The Conqueror’s Shadow

"The Credits: Sole author.

Cover art by Larry Rostant.

Sample: Read the first fifty pages, absolutely free, at Suvudu (the Random House blog site): Click here!

Notes: The Conqueror’s Shadow is my first published novel that is not part of a pre-existing shared-world property.

While this book does have a sequel forthcoming, entitled The Warlord’s Legacy, The Conqueror’s Shadow was written so that it can stand alone.

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You can click here to read an excerpt of The Conqueror’s Shadow, consisting of the majority of Chapter Six, on the Flames Rising web site.

They called him the Terror of the East. His past shrouded in mystery, his identity hidden beneath a suit of enchanted black armor and a skull-like helm, Corvis Rebaine carved a bloody path through Imphallion, aided by Davro, a savage ogre, and Seilloah, a witch with a taste for human flesh. No shield or weapon could stop his demon-forged axe. And no magic could match the spells of his demon slave, Khanda.Yet just when ultimate victory was in his grasp, Rebaine faltered. His plans of conquest, born from a desire to see Imphallion governed with firmness and honesty, shattered. Amid the chaos of a collapsing army, Rebaine vanished, taking only a single hostage—the young noblewoman Tyannon—to guarantee his escape.

Seventeen years later, Rebaine and Tyannon are married, living in obscurity and raising their children, a daughter and a son. Rebaine has put his past behind him, given up his dreams of conquest. Not even news of Audriss—an upstart warlord following Rebaine’s old path of conquest—can stir the retired warrior to action.

Until his daughter is assaulted by Audriss’s goons.

Now, to rescue the country he once tried to conquer, Rebaine once more dons the armor of the Terror of the East and seeks out his former allies. But Davro has become a peaceful farmer. Seilloah has no wish to leave her haunted forest home. And Khanda . . . well, to describe his feelings for his former master as undying hatred would be an understatement.

But even if Rebaine can convince his onetime comrades to join him, he faces a greater challenge: Does he dare to reawaken the part of him that gloried in cruelty, blood, and destruction? With the safety of his family at stake, can he dare not to?

"The Conqueror’s Shadow is a powerful fantasy, with well drawn heroes and delightfully wicked, yet complicated, villains. Ari Marmell has made his mark in the genre." –Paul S. Kemp, author of The Erevis Cale Trilogy

"The Conqueror’s Shadow offers readers a tale that begins where most stories end and features a most unlikely protagonist.  Twists of humor leaven this story of desperate people in dangerous times, as a conqueror discovers that perhaps those who live by the sword are sometimes doomed to face the business end of one.  A great mix of character and action." –Robin Hobb, author of Dragon Keeper

"It’s not often that a fantasy starts off with the victorious conqueror of a city and a land almost immediately and deliberately vanishing at the height of his victory—but that’s exactly what happens with From that decision flows a plot jammed with action, repercussions, a tender love story, and a most humorously intriguing conclusion." –L. E. Modesitt, Jr., author of the Saga of Recluce

"Superior storytelling and deft dialog make this a top-notch choice." –Library Journal

"Ari Marmell has a remarkable flair for the sinister." –Scott Lynch, author of The Lies of Locke Lamora