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(The Paladin Trilogy #1)

3.96  ·  Rating details ·  691 ratings  ·  63 reviews
For generations, warlords fought bitterly for dominance in a land without a king, leaving a fractured, war-torn country plagued by thieves, slavers, and the servants of dark gods and darker magic. Allystaire Coldbourne travels a treacherous path toward his Ordination as a holy knight of legend, a Paladin, a savior of the people. But to fulfill this role, he—and the unexpec ...more
Paperback, 440 pages
Published June 1st 2016 by Santa Fe Writer's Project (first published May 1st 2016)
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Magnús Friðriksson I see this question covered cursing, sex, drug use, and whatever ext. is supposed to mean, but failed to ask if there was any graphic descriptions of …moreI see this question covered cursing, sex, drug use, and whatever ext. is supposed to mean, but failed to ask if there was any graphic descriptions of "Does anyone get their teeth and jaw smashed in with an overgrown Warhammer just before said Warhammer deals a crunching blow atop the head that splatters pulped brain material all over the place?" (less)

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Average rating 3.96  · 
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Mike (the Paladin)
Nov 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing
You may have noticed my screen name??? That may tell you that the "Paladin" is one of my favorite fantasy characters. I began playing D&D in 1978 (yes I'm card carrying "proto-nerd"). I'd always loved fantasy lit. Even in the army when I was in places that reading matter was as valuable as gold and mostly I saw westerns and action adventure I got fantasy when I could (and passed it along as everyone did books. I wonder sometimes if I created some fantasy fans among people who'd never have picked ...more
Jan 02, 2017 rated it really liked it
Fantasy is a lot more difficult to write these days because we want heroes who are recognisably human with human flaws, but who have more than normal strengths. Once Sir Allystaire meets up with Mol and finds himself tracking down her family he seems able to focus his great strength and skill in ways he hasn't before and once he is dedicated to the Mother he has very little difficulty in determining what is the right thing to do and more importantly how far is far enough to go. He is able to hol ...more
Christopher Derr

The paladin has always been my favorite archetype. There are very few books focusing on the holy knight and only a few stand out: The Deeds of Paksenarrion, Paladin of Souls, Miserere. And now Ordination. Great writing style, excellent flow, good mix of description and dialogue, excellent characters and witty dialogue. Allystaire embodies the traditional paladin: forthright, straight forward, his actions based on faith. Well done and thank you for a great read.
Apr 07, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I won this ARC through the Goodreads Giveaways.

I have one major complaint, and it's probably going to sound petty but - the way the goddess is depicted on the cover, she's an outline of a woman filled with a glowing light. Which looks exactly like a naked woman. I'm not generally a fan of women being depicted like that on covers, and! bonus fun! I had to keep the cover hidden on public transit.

That out of the way, I really enjoyed this book. It's a clear member of the medieval knights & quests g
Jul 17, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Straightforward classic epic fantasy. Well-written if a bit familiar. I almost docked a whole star due to a cliffhanger ending so reader be warned.
Tomas K.
Aug 04, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Paladin fans
Updated review on third re-read 8/2018:
Great story about a self-exiled former knight that tries to leave the perils of prolonged war behind. Just as he leaves his homeland, he gets thrown into a chain of events that test his sense of justice as he saves a small girl and what's left of her village. These events lead to him being chosen by a forgotten goddess to bring hope back to a world that sorely needs it. In a world ravaged by forty years of war and the same time of common folk's suffering, h
Apr 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
Got this book for free through some Kobo points purchase. Went in with little expectations, came away wanting to read more of the story.
Aug 07, 2019 rated it really liked it
There are trilogies where each book can be read separately. This trilogy is not the case. The first book leaves you and the main character hung in the air. Literally, in case of the main character. So unless you are ready to read all the three books, you'd better not start reading. I am bound to do that.

The uncompromising Paladin who clearly divides the world into good and evil, merciless to its evil part, is probably not a "convenient" kind of man. But his principles and intentions impress and
Jun 21, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A Remarkable First!

This was a great read. The novel is well written. I enjoyed the detailed descriptions of facial expressions, thoughts, and actions. Yet, it felt like I was reading two stories. The first half felt too "goody two shoes." The second became a little more "gritty" and a little more to my liking. If the story stays there, it will be a great series. One drawback I found was the paladin's partner, Marte. She needs more character development. The audience needs to know more about wher
Wendi Stanton
Jun 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book has no Romance! Thank you!
I love the internal dialogue of the main character. This is a perfect beginning of what could be a LOOONG series of books. I look forward to enjoying the characters presented here. I'm very intrigued about the Goddess aspect that is sprinkled here. It's like having a taste of my favorite Ice Cream. Definitely leaves me eager for more.
Mar 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Enjoyed this one a lot. The ending was kind of non-existent but as a fantasy reader I'm used to that. I'm looking forward to reading the next one!
Aug 29, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy
Solid book. Nothing flashy, but I loved the unique idea of becoming a legend instead of already being there. To have a "new" goddess choose her people and see it happen was a great idea. I didn't like the authors choice of words on occasion, it felt like he used a $100 word where a 1$ word would have fit, and often just because. But other than that, my intention was held throughout and the action was exciting. The main character was one I could really get behind, and I'm looking forward to the n ...more
Newton Crawford
Jun 20, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Love it! LOVE it! LOVE IT!

