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The Pedlar and the Bandit King

(Scarlet and the White Wolf #1)

3.77  ·  Rating details ·  3,426 ratings  ·  255 reviews
Scarlet of Lysia is an honest peddler, a young merchant traveling the wild, undefended roads to support his aging parents. Liall, called the Wolf of Omara, is the handsome, world-weary chieftain of a tribe of bandits blocking a mountain road that Scarlet needs to cross. When Liall jokingly demands a carnal toll for the privilege, Scarlet refuses and an inventive battle of ...more
ebook, 221 pages
Published 2006 by Torquere Press
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Ireyon They're relatively similar. In this series, the differences between cultures are a stronger driving force of conflict because most of the series plays…moreThey're relatively similar. In this series, the differences between cultures are a stronger driving force of conflict because most of the series plays out in Lialls homeland after this book and Scarlet is not really wanted there. In "Nightrunner", the protagonists stay in Auraen is comparatively brief. Also, neither Liall nor Scarlet are thieves, so no spying or stealing business. This series is more concerned with how the politics and religions in this world work.

The character depth and emotions are equal between the series, in my estimation. Chances are, if you like the Nightrunner series you'll like this and vice versa.

I hope this helped, happy reading.(less)
Ireyon There is. I'm not sure how prominent you want it, however. The attraction and later love between the main characters is very open, though explicit sex…moreThere is. I'm not sure how prominent you want it, however. The attraction and later love between the main characters is very open, though explicit sex is not as common as in other books of the genre. The book paces itself rather well in that regard.

There are no fade to black scenes I recall. No "Yes, they're having sex but we won't show it" going on.(less)

Community Reviews

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Average rating 3.77  · 
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Start your review of The Pedlar and the Bandit King (Scarlet and the White Wolf, #1)
Cross-posted at Shelf Inflicted and at Outlaw Reviews

Once again, I’m going to gripe about authors who split novels into small parts. I don’t mind so much if the entire story is written and in my possession. I really dislike waiting forever between installments, cruel cliffhangers, and unanswered questions. Furthermore, when I pay $4.99 for a story, I want it to be complete. Otherwise, I feel I’m getting ripped off.

That said, I really enjoyed this captivating and atmospheric fantasy just as much
Thibaut Nicodème
Sep 09, 2013 rated it did not like it
Shelves: dnf
Review edited on 27/2/2014

Did not finish this book.

Being gay, or accepting of queer people in general, is not an excuse for misogyny. I say it when bloggers like Perez Hilton sexually harass an actress claiming "I'm gay so it's okay" and I'll say it when a book is riddled with too much misogyny for my brain to process.

It's one thing to enforce gender roles in a society inspired by our own. It's another to create a society from scratch where polygamy is allowed, and each "wife" is essentially a s
Jan 01, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mm-read
Hey there Little Red Riding Hood...
You sure are looking good
You're everything that a big bad wolf could want...

Well of course this song came to mind for me. Come on now...tell me you're surprised? I mean really we have a cute guy, named Scarlet, in a red hooded coat who travels through the woods...ok, he kind of travels all over the place he's a peddler and we have a big, hunky, aggressive, use to getting his own way bad guy...but not really who people refer to as a wolf but in fact goes by
Aug 19, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Review for the whole series (well currently including up until book #4, but there is more to come)

I don't have words for how much I loved this whole series. I love fantasy, but so far most fantasy I've read was lacking in the romance department. So to find a series that combines both, and in such a great way, makes me super happy. So happy I'll just have to add it to my small collection of favourites.

I found these books, because I was reading an anthology by the author and really liked her style
Cristina Monica
I found it hard to really get into the story at the beginning but, when Scarlet met the White Wolf, I got hooked and couldn't stop reading.
It was predictable but yet so beautiful and remarkably memorable. I really want to know what is going to happen next, you damn cliffhanger. :)


Jan 12, 2013 rated it really liked it
"Deception," Fate said. "Be on your guard. You will be told a lie or you will fall in love with one, and you will follow it to the ends of the earth."

I've read The Pedlar and the Bandit King years ago, right about when I started my entry into M/M fiction. In the almost-three years since then, I've revisited this book several times, I can say for certainty that this series still holds a dear place in my literary heart. Yet for some reason of insanity, I haven't written a review. So here's me, and
Emanuela ~plastic duck~
Sep 16, 2011 rated it it was amazing
There's a reason why I waited to read this book... I'm stupid!!!

I am probably loving this book a bit more than it's rationally justifiable, because there is something about the world Scarlet lives in that is eluding me and there are things about Scarlet's parents that weren't perfectly consistent, in my opinion, but when I re-read it, I will probably clear my head about it.

