Series: Tales of the Kin #1
on April 5th 2011
Genres: Epic, Fantasy
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View our feature on Douglas Hulick's Among Thieves.Drothe has been a member of the Kin for years, rubbing elbows with thieves and murderers in the employ of a crime lord while smuggling relics on the side. But when an ancient book falls into his hands, Drothe finds himself in possession of a relic capable of bringing down emperors-a relic everyone in the underworld would kill to obtain.
So much fun. I was looking for a light, fun read, and this book delivered along with so much more than I was expecting.
It’s basically about Drothe, a Nose (information gatherer) for a crime boss, who in his attempt to get a relic ends up entangled in business that’s way above his pay grade, and ultimately puts him in the middle of a power struggle.
What I found so interesting about this book was how detailed Hulick got with the Kin (criminal organizations). He threw out a bunch of terms I wasn’t familiar with, but he did so with such talent that I had no trouble following along. The world is interesting enough for me. We got an emperor and some organizations that are loyal to him, as well as some that you’re not sure where they fall. Then you have all the intricacies of a crime world woven in. It’s insanely fun. Drothe isn’t a thief, which is what I went into this book thinking. However, I wasn’t disappointed. It has a bit of rebellion that I like in my thief books, just done differently. While we never stepped foot outside the city, inside gave us new worlds based simply on the neighborhood you visited. It fulfilled that little questing in me, meaning the scenery wasn’t the same throughout. Loved that.
Now, Drothe is a fantastic character. He’s got morals for a criminal, but not the ones you’d think. He’ll torture or kill you, but he keeps his word and is loyal. It makes him incredibly likable. He also has a great friendship with Bronze Degan (the muscle), who I thought wasn’t as developed, but was a great sidekick. Their banter is great and the ease of their friendship believable. There’s some hints about some not so fun stuff Drothe has been through, and I get the feeling a lot more will be explored in later books.
The writing is excellent. It’s got some incredible fight scenes that were easy to follow, and I love the pacing. I’m actually surprised this doesn’t have more attention. Although it wasn’t some crazy, complicated, a hundred character monster, it was highly entertaining, fast, and the plot clever but not overly cumbersome. I really enjoyed it.
So with me loving this series, I was devastated to learn that book 3 is not published, and by the information I can find, it never will be. I had already bought the second one, and now I’m not sure I can read it without knowing if they’ll be too much left unanswered. Such a shame, because this really was delightful.
So overall, I highly recommend this book to anyone that enjoys fantasy. I can say it wraps up well enough that one could read this and be marginally satisfied. But be warned that there are a few threads left open.