Bruce Cordell‘s sequal to Sword of the Gods released on June 5th and those of us who already knew about Demascus, the deva and erstwhile Sword of the Gods, rejoiced and those who didn’t already know about Demascus hopefully found out and bought both books. The Forgotten Realms is full of iconic characters, personalities that help define Toril and Dungeons and Dragons in general. Names like Elminster, Drizzt Do’Urden and Erevis Cale evoke excitement in readers and help to define the way we think about The Realms in general. With the introduction of Demascus in Sword of the Gods it looked as though we were being introduced to the newest star of the Realms. Spinner of Lies securely confirms that Demascus is indeed a force to be reckoned with while pulling the reader along on an adventure as twisted and sticky as the Demonweb Pits.
For those unfamiliar with this book series Demascus is a Deva, a semi-divine being that is reincarnated each time he dies. Every time he dies the Deva returns in a new full-grown body identical to the previous one. The amount of time it takes to reform and return to the land of the living varies but normally the Deva has only vague recollections of his previous life. Demascus is, or was, unique among Devas in that he had a magical artifact that recorded each of his lives and allowed his next self to remember all of his experiences and maintain the skills he gained in each of his previous incarnations. In Sword of the Gods and Spinner of Lies he has (temporarily?) been deprived of this powerful item called the Whorl of Ioun.
Spinner of Lies picks up right where the first Sword of the Gods books left off, with Demascus settling in to his new life in the city of Airspur, the capital city of Akanul. Akanul is a land dominated by Genasi, elemental humanoids that each take on aspects of and have the ability to control a certain element. Airspur is populated mainly by WindSoul Genasi who have an affinity towards air and wind. One of Demascus’s two main friends, Riltana, is a WindSoul Genasi. Chant Morven, a pawn broker and dealer in secrets returns as well in Spinner.
This time around the city calls upon Demascus to find out why a mine on a small island has stopped sending back ore and why emissaries from the Queen sent to check on the situation have not returned. What sounds like a straight forward mission does not turn out that way at all. What ensues is a whirlwind of investigation, intrigue, vampires and of course Drow! As we see everywhere on the Wizards website these days, the Drow are definitely rising and Spinner of Lies is no exception. I don’t want to put any spoilers on this review so I won’t give any more details on the actual plot of the book but I will say that fans of the Abolethic Sovereignty are in for a treat when Captain Thoster shows up in this book. I was very excited to see his character crop up and I hope he’ll play an even bigger role in the next book. Hopefully Demascus will need to take an ocean voyage for something in his next adventure.
In summary I would say that anyone with a love of great characters, fantasy, Drow or just plain good books should check this one out. I for one hope to see Demascus back in a new book as soon as possible.