I can't let go of this picture of Scarlet in my mind, of this slender, beautiful, brave, confused young man in the red-coat
Just finished re-reading and loved it as much as the first time, maybe even more so, because the second time brings out the details that I didn't think significant before.
Moving onto book 2.

This is a clever, very loose, reinterpretation of the Red Riding Hood fairytale but with a young man named Scarlet as the lead character. Like Little Red, Scarlet (an odd name for man) feels the lure of adventure, of breaking away from the home hearth to dare into dangers of the world. And he meets his big bad wolf in the guise of a mysterious leader named Liall.

I want this to be all about the beautiful Scarlet hooking up with the virile Liall, but the author insists on building a rich, compelli
I'm writing this review after I've read Scarlet and the White Wolf for the third time. To say I enjoyed this story even more this last re-read is an understatement.

I loved Scarlet and his pride and Liall and his games. The fact that both of them can't help but desire each other, even with Scarlet in denial, made the story all the better. Especially since Scarlet has been searching for something for such a long time and doesn't realize until almost too late that Liall is what he's looking for.

I l
May 27, 2012 rated it really liked it
The Pedlar and the Brigand King is a tale that succeeds in entertaining the reader with otherworldly adventures where deep characterization has no part to play, certainly, but which offers interesting characters who fulfil their function to mirror human weaknesses.

The author builds an extremely rich world of kingdoms and people I still need to become familiar with but I liked feeling slightly disoriented; it’s part of the game, after all!
I enjoyed the story that may be without big surprise but p
Lilia Ford
Jan 26, 2013 rated it really liked it
This is a very strong beginning to the series. The world-building is especially good, with an intriguing mix of races and cultures, and tons of political conflicts between them. I especially admired the movement between city, rural village and the gypsy like encampment. Scarlet and Liall are terrific as the leads. The series of encounters with Scarlet trying to evade Liall's toll was one of the more original and satisfying meet-cutes I've found in a fantasy series. The author creates a great ten ...more
Dec 15, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: paranormal, m-m
4.5 stars
This book is brilliant.
The author has created an interesting world, and from the first few pages I was completely enthralled.
Scarlet is a great character, young and full of passion inside, but still smart and level headed on the outside. He's young in the story, but has worked since he was fourteen, and we have the image of a young man that's both still innocent and naive, and not at all.
The Wolf is another great character, full of mysteries that still have to be revealed.
What I appreci
Jul 29, 2010 rated it it was amazing
UPDATE: Old review, but I adore this series so much it get's fanart. This work is a part of my Project Disneyfy, so be sure to check it out for more LGBTQ+ book art!

I feel extremely lucky to have stumbled across this book. It has everything that I look for in a series; passion, action, drama, fluff, light comedy, and even a powerful reference to Red Riding Hood.

I was sucked into the emotions and felt the weight of a shift in mood. The contrast between scenes had me laughing out loud one moment,
Sonia ~Ruber's fiancé in Crystal Court universe~
Wow! I loved this book! I can't wait to get to the next book in the series so I'll be short in my review:

From the beginning we meet our red hooded pedlar, Scarlet of Lysia. He's an honorable Hilurin (the ruling nation of the world, but on the verge of being extinct). He is on his way to his family in the hilurian village Lysia. It's there that he hears of a Kasiri tribe (I guess that could be similar to gypsies caravans in our world?) led by Liall the Wolf (from the northern lands Rshan na Ostre
Alex Alden
May 09, 2013 rated it it was ok
My goodness, this author is in love with info-dumps. You could have deleted 70% of this book and all that would have been left would have been story; it would have been a huge improvement. Every time something was starting to happen, some exciting event or interesting conversation, everything would grind to a halt so we could have 5 pages of info-dumping.

I wanted to like this book, I really did because I love fantasy and finding m/m fantasy that's half decent is so unbelievably hard. This was no
Konstantina P.
Jan 22, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A fantasy book with a M/M romance, in some ways better than all the cliché stories out there. The slow-build is sweet and leaves you with strong feelings for the two main characters. No explicit scenes in this first part of "Scarlet and the White Wolf" series. The author handled that expertly. Where she could just throw in a sex scene to make things steamy, she decided to play with her characters' qualms instead. Kudos to that.

The only negative was the too many names (for places, not people) and
I've been wanting to start Scarlet and the White Wolf for a long time and not really sure why I waited so long. The series gets off to a great start, the world-building is exceptionally good, I love all the little details and the main characters Liall and Scarlet are going to be fantastic together, I just know it.

