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SIGNED – Savior (Darkblade #4)


The Hunter is running out of time.
And so is all of humanity…

The demonic Sage finally has the missing piece in his wicked plan—and with it, the power to free mad god Kharna from his prison.

To make matters worse, Hailen’s mysterious and dangerous abilities are dragging him ever deeper into madness. The only way to pull the boy back from the brink of insanity is to unlock the dark, deadly secrets of a city long ago lost to time.

It’s a terrifying race against time and monstrous foes to save Hailen and stop the Sage from unleashing the mad god of death and destruction.

When evil wields power unstoppable, it takes a killer to save the world.


(Each paperback is hand-signed and personalized by me. Swag included!)

SIGNED – Savior (Darkblade #4)

Look Inside

The Hunter could not outrun the storm.

Lightning flashed all around him, so bright it pained his eyes. The very air seemed to sizzle and come alive with the force of the tempest. The storm clouds billowed high above him like an enormous beast of darkness and fury, filling the sky with an endless cacophony of bellowing thunder. It had earned the name the locals whispered in fear: the Shattering Tempest.

The Hunter's eyes fixed on the solitary "island" of stone in the middle of the Whispering Waste. It stood at least half a league away; the black clouds loomed closer with every thundering heartbeat. But he had to reach the shelter of stone before the lightning struck them.
Not for his sake, but for the sake of the small figure riding behind him.

Hailen rode with his head buried in the Hunter's back. The sound of his whimpering was faint, drowned out by the pounding of the horses' hooves.

The Hunter cast a glance over his shoulder. The massive wall of clouds reached dark, smoky fingers toward him, as if seeking to drown him in their boiling, windswept embrace. The Whispering Waste belied its name; the thunder rolling across the vast expanse of emptiness could shatter mountains. Bolts of lightning struck the ground all around, sending shards of the salt-covered earth spraying like a hail of darts. A piercing, shrieking wind set his cloak flapping and tugged at him, as if seeking to drag him from the saddle.

Yet no rain poured from the clouds. The boiling, seething frenzy of the storm seemed hell-bent on punishing any travelers who dared to brave the torturous crossing.

The Hunter bent lower in the saddle and urged Elivast to greater speed. The horse stumbled for a moment before taking off into a full gallop. Elivast was tiring, but the Hunter couldn't slow. If those blazing spears of lightning and hurricane winds caught them in the open, they wouldn't survive. The horses could rest in the shelter of the stones.

The sharp, pungent tang of lightning hung on the air, and the Hunter's heart lurched as a massive crack shattered the ground twenty paces to his right. The echoing thunderclap nearly deafened him. His head rang and the brightness stung his eyes.

The small island of stone drew nearer one heart-rending pace at a time. Elivast's flashing hooves ate up the ground at a gallop, but the Hunter recognized the signs that the horse was on the edge of collapse. Ash, Hailen's stocky desert horse, pounded alongside them, on the verge of panicking. The Hunter couldn't change horses now; he needed Elivast to carry the extra weight of Hailen's little body.

Come on! He gritted his teeth. Just a little farther.

An ear-splitting BOOM echoed from behind him a heartbeat after blinding light split the roiling sky. Shards of salt showered across the Hunter's back with stinging force. The Shattering Tempest had caught them.

The air crackled and sizzled as lightning speared into the ground all around him. A deafening symphony of thunder roared past him, swallowing him in its ear-splitting fury. Howling winds whipped shards of salt through the air with enough force to shred skin.

Elivast screamed, and terror drove him faster. The Hunter could do little more than cling to the saddle and hope Hailen held on as the horse raced to the outcropping of stone in the middle of the sea of white.

Lightning split the air in front of them, barely ten paces away. The concussive blast washed over the Hunter, nearly hurling him from the saddle. His head spun with such force it drowned out the voice shrieking in his mind. Elivast staggered, shocked by the lightning.

"Elivast!" The Hunter's shout sounded so faint through the ringing in his ears. "We're almost there!" He dug his heels into the horse's ribs. Slowly, Elivast tottered forward, stumbling into a full gallop to cross the last forty paces to the small island of stone.

The Hunter, blinking away tears and fighting to see, turned Elivast's head toward the only place that would offer them any shelter from the storm. Four obsidian stones stood in the heart of the island of land that rose from the endless sea of white salt-covered ground of the Whispering Waste. Ten paces tall and three wide, the midnight monoliths leaned inward, providing a pitiful windbreak.

Elivast shied from the stones, but the Hunter pushed him onward. The stench of rot and decay twisted the Hunter's stomach. These were Dolmenrath, the creations of the Serenii, whispered to have been used to summon demons during the War of Gods thousands of years earlier. The stones emanated an almost tangible pall of malevolence.

