Hidden Warrior

Posted by : atcampbell | On : July 6, 2004

Hidden Warrior by Lynn Flewelling

Of the ten people who showed up for this discussion of the second book in the Tamir Trilogy, seven had read the book and one still had to finish it. Seven people had read Flewelling’s work previously, and seven (not all the same seven) had read the previous volume, The Bone Doll’s Twin.

In the second book, Tobin, the second heir to the throne of Skala, now knows that he (Flewelling uses male pronouns for Tobin until nearly the end of the book) is really a girl and was given his twin brother’s shape by dark magic. Throughout this book Tobin trains as a warrior and deals with the problems of coming of age as a girl in a boy’s body. He must keep his true identity secret from the king who would kill him, even though only a warrior queen can save Skala from the plague, famine, and war threatening to destroy the country.

Everyone enjoyed the book, finding it a fast, well-crafted read. However, a few people were disappointed that this volume was more of a standard fantasy and did not have the dark, edginess of the first book. Flewelling’s characters, even the villainous wizard and king, have a mixture of flaws and virtues that make them realistic, although some readers thought Tobin was too good and needed to be a darker character.

Although this is the middle book of a trilogy, it has enough back story (well interwoven), critical events, and a strong climax to allow it stand well on its own and certainly not be skipped over. It also has enough dangling ends to hook us into reading the next book.

–Sandy Kayser