Vanity’s Brood (House of Serpents #3 Final) (Forgotten Realms)

coverThis review is written with a GPL 3.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at Bookstooge.booklikes.blogspot.wordpress.leafmarks.tumblr.com by express permission of this reviewer.

Title: Vanity’s Brood

Series: House of Serpents #3, Forgotten Realms

Author: Lisa Smedman

Rating: 3 of 5 Stars

Genre: Fantasy

Pages: 320

 

Synopsis:

Arvin must rescue Karell before she gives birth. At the same time, he must prevent Sybil from freeing the Serpent God and becoming its Avatar.

 

My Thoughts:

The maundering end to this trilogy.

Arvin pretends to not know which way he wants to react for most of the book and the reader is expected to go along and then act surprised when he makes it.

The romantic angle between Arvin and Karell is milked for all it is possibly worth. Arvin’s heritage is revealed and that makes everything ok between him and Karell.

Glad I read this, but definitely not worth buying the hardcovers, unlike some of Smedman’s other Forgotten Realms works.

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Viper’s Kiss (House of Serpents #2) (Forgotten Realms)

6f776303bb42ed06a973fd18e746eea4 This review is written with a GPL 3.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at Bookstooge.booklikes.blogspot.wordpress.leafmarks.tumblr.com by express permission of this reviewer.

Title: Viper’s Kiss

Series: House of Serpents #2, Forgotten Realms

Author: Lisa Smedman

Rating: 3 of 5 Stars

Genre: Fantasy

Pages: 324

 

Synopsis:

Arvin skips town to avoid the guild and to get rich quick off a Baron who has a kidnapped daughter. Of course, everything leads back to Sybil the goddess wannabe and the mindmage who once tried to control Arvin.

Arvin meets a stunningly beautiful half-Yuanti and teams up with her to take down the kidnappers, rescue the girl and to foil Sybil.

 

My Thoughts:

Pretty average fare. Lots of action and intrigue and some kinkiness thrown in as Smedman skirts the whole human/yuanti mating thing.

Arvin is still a stupid ass but since I wasn’t expecting him to have changed from the previous book, Venom’s Taste, it was easy to go with the flow. However, him sending his own lover and mother of his future children into hell, by accident no less, was not something I saw coming. I actually just laughed it was so ridiculous.

This book confirms that I enjoy most of Smedman’s Forgotten Realms writings and that when I see her name on a book I will most likely enjoy it. I like having that kind of knowledge.

Venom’s Taste (House of Serpents #1) (Forgotten Realms)

29cc1b8322bc03560012a7bc26f8f3c2 This review is written with a GPL 3.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at Bookstooge.booklikes.blogspot.wordpress.leafmarks.com by express permission of this reviewer.

Title: Venom’s Taste

Series: House of Serpents #1, Forgotten Realms

Author: Lisa Smedman

Rating: 3 of 5 Stars

Genre: Fantasy

 

Synopsis:

Arvin, human rogue working for the Thieves Guild, is caught up in a plot between a cult of Death and Poison, a resistance group that wants to re-assert human supremacy and a Yuan-ti [snake masters of the region] who wants to shake up the current crop of leaders and take their place.

 

My Thoughts:

I went in to this hoping for something a bit “more”, as it was dealing with the Yuan-ti, a race of snake’y people. And while I got “different”, it wasn’t really “more”.

Arvin was your typical cardboard cutout of a human character who had “past” issues that helped and hindered him. All the groups were pretty typical of what you’d expect from a Forgotten Realms novel and the plot was unexceptionally FR as well.

I did like having a completely new race to find out about, but they barely made it into the story. We find out the Yuan-ti rule, can be snakelike in various ways, can be “psionic” [ie, direct mind magic without rituals or scrolls, etc. To be honest, I’m not really sure how it is different from regular magic] and ruthlessly rule, just like every  other class that rules all across the world.

I did read a tiny bit about Skullport, which I am familiar with through the Erevis Cale books, but that was the only familiar thing. Everything else was completely new. Geography-wise I wonder if the Powers that Be from Wizards of the Coast have mapped out Faerun [the whole world, as I understand it] or if they just let things kind of exist willy nilly.

I’ll definitely be reading the rest of the trilogy, but I won’t be expecting anything great, just the typical FR adventure story.