Ki’s husband and children died at the hands of harpys and her life has never been the same since. She cannot let them go. That is, until she meets a man named Vandien, who introduces conflict and companionship into her solitary life at a vivid contrast with her past encounters. On a trip which is reputed to be impossible over the mountains in winter, Ki is forced to confront the demons of her past and the impossible prospect of the future.
Megan Lindholm is another pen name of author Robin Hobb, whose works I absolutely adore. I believe this was written earlier and it certainly feels that way. It’s less epic and less of an intoxicating addiction. That doesn’t mean that it was bad. No, certainly not. This author just loves to torture her characters and Ki doesn’t escape at all. I think it may have hurt the story to have half of it told through flashbacks, but I’m not sure an adventure through snowy mountains would have been all that exciting on its own. It takes away some of the urgency for Ki to already be set in her ways and lonely, though of course we can still feel the heartrending pain of her loss in the writing. I guess what I’m trying to say here, and not saying very well, is that she writes better as Robin Hobb but this is still pretty good and I think I’d recommend it as a decent fantasy. It’s not going to be my favorite book ever, but I’d like to read the rest in the quartet.