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Review: The Painted Man

By / May 3, 2012 / no comments

The school holidays is when I get a good chance to read books and be captivated in the author’s world. I’m a sucker for a good series and there have been many positive praises for The Painted Man (The Warded Man for US Versions) by Peter V. Brett so I thought I would give it a go myself. I had picked up a copy for 10nzd at a second hand book store.

The story starts by introducing us to Corelings (monsters) that appear through the Earth itself just as the sun begins to set. These monsters destroy everything in their path and eat the flesh of humans. Only specially designed wards that surround a person or village can keep them at bay. However these wards are only protective wards and cannot be used to kill the Corelings who seem to be very resistant to human technology.


Arlen is a 10 year old boy who lives in a small village is the northern region of Thesa. He idolizes his father; he is strong, wise and speaks of good family values. Just after a sunset, Arlen’s mother is racing back to the house being hounded by Corelings. Arlen and his father stand within the safe boundaries of the wards. Arlen looks to his father, who is petrified with fear. A boy’s eyes are beginning to open to see that his father is not a strong man or a man of conviction and that is something no boy should ever have to realize.

Leesha lives in another small village but to the east. She is a simple girl but born to the richest but humblest man in the village, whose wife is the prettiest but lives a life of adultery. Leesha’s mother dislikes Leesha for the fact that she wasn’t born a man and is forever hounding her to get married and produce a grandson. After a Coreling attack on her village Leesha impresses Bruna the village Herbalist. She recruits Leesha and absolves her from any courtships that may happen for 7 years and a day much to Leesha’s mother’s contempt.

Rojer is a jongleur’s apprentice. He is small for his age and is missing a couple of fingers. Was it not for Arrick his master, he would have lost a lot more when Rojer was only an infant. Years later Rojer is sick of living day to day, wiping the vomit off his master’s motley yet cannot compel himself to leave the man who saved his life.

All three characters have a decent role to play in the book and as all books that have multiple main characters, their stories do converge.


There is a lot to like about this book. It has characters that all have a bit of mystery to them. You don’t fully know their role in the book until the book begins to wrap up. It is written well and has a decent pace. I read it in 3 days as it was so good. The Desert Spear is the sequel to the book which I have read an enjoyed and am holding out for The Daylight War which is scheduled for 2013.

Get this book if you like

Multiple main characters

A bit of mystery surrounding the roles characters play in the book

A unique magic system

Fast paced book with not many stoppages


Don’t read this if you don’t like…

Waiting for sequels





Rape scenes, I just can’t handle it

What seems to be an all too powerful character near the end

Every main girl is just so damn beautiful



About the author


Blog editor, admin and founder of BestFantasyBooks.comYou'll find me on the BestFantasyBook forums and spending my spare time reading fantasy books and writing lists for this site. In fact, I have no spare time -- running this site IS my spare time!


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