
In this gritty fantasy swashbuckler from Kearney (Hawkwood's Voyage), the first in a new series, the inhabitants of Umer, a world forsaken by its creator, live passionately, with no hope of life after death. Legends speak of an elder race, the Weren, whose blood lives on in the mutated Urmen, "shattered travesties of humanity," and in young Rol Cortishane, raised on stories of those ancient days by his grandfather Ardisan. When an angry mob turns on the old man, accusing him of witchcraft, Ardisan urges Rol to sail to the city of Gascar to seek the mysterious Michal Psellos. In Gascar, Rol learns about his Weren heritage, gains a magic scimitar and falls desperately in love with Rowen, an assassin trained by Psellos. Kearney's crisp, often lyrical writing shines brightest when his characters take to the sea. Readers who fancy the creak of ship's timbers and the flash of live steel, the taint of dark magic and the lure of long-buried secrets, will gladly sail away with Kearney's latest novel.
Customer ReviewsSee All
Give it a chance.
Starts out slow, but picks up after the first few chapters; not a generic fantasy clone, but a unique story so far set in a world all its own. Author makes you care about the characters, before killing, harming or ultimately saving them. Ending leaves you hungry for the next.
Excellent read. Fast reading