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The Hob's Bargain

3.97  ·  Rating details ·  8,258 ratings  ·  419 reviews
Alternate-cover edition can be found here

Beauty and The Beast

Hated and feared, magic was banished from the land. But now, freed from the spells of the wicked bloodmages, magic—both good and evil—returns. And Aren of Fallbrook feels her own power of sight strengthen and grow…

Overcome by visions of mayhem and murder, Aren vows to save her village from the ruthless raiders w
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Paperback, 281 pages
Published June 1st 2008 by Ace Books (first published 2001)
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Patricia Talley I have messaged her on facebook to ask this and if Dragons Bones, Dragon's Blood, Raven's Books and The Hob would ever be in Hardcover. Probably not…moreI have messaged her on facebook to ask this and if Dragons Bones, Dragon's Blood, Raven's Books and The Hob would ever be in Hardcover. Probably not says her personal assistant who monitors the facebook page. "The paranormal romance stuff is what sells" was the answer I got. Its too bad really, these books show her talent as a writer, not the stuff I have read so far in the Mercy Thompson series or Alpha and Omega series. Write her publisher! Real letter not email. (less)

Community Reviews

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3.97  · 
Rating details
 ·  8,258 ratings  ·  419 reviews


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Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽
Jun 14, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Back when I was first getting into the Mercy Thompson urban fantasy series, I went to the library I looked for the first book, Moon Called. It was checked out, so after I recovered from my sad I took a look through Patricia Briggs' other books and decided to try this one.

The Hob's Bargain is definitely not urban fantasy - it's an old-school type of fantasy, set in a small town in a medieval kingdom, where sorcery has a (deservedly) bad reputation and magical powers are frowned upon, though a lo
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Gavin
Nov 27, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: fantasy
This was a loose mix between a Beauty and the Beast retelling and a story of the Fae in a traditional fairy tale style fantasy world. It had a bit of romance but was also a little dark at times.

For hundreds of years the natural magic of the land has been suppressed by the blood mages. They hold a ruthless grip on magic. They kill any female showing signs of the gift and recruit or kill any male showing the sign. Aren of Fallbrook has been hiding her gift her whole life but when something breaks
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 Danielle The Book Huntress (Back to the Books)
This was a lovely book. Although short, it was a full meal, rich with humor, magic, the struggle between good and evil, and a nice little romance.

Aren was a great heroine. You see her go from meek and frightened to powerful and independent in her own right. Ms. Briggs excels at writing loveable characters who I care about, cheering along as they grow, and as they fight the good fight. She did a great job of showing Aren come into knowledge of her gifts, and I admired her ability to survive so mu
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Jacqueline J
Dec 20, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy, kindle-reads
Third time reading this book. Just as good as the first two times! Oddly enough I noticed as I added a read date, read this the last time exactly 7years ago to the day.

My second reading of this book. I enjoyed it as much as I did the first time. This is a stand alone fantasy. So if you need a little fantasy fix and don't want to get into something epic this is a great read. One of the things that I appreciate about this story is that it is not, in fact, epic. I get tired of every character being
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Kathleen
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Crystal Starr Light
Unfulfilled Fantasy Potential

Aren has been married to Daryn all of one day when raiders appear, killing her entire family. She feels guilty, knowing she had the sight, and might have been able to save them had she not been so busy hiding her ability from those that would kill her. Now, she must find a way to get rid of the raiders and the magical creatures that have suddenly appeared.

I adore Patricia Briggs. The first book of hers I read, “Steal the Dragon”, completely captivated me. It was exci
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Jane Stewart
I wanted it to be over. Too much telling, not showing. The physical book is better than the audiobook.

AUDIOBOOK PROBLEMS:
I do not recommend this as an audiobook. It should be read, not listened to for three reasons. The first problem is knowing if something is a vision or is happening. For example Aren is talking to a man, has a vision, and then continues talking to him. At first I thought the entire thing was conversation. Then I realized, no she was having a vision in the middle of the convers
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KatieV
Jun 22, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, pnr
I really enjoyed this early Briggs outing. Her talent for fully fleshed-out characters is really starting to shine.

The book begins on the last day of normal life for newly married farmer's wife Aren and her medieval/fantasy world village. In the first chapter she loses her entire family and the world as everyone knows it is gone.

