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Shy Knives

(Pathfinder Tales)

3.63  ·  Rating details ·  102 ratings  ·  19 reviews
A Quiet Place to Hide

Shaia "Shy" Ratani used to be a member of the most powerful thieves' guild in Taldor—right up until she cheated her colleagues by taking the money and running. The frontier city of Yanmass seems like a perfect place to lie low, until a job solving a noble’s murder reveals an invading centaur army ready to burn the place to the ground. Of course, Shy co
Paperback, 352 pages
Published October 18th 2016 by Tor Books
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Mogsy (MMOGC)
4.5 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum

While this is only my third venture into the world of Pathfinder Tales, I swear the experience is only getting better with each book. And my latest read, Shy Knives, just completely stole the show.

Backing up a bit though, I was excited when I first learned that the wickedly funny Sam Sykes had been asked by Paizo to write a novel for them and that he would be joining the Pathfinder fun, but I think I would have jumped on
Joel Flank
Mar 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shaia "Shy" is an irrepressible con artist, thief, sometimes assassin, and looking out for herself. She also has, certainly not a heart of gold, but a heart which loves gold, and might have a only slightly tarnished bit of silver in it. She at least has a soft spot for those in need, if it doesn't require her going too far above and beyond.

So when she's offered a chance to investigate a murder for a slightly down on her luck minor noble, it sounds like easy money, and a way to line her pockets
Oct 18, 2019 rated it liked it
I listened to this on audio, and although I was enjoying it and the narration was really good, I had a terrible time finishing it. Actually, I have been having a terrible time finishing anything lately, so I suspect my own distraction impacted my enjoyment of this book. Without this distraction, this may have been a 4 star read? To be honest, I can't find much to complain about with this story, other than my own inability to concentrate.

I will say that, although this is written several years ea
Dec 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Sam Sykes does it again.

Shy Ratani is a thief and a killer. Someone who lurks in the shadows, while just as often spouting witty insults. She's hired by a down on her luck (and funds) noblewoman, to find her husband's killer.

And so, Shy stumbles into a hot mess. Running from murderous jilted lovers, infiltrating centaur herds, breaking free OwlBear creatures, and getting invloved with beings from Heaven and Hell alike.

This book is pure fun. With a lot, and I mean alot, of neck stabbings.

Dec 10, 2016 rated it liked it
Previously published at

Sam Sykes has joined the Pathfinder world. I know there are a lot of readers out there excited to find this out. Sykes brings his humor that has won him many fans in the past to a gripping who dunit mystery set in the Pathfinder world entitled Shy Knives.

Shaia ‘Shy’ Ratani, a thief with a heart of bronze who hasn’t quiet decided to turn away from her roguish ways is hired by Dalaris, a grieving woman whose betrothed was murdered. Everyone says he was murde
Feb 15, 2020 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2020
A pathfinder tale about a rogue, scheming nobles in Taldor and centaurs. There were some very nice sentences and scenes in here. But the story was quite a dime a dozen and I did not really connect with the main characters.
Paul Turkstra
May 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
Not bad for my first Sam Sykes novel. The story was great throughout and had me laughing a lot. The ending was a bit anti-climactic but overall a great read.
Bart Vervaet
Apr 20, 2018 rated it liked it
the story was good, but the writing style not so.
Emily Woodbeck
Aug 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
Sam Sykes at his finest. Shy is imperfect in a way that makes her lovable. There are centaurs, magic, plots, and the signature humour that cuts through all the feelings.
Nov 12, 2016 rated it liked it
A fantasy beach read... entertaining and enjoyable
Oct 15, 2016 rated it liked it
Shy Knives provided me with everything I expect from a good sword & sorcery novel: great action, an engaging quest, and interesting set pieces. Sometimes it even goes above and beyond that with its intricate relationships between well-developed characters. This isn’t Sykes’ breakout novel—he already had that with The City Stained Red—but it is proof that Paizo’s commitment to bringing established and exciting young writers to the Pathfinder Tales line is paying dividends. With all its referentia ...more
Matthew Marchitto
Feb 23, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shaia "Shy" Ratani is one messed up and broken person. She's a rogue to the extreme, and will spill your guts in a heartbeat. When she's hired by a Yanmass noble, Dalaris, Shy finds herself having to face her own emotional hang-ups in order to get the job done.

I really enjoyed this book. It has a dark, sarcastic sense of humour that appealed to me. Told in first person, Shy has a strong voice and her personality bleeds through the page.

Embroiled in noble politics, the mystery takes a few unexp
Doyle Stricker
Oct 22, 2016 rated it liked it
This is a reading of an Advanced Uncorrected Proof of, Shy Knives. I won a copy for pre-reading (I think I'm supposed to mention this in the review, so... I did).
I should also mention that I have been playing tabletop RPGs for a large portion of my life. Of the RPGs I have played, PathFinder is my favorite.
While both of these aspects should influence how I review this book, it will not.
I do not review very many books on Goodreads because I have a problem with the five star rating system. I also
Nov 07, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy, owned
The humor in the book sometimes went a bit heavy on the "this would be this... except NOT, because I'm awesome" style of narration. But the action was pretty good, and I liked the characters. Definitely one of the most rogue-y depictions of a fantasy rogue that I've read, but in a way that didn't feel cheap or artificial, which I liked quite a bit. Overall quite good.
Jan 04, 2017 rated it liked it
A fun tale set in the (new to me) Pathfinder fantasy world. Quick read (< 300 pages), with a fun female lead and all the trappings of a fantasy role playing game campaign - centaurs, double crosses, complex villainous schemes, wine, whiskey and the stabbing of necks. So many necks stabbed in this story. Wouldn't mind reading more of Shaia's adventures. ...more
Aug 10, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: read-in-2019
A pot boiler fantasy that has anachronisms and paper thin plotting.
I kept going because of the setting and as I GM.
Average - but could do a lot better.
Oct 29, 2016 rated it really liked it
A decent story.
Nov 10, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: pathfinder
Some of the narrator's inner discussions were frankly hysterical. a fun read.
Nov 15, 2016 rated it liked it
Really, 3.5/5. Review forthcoming on
Justin Lance
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Feb 21, 2017
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Dave Barfoot
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Sam Sykes is the author of Tome Of The Undergates, a vast and sprawling story of adventure, demons, madness and carnage. Suspected by many to be at least tangentially related to most causes of human suffering, Sam Sykes is also a force to be reckoned with beyond literature.

At 25, Sykes is one of the younger authors to have arrived on the stage of literary fantasy. Tome Of The Undergates is his fir

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“I just saw riches. But Vishera saw love, saw tenderness, saw all the care she had poured into making this manor her home. And in her mind, I suppose that's all it was: a home. Her home. One she would do anything to protect.

And when put that way, was I right to stop her?

I don't know. You want philosophical questions, go ask a priest.

I was here to stab a bitch.”
“But that's precisely how stupidity flourishes; in bunches, in fast-growing weeds that choke delicately nurtured knowledge.” 0 likes
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