There's not much romance in this book, it's more of a slow building sexual tension between Liall and Scarlet but I have a feeling that's going to change in Mariner's Luck. Well I hope
Oct 03, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Really enjoyed this m/m fantasy story. Kirby Crow is a talented author, great characterisation and world-building.
'"I know thee," Liall whispered urgently. It felt like all of his heart was pouring out into these few short words, yearning hungrily toward Scarlet like a flower does toward the sun..'
Apr 04, 2018 rated it liked it
Don't hate me, maybe it's just me but it didn't wow me...

The world building was relatively interesting.
There were many descriptions, that were quite extensive, but didn't really build a big picture.
I LOVED Liall, but, excuse my French, Scarlet was quite often acting like a pinched maiden.

His resolve by the end kind of saved the day, otherwise that would be a two star read.
Emily G
I loved this book! The strapline is 'A romantic retelling of a classic fairytale...' in truth, the story only has one scene that comes from Little Red Riding Hood and of course, Scarlet wears a red coat but that's where the similarities end. Set on the southern continent of Nemerl, Scarlet makes his trade and supports his family, as a pedlar. He mets Liall the Wolf at a toll road, Liall and his band of bandits are holding. Liall asks for a kiss as the toll, Scarlet refuses and a battle of wills ...more
Aug 29, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Fantasy readers
cliffhanger, this book haz it

NOW that it finished the adventure will start!

5 stars, can't give less
I can't believe it took me so long to grab this one. Loved everything about it- the world building, the MC's, wonderfully rich and real characters. The snark, delicious chemistry and just the right amount of angst/hurt comfort.
Holding back on the fifth star 'till I've finished the series.
Oct 02, 2011 rated it really liked it
Scarlet and the White Wolf, at the beginning was pretty boring and I couldn't get into it. There were used many new words without explanation, so it didn't help with understanding the story.

But then, something has changed. We got to know Liall and suddenly, also the main character, Scarlet has become different. I loved reading the banter between them and I impatiently waited to see how their story was going to end.

Overall, it's an interesting fantasy story (I won't say "well-written", because so
Mello ❣ Illium ✮Harry✮ ☀Myrnin☀ Torin Ichimaru

Scarlet of Lysia is an honest peddler, a young merchant traveling the wild, undefended roads to support his aging parents. Liall, called the Wolf of Omara, is the handsome, world-weary chieftain of a tribe of bandits blocking a mountain road that Scarlet needs to cross. When Liall jokingly demands a carnal toll for the privilege, Scarlet refuses and an inventive battle of wills ensues, with disastrous results.

Scarlet is convinced that Liall is a worthless, immoral rogue, but when the ho
Sep 19, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Need.More.Stars. MORE! Loved it!

Review to follow.

Upon finishing this book, my initial thoughts were... I need more stars to rate it properly!

I really loved this one. Scarlet was such a wonderful character, he won my heart very early on. And Liall... OhMY! How much do I love Liall?! I want to keep him for my very own!

This was my third time reading Kirby Crow. Kirby's writing just knocks my socks right off. So vivid, so packed full of emotion, just so all around fabulous. With this book
Jan 04, 2012 rated it it was amazing
The whole Scarlet and the White Wolf series is, without doubt, one of my favourites.
The world-building is excellent and the characters great. From page 1 I really loved Scarlet, and wanted to follow him wherever he went and whatever happened to him.
Lyall happens. And yeah, I love him too, but Scarlet is without doubt the character that talks to me most. I love his spirit, the fact that his race, the Hilurin, are small; that he is pretty rather than handsome as they're not a hairy race. He lacks
G.B. Gordon

It doesn't happen very often anymore that I can just lose myself in a book without judging everything I've learned to care so much about - style, plot, characters - you name it. And so, when, I started this one, the virtual red pencil came out quickly, marking typos, striking out over-explanations, info dump, and narrator comment, right on the first few pages.

I'm not quite sure what happened after that. Somewhere between page 20 and 50 the story found its stride, its voice. It grabbed me by
Don Bradshaw
This was an excellent beginning to what should be a terrific series. The world building was awesome and never really ends. Scarlet and Liall are perfect foils and their relationship keeps changing throughout the story. I loved the adventure that drew me in from page one and carried me right to the last page. I don't know why I didn't read this epic fantasy sooner but it was well worth the wait.
Frau Sorge (Yuki)
Little Red Hood and Big Bad Wolf meet again and boy, the feels...
I really, really liked this book and I will read EVERYTHING in this serie. As you should too.
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The Backlot Gay B...: Scarlet and the White Wolf series by Kirby Crow 30 41 May 22, 2016 06:12PM  

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Kirby Crow worked as an entertainment editor and ghostwriter for several years before happily giving it up to bake brownies, read yaoi, play video games, and write her own novels. Whenever she isn't slaying Orcs or flying a battleship for the glory