But he had no choice. These stones offered the only shelter from the lightning, the buffeting winds, and the stinging spray of salt.

He leaped from the saddle, whirled to scoop Hailen up, and dashed the last five paces to the circle of standing stones. Stepping into the circle felt like stepping into mire—no earthly mud, but a thick, suffocating miasma of evil.

The Hunter fought the dread writhing within him and ducked into the shadow of an obelisk. The massive stone blocked the worst of the wind, and the Hunter drew his long, dark cloak across his face to protect himself and Hailen.

The monoliths hummed around him as lightning struck at them with sizzling fingers. An eerie wailing pierced the ring of obsidian stones, stabbing into his ears and setting his head ringing. Hailen’s presence pushed back the voices in his mind, but he could not escape the wailing of the wind. It seemed voices whirled all around him, screeching, shrieking, begging, pleading. He could make out no words but could not escape the chaos.

The Hunter gritted his teeth against the pain. Closing his eyes, he forced himself to take slow, deep breaths.

"Hardwell?" Hailen's whimper, so close to his ear, pierced the raging maelstrom.

"We're alive, Hailen." The Hunter gripped the boy tighter—as much for his own comfort as for Hailen's. "We're alive," he repeated.

"I-I'm scared." Hailen snuffled in his arms. "I don't like the wind. The voices…they're…telling me…"

"Don't listen to them. Just listen to me. The voices aren't real. They're just a trick of the wind."

He spoke the words to comfort Hailen, but he knew the truth. He had heard voices for years—the voice of Soulhunger, the dagger he'd inherited from his demonic father; the voice of the demon living in his mind; the voices of the dead in Voramis. The more he tried to ignore them, the louder and more insistent they grew.

Hailen had inherited his own curse: the Irrsinnon, the madness that gripped all Elivasti. The purple-eyed descendants of the Serenii were fated to insanity unless they took the opia, a fruit that grew in two places on Einan. They had left Shana Laal behind in the wake of the chaos stirred up by the enmity between the Warmaster and Sage; now, they had to reach Enarium, the Lost City of the Serenii, to find the cure for the boy before the madness completely overtook him.

The Hunter pulled the cloak tighter about them. The wind whipped at the cloth, trying to rip it from his grasp. Though his forearms and hands ached, he fought to retain his grip. They had to weather the storm.

Hailen whimpered in his arms, terrified.

"Hailen, did you ever hear the story of Agarre the Giantslayer?"

The boy's sobbing fell silent. After a moment, he replied, "No. Will you tell it to me?"

The Hunter smiled. "Of course. Once upon a time, there was a young girl who lived in a small village. Agarre was her name…"

For what seemed an eternity they sat, boy and man huddling together in the man’s cloak, a pathetic shelter from the storm. The Hunter spoke in a soft, soothing voice, telling the boy the story of Agarre, the heroine that killed the giants in the Empty Mountains. He did it to calm Hailen but found it calmed him as well. So long as he remained fixed on the boy in his arms, he did not think about the storm raging around him.

Gradually, Hailen relaxed, and soon his chest rose and fell in the rhythm of sleep. The Hunter marveled; how could anyone sleep at a time like this? Yet, with his arms wrapped firmly around the boy, he felt an odd sense of peace. Chaos and destruction whirled all about, but, like the island of stone amidst the endless expanse of the Whispering Waste, he had a refuge from his tempestuous life with this little boy.

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Customer Reviews

Based on 6 reviews
So dark, but so good. The legend continues!

CW: mentions of child abuse/assault, violence, gore, some others

Truth be told, I was putting off continuing this series. Not because it’s bad, just because it can be so dark; I needed to decompress a little. So I did, and now here I am. Sometimes you just need to take a break and enjoy something basic and ridiculous. Then you can go back to enjoying the finer things in life, like an author casually ripping your heart out of your chest and putting it back half a dozen times in one book.

The Sage has escaped Kara-Ket, and the Hunter needs to find him before he can release Kharna. But Hailen’s Irrsinnon is worsening, threatening to claim his life with every passing moment, and finding a lost city isn’t exactly an easy thing. As the Hunter scrambles for solutions, he may find that the answers are nothing like he expected.

This is easily my favorite of the series so far. As always, Peloquin has crafted an immersive story perfectly crafted to send you through joy, despair, rage, and grief hand in hand with the MC. This book particularly seemed to scream, “Welcome! Here’s some second-hand cognitive dissonance. Enjoy!” I was fully unprepared for everything that would happen in this one, and I loved every moment of it. Previous Darkblade books have taken me about a week to get through, just because of how heavy everything can be; the moments between the action in the other books made for perfect pauses in my reading. This one took me 3 days. There was absolutely no time for mundane things like sleep because *had* to know what was going to happen next. Add some glorious characters to the breakneck speed of things and real life just had to wait for a bit. 10/10, you need to read.