Aren had 'the sight', mostly feelings of dread accompanied by small visions that could only make sense in hindsight. It was a useless, torturous, and secret curse. Magi
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Jacob Proffitt
Jun 15, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, romance
This is a fun book with a deeply sympathetic character it was easy to fall in love with. Aren is stronger than she thinks she is, and more powerful. And compassionate as well—way more than I could have managed. Briggs does a great job creating a story and setting with very broad strokes of power and struggle brought down to an isolated village in a valley far from the devastation wrought by war but feeling its effects nonetheless.

This is facilitated by creating three forces her villagers need to
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Moonlight Reader
Read this ages ago - I love Patricia Briggs's fantasy, but this one wasn't my favorite. I prefer her Raven series, and Dragon Bones.
Tracey
Sep 05, 2009 rated it it was amazing
This is another in a long line of read-so-long-ago-a-reread-feels-like-the-first-time books. I didn't remember a thing about it, except that I loved it then - and I loved it now.

The story centers around Aren, a woman who has lived in a remote farming village all her 29 years, and who had just about resigned herself to being a spinster when her father engineered a match for her. One reason the resignation wasn't as bad as it might have been, and why marriage isn't as simple as it might have been
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Olga Godim
Jan 24, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy-scifi
A re-read.
This is one of Briggs’ earlier novels, before the Mercy Thompson series, and it’s a stand-alone. It’s a nice book with interesting characters, but I read it just after Moon Called, and the contrast was glaring. This book is much less mature. The heroes are less alive. The plot is less focused. The relationships are less realistic. Nevertheless, I enjoyed it but I would caution you: don’t read it back to back with Briggs’ later novels, either Mercy Thompson or Alpha & Omega.
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Mara
Jul 24, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
I've been thinking of reading one of Ms Briggs earlier stories for some time. But all were part of a series, and I had (still do) so many books in my TBR shelf that I dragged my feet at the idea. The The Hob's Bargain appeared on my Amazon page, and the magpie in me won at the cry: oh shiny!

I really enjoyed the romp this book provided, the grief and sorrow too. My only nit was that the heroine was supposed to be a 30 yo woman, but I was given a young woman instead. Not a teen exactly, but neithe
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Grace
May 11, 2010 rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy-or-syfy
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Carol (StarAngel's Reviews) Allen
Hard to understand a few times but overall an enjoyable read.
Shanon
Jul 25, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: stand-alone
Hob’s Bargain is a great story. Aren, the main character – grows a lot throughout the book starting out a a scared girl that was unwilling to accept herself and her magic. However, she learns to accept herself and the powers she has and makes a new friend along the way. Some of my favorite scenes in the book were when Aren and Caefawn spent time in their lessons. I wish there was more time devoted to her time spent with Caefawn but I understand it’s hard to include EVERYTHING in one book.

The st
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Elizabeth
Nov 28, 2008 rated it really liked it
In Aren's country you've got two choices if you have magical abilities: Either you become a blood mage - evil and mad sorcerers that draw on pain and misery - or you're used as fodder and die hideously. If you're a woman, the choice is made for you. That's why Aren guards the secret of her unreliable magical sight closely and lives as unobtrusively as possible.

When a fight between blood mages wipes out whole provinces and destroys any semblance of order, the once dormant supernatural inhabitants
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Allison
The Hob's Bargain is a high fantasy that focuses on a small farming valley and a small town with medieval-type trades. There's supposedly a lord who should be protecting the people, but a magical disaster has cut the valley off and the people are on their own. The disaster awakens old magic, some friendly and some feral, so the townsfolk are suddenly dealing with a resurgence in angry Fae as well as an army of raiders.

What makes the story interesting is the mish-mash of old magical creatures ru
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Julie
Sep 01, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
A favorite of mine. I absolutely adore this book and have re-read it several times. I just love the interaction between Aren(great name BTW) and the Hob. How he uses his tail to flirt is just too cute :)...Wish there was a sequel to this one...
Katy
Nov 20, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A little bit of Beauty and the Beast in a sweet quick fairy tale like story.
Bry
Aug 15, 2009 rated it it was ok
This was a pretty easy read, but no where near as suspenseful, grabbing, and interesting as Brigg's other books. Sadly, it was pretty disappointing, but them again it is also one of her earlier works.