With a wonderful first person writing style similar to Terry Mancour and Michael G Manning, the first book of the Paladin trilogy will engage readers of all ages. I'm ready for book two ... now ... today! A great beginning!
Feb 14, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Really enjoyed it. Looking forward to the next one.
Brian Blaski
Sep 15, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Best debut I've read in MANY years
Sep 20, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It was good

It was good enough for me to right a review which says a lot if you knew what I was like peace
Common Ground
Jul 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Desperately waiting for Michael Kramer to do the audible for book 2
Nicholas Voyles
Nov 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Good storytelling here. Solid 5 stars because you get everything you want in a fantasy. It’s not a classic but entirely worth the read.
3.75/5 stars
William Hahn
Sep 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Splendid epic fantasy driven by a rock-steady hand on the tiller as the author pays out an enormous tale through the personal view of the characters living it. What really grabbed me about this story is that Mr. Ford went right to heart of belief itself-- he's not afraid to use the G-word as he explores the religions of his world in a way that's completely credible and varied. No sect is totally comfortable, none hokey, all have evidence of a reality behind them. Disbelievers and skeptics rub sh ...more
Jul 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Man, I've been on fire lately, hitting some GREAT new authors, and happy to say that Ford is another one. This debut novel just really caught on with me, it was a little slow initially, but really picked up and I just fell in love with the characters and the unfolding world - and the mystery behind everything. It really is a unique take on paladin(s?) - particularly the genesis of a paladin. Sure, paladins are a trope in classic fantasy, but usually they just spring into a story fully grown, but ...more
Sean Helms
Jul 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Very pleased I gave this author a chance. Paladins aka holy knights have always interested me and was the reason I tried this book.
It's hard to believe this is Ford's first novel because it was well-written with polished characters full of personality and depth. It did take a couple of chapters to actually get into the story, but it proved well worth the effort.
Sir Allystaire begins as a hard-bitten knight, brooding, without direction, and brutal in his straightforward manner of combat until he
Jul 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Loved it. A solid piece of fantasy writing. I'll admit, I read the introduction and thought to myself "oh no here we go again. Another one of these fantasy stories with 6million characters all with strange names I'm going to have to try and remember". It turned me off a little bit. But, once I got past that, the book quickly turned into a excellent and unconfused narrative. I was impressed by some of the little things that Ford did in terms of world building. Links as the currency, using turns a ...more
Nov 30, 2019 rated it really liked it
This was an entertaining fantasy read. Alystaire is a flawed hero, but still honorable enough to root for without feeling bad about it. The story line feels reminiscent of and old school RPG campaign, but none of the characters are written as invulnerable. The worldbuilding is gently weaved into the plot. In short, Mr. Ford does what many current fantasy authors do not - he tells compelling story that places powerful heroes into danger and gives the reader characters to root for, not against, in ...more
Neil Robinson
Oct 11, 2018 rated it really liked it
Loved this book!

Having read many hundreds of fantasy books including most of the big names, when I came across this one I almost wept. finding a good fantasy to sink into is getting difficult. this book also got me because it follows a single character for most of it. This was a plus for me as I have begun to... struggle with multi character stories. Do not get me wrong, I love the big books but sometimes they make me feel like they want to prolong a book by throwing in extras and avoiding the m
Sep 13, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

... the characters, the writing, the editing, the plot... all of it excellent. This book is a true pleasure to read, written by someone who polished it into a shining piece of art. It's also huge, so you get quite the value on your money. Oh, and don't mind the slow start: it's just there to steep the characters a bit before the action gets going. Helpful.

If you like sword and sorcery stories, then you definitely need to get this one. Highly recommended.
Mark Romero
Sep 20, 2018 rated it it was ok
2.5 Stars

Book could've been great. Instead it was okay.

Started off great though. Interesting characters. Not the best world building but good enough to keep me interested. Then all of a sudden, the story just accelerated through time skipping and randomness. And then the book was finished. Disappointing because the ending could've been a great climax. Instead, I was sitting there wondering where the story went.
Joey Stettnisch
Mar 01, 2019 rated it really liked it
I typically avoid books that deal with religion, but then I saw that Michael Kramer did the audiobook. Homeboy can effin narrate , but not just that, almost every fantasy he ends up narrating will be great/good/instant classic. I still remember listening to Mistborn/Stormlight audiobooks (I'm dyslexic quite badly) and thinking I'll be able to read whenever I want... I need every fantasy audiobook now.
Jennifer Lockhart
Apr 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
This booked gripped me more then WoT did when I started reading it. The usual journey made by the main characters happens, but leaves you actually wanting to know where they go and what happens next.
Strategically-placed character introductions make this book new every few chapters.
I gave this first part of the Trilogy of four stars only because the ending is quite abrupt. I'm happy I had the second book on audio already and was able to seamlessly transfer over.
Jun 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Well done good vs evil sword & sorcey

Good story within the genre. Different enough to be interesting and the characters are well drawn. Not YA which I appreciate but also not noir. Beautiful goddess, ugly broken nose hero, vanishing female warrior and a dwarf. What’s not to like? The second book is out and also quite good with the third due in September.
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Daniel M. Ford was born and raised near Baltimore, Maryland. He holds a B.A. in English from Villanova University, an M.A. in Irish Literature from Boston College and an M.F.A. in Creative Writing, concentrating in Poetry, from George Mason University. As a poet, his work has appeared most recently in Soundings Review, as well as Phoebe, Floorboard Review, The Cossack, and Vending Machine Press. H ...more

Other books in the series

The Paladin Trilogy (3 books)
  • Stillbright (The Paladin Trilogy #2)
  • Crusade (The Paladin Trilogy #3)

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