I immediately want to jump into the next book, but it’s going to have to wait. The author’s suggested reading order shifts us to the Queen of Thieves series, so that’s where I’m going. Per my husband (who is ridiculously smug about being right regarding my enjoyment of these books), I’m going to love this series even more. I’m not sure I’m prepared for him to be right a second time, but Peloquin’s just too good. If (super) dark fantasy is your thing, you’re going to want to read these books ASAP.

Steve Bonczyk
Fantastic series

Wow, as an ending this is very very good. The Hunter seems to come up with the goods whenever required. I hope this isn’t the last we hear of him that’s for sure. If you liked the others you’ll love this. Very highly recommended.

Manie Kilian
Odds against

The odds were firmly stacked against the Hunter ever finding the location of Enarium in time to get help for Hailen, find and defeat the Sage and find the wife and kid that so haunted his dreams..
The odds were almost nil that he would in the end be able to prevent the reawakening of The Destroyer and save mankind from the carnage leading to and during the Withering.
Yes, the odds were impossibly small. And with the death toll rising.
Is success really possible?
Once again author Andy Peloquin crafted an on the edge of your seat thrilling epic fantasy that makes turning the pages the easiest thing in the world.
One person found this helpful

lana turner
The Hunter striving to be a better man!

This book is the grande finale, the culmination of all the Hunter had strove for whilst travelling the length and breadth of Einan, he had finally arrived in Enarium, the lost city of the Serenii but what he found there was not what he was expecting. Enarium was a horror place for humans who were herded in their thousands into the pit by the Elivasti guards and left to rot, some of whom lived down there from birth till death and now Kiara was down there too and she was Hunter's friend. He vowed he would get her out of there and if possible all the other humans too but there where so many other things he needed to do now that he was finally in Enarium. Er'hato Tashat, the blood sun would soon rise, and the withering would commence, he had to stop the Sage and kill him before he managed to harness the power of Enarium's towers to free the Devourer of Worlds. He also needed to help his wife Taiana find their long lost daughter, Jaia and he had to find the opia cure for Halien before the Irrsinnon got him, but first he had to get Halien out of the clutches of the Sage who knew that he was a Melachha and would use his blood to open the rift. This final book gives us the best ending ever, such a satisfying read to what has been an awesome grimdark epic saga, the hunter a character who started of as a cold blooded assassin who sold his services for gold but ended up as a man who saved the vulnerable, and did so with so much honour. Even though this is the final book in this series I hope to read more about this amazing character, a Bucelarii who decided to let his human half overpower his demon half in the life choices he made thus becoming a better man!

OMG! I love the Hunter!

Could there be a more gentle, loving, caring ruthless assassin than the Hunter? What!!!!! you say, contradiction, you say.... well just so you know, it's not! The pain he feels, the loss he experiences are all too real, even with the dagger screaming for blood, he refuses to kill for the sake of killing, he feels the burden of every kill. He refuses to do Soulhunger's bidding, which would bring forth an unprecedented evil. See? A companionate assassin... and such a tortured soul, constantly attempting to keep the voices at bay whilst trying to discover who he really is. Snippets of memory surface but he cannot make sense of them, it keeps eluding him, he knows he has to travel to Enarium, that the answers he needs he'll find there. So starts another perilous journey, together with Hailen, fraught with dangers and obstacles. I've said this previously, there's something about the Hunter that goes beyond tugging at my heartstrings, I want to envelope him in the biggest hug and console him, constantly. He's constantly being hounded and followed by Sir Danna and the Cambionari, no matter how much distance he thinks he between them, they always seem to find him. I loved the introduction of the two guides, one so stoic, the other fun loving, as they traip through the mountains looking for a path to Enarium. Another really interesting character, Evren, who has secrets of his own. Now that's an interesting new character and with a promise of more of him, I'm simply delighted! As the journey continues, the Hunter's situation becomes more and more dire. The guilt he feels, the choices he's made, have him in more agony than ever! He swore he would protect Hailen, he swore he would find his mystery woman yet once he finally gets to Enarium, it all falls apart. I wanted to throw my hands up in despair, my heart pounding dangerously fast, at what the Hunter endures. I breathed a sigh of relief that the Hunter's death count was, for him, relatively low, that is until the final third of the book. True to who and what he is, the body count sure pilled up massively! And the twists! OMG! I was agog! Just when I thought everything was falling into place for the Hunter, Andy pulled the rug from under me! By the end of this book, there's a sliver of hope from the Hunter, which I can't help but be elated. After learning the truth, what his purpose really is, the Hunter's new founded purpose and resolve are simply mouthwatering for more of this amazingly superb series. There is so much more one can say, so many awesome characters, I could go on and on. All that's left for me to say is, READ IT!