Friday, 13 May 2011

The Rogue (Traitor Spy Trilogy - Book Two)

The Rogue (The Traitor Spy Trilogy)
Title: The Rogue
Author: Trudi Canavan
Series: Traitor Spy Trilogy
Preceeded By: The Ambassador's Mission
Succeeded By: The Traitor Queen (Due 2012)



Score: 7/10
How likely I am to read the next in the Series: I'd like to...


Trudi Canavan is an exceptional author. I expect that even if the publisher did no marketing for the book at all, it would still become a bestseller.

But like all authors, only one of her books can be the very best, and unfortunately this isn't it. It must be difficult for an author to hear that her latest book wasn't as good as the last, but when previous books include "High Lord", "The Magician's Apprentice" and "Last of the Wilds" it really is an extremely high standard to set.

Many of you will already be acquainted with Trudi Canavan's writing style, but for those who aren't - become so. Anyone not reading her novels is missing out on a lot. It's hard to pinpoint what exactly it is that makes her novels so outstanding, because, generally, everything is done excellently. She's the kind of author where one book isn't enough, you want to read all of them. And for this who haven't read any - the best way is probably in the order she wrote them.

But as I hinted at earlier, this book is not her best. In fact, it's probably the one I enjoyed least. The main reason is that nothing happened. I had assumed that that the titular "Rogue" was the magician thief from the first book - but he's not in it. He's mentioned, and the search for him is mentioned, but he fails to make an appearance.

Then there are the two ambassadors - Dannyl and Lorkin. Now Lorkin's story I quite enjoyed, and he's a pleasant character to read about. But still, I found that it was quite uneventful. Dannyl also had a pretty quiet time doing research, which while interesting in a different way was still just him reading books. For the most part. There are a couple of exciting events which I won't give away, and both ambassadors meet interesting people.

And there is of course Sonea's story. In my review of the first book, I said that Sonea seemed to be too young. I kept thinking of her as she was in the prequel trilogy. In this book, this is happily no longer the case. In this she seems like a reasonably aged mother - which is what she is. She also remains as caring as ever - and there are promising hints on her storyline for the next book.

--Slight Spoiler--

There was one new storyline really, and that was of two girls in the guild. I'm not sure that it was really necessary to the overall storyarc, but it was a enjoyable. At first I felt the female-female relationship was just to balance out the male-male and male-female ones, but as I read more I found that it felt more natural - if a bit underdeveloped.

-- End of Spoiler --

The main reason that this is the book that I enjoyed least of Canavan's is that it doesn't seem to move the story along very far. The most dramatic scenes are in the new character-arc which seems to be pretty much resolved by the end of the book. I did enjoy the book, but I didn't feel that it was the second in a trilogy - more a new book set after the last with the same characters.

For those who like Canavan, I would still recommend it - but be aware it's not her best. I enjoyed it, but it didn't answer any questions - or really raise any either. Hopefully it'll seem more important once the next book is read, and I look forwards to finding out.

More Information

Main Protagonist(s): 2 male, 2 female
Main Antagonist(s): Not really sure...
Main Relationships: Heterosexual, Homesexual (male and female)
Genre: Fantasy
Brief Synopsis:

Living among the Sachakan rebels, Lorkin does his best to learn about them and their unique magic. But the Traitors are reluctant to trade their knowledge for the Healing they so desperately want and, while he assumes they fear revealing their existence to the world, there are hints they have bigger plans. Sonea searches for the rogue, knowing that Cery cannot avoid assassination for ever, but the rogue's influence over the city's underworld is far greater than she feared. His only weakness is the loss of his mother, now locked away in the Lookout. In Sachaka, Dannyl has lost the respect of the Sachakan elite for letting Lorkin join the Traitors. The Ashaki's attention has shifted, instead, to the new Elyne Ambassador, a man Dannyl knows all too well. And in the University, two female novices are about to remind the Guild that sometimes their greatest enemy is found within.  

ISBN: 978-1841495934
Amazon Link: UK | US
Pages: 512
First Published: 5 May 2011
Publisher: Orbit

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