I found the characters to be drab, their relationships rushed, and the way to much time devoted to descriptions of the lands, which I know is important in fantasy books but was still overdone.
Jamie Collins
Sep 13, 2009 rated it did not like it
Shelves: fantasy
An unexceptional little standalone fantasy story. Briggs is a good writer, but this is just not the kind of story I enjoy, particularly since it includes lots of fey-like creatures.
Dichotomy Girl
Jun 16, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015, fantasy
A nice stand alone fantasy.
Bonnie
This just didn't do it for me. It somehow managed to be both extraordinarily boring and weird.
Sbuchler
Mar 22, 2010 rated it really liked it
Genre: Fantasy

I thought the basic concept of this world was interesting: long in the past humans and magic creatures were at war. Humanity was loosing so they took a drastic action – they cast a spell binding all the magic in the land, which means that people only have minor magical gifts. The only people who can do big magic are the blood mages who gain power by torturing people. People with minor magic gifts are a prosecuted group – the rule of the land is become a blood-mage or die. At the ve
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Blodeuedd Finland

This is a stand alone world, and it's very very light fantasy.


Plot:

Aren has the sight but that doesn't help her when her family is slaughtered by raiders. At the same time the magic that binds that earth snaps, and releases all sorts of beings, nasty hobgoblings, spirits, and a hob. The world is not as it used to be and now her village is plagued by weird beings and raiders. Aren decides to take destiny in her own hands and strikes a deal with the hob living on the mountain. But some bargains ar
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Asaria
I had a lot of fun, even if it isn't a masterpiece.

Edit: 12.11.2018

Have I stayed late at night to finish the book? I have, no regrets, though. OK, being drowsy is a drawback, luckily I have no pressing matters that need attention.

Let's get started!

I didn't change my opinion from 2015. Although the book is enjoyable, it isn't groundbreaking nor flawless. However, must all books be so?

Anyway, I applaud author's choice of protagonist. Aren is a mature woman in her thirties, who loves her village an
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Amyiw
Nov 05, 2011 rated it it was ok
2 1/2 stars
Hard to decide on 2 or 3 stars. It really wasn't good but better than OK.
Issues
-drags with descriptions of place, mountain, people (that don't make a difference), and all the fairy/spirits/wildlings.
-the Hobb doesn't even show until well into the book 30% maybe and then only to comment on the people on his mountain, which really ended up being no great information.
-the Hobb and Aren don't even meet until nearly the middle of the book, then their relationship is very subtle and sporati
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Dragana
The Hob's Bargain was on my radar for a while, since it's a standalone fantasy novel. Plus, I wanted to read something by Patricia Briggs for some time now.
In the end, I was not disappointing. It's a nice spin of a beauty and the beast plot with magic, different mythical creatures and complex characters. I especially liked that author didn't neglect the character and world building (like it happens in some other fantasy romance novels).
I'll definitely read more by Patricia Briggs in the future.
Carrie
Wonderful fantasy story, filled with interesting creatures, action, and even a gentle love story. My entire family has read this book, so this is suitable, and enjoyable, for most readers 13 and up.
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Into the Forest: The Hob's Bargain - Spoilers 3 14 Feb 12, 2019 12:05PM  
Into the Forest: The Hob's Bargain - No Spoilers 8 22 Jan 08, 2019 05:20AM  
Goodreads Librari...: Please Change book cover 2 18 Dec 29, 2016 10:43AM  
Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 2 Feb 15, 2015 04:11PM  
  • Heroes at Risk (Hero, #4)
  • Reader and Raelynx (Twelve Houses, #4)
  • The Trouble with Demons (Raine Benares #3)
  • Royal Destiny (Queen of the Orcs, #3)
  • Princess at Sea (Princess, #2)
  • Cast in Secret (Chronicles of Elantra, #3)
  • Of Swine and Roses
  • Passage (The Sharing Knife, #3)
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Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the Goodreads database with this name.

Patricia Briggs was born in Butte, Montana, to a children’s librarian who passed on to her kids a love of reading and books. Patricia grew up reading fairy tales and books about horses, and later developed an interest in folklore and history. When she decided to write a book of her own, a fantasy book seemed a n
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“It is hard to accept being different, hard to have people avoid looking at you, and still believe in yourself.” 154 likes
“Women are sneaky.” 95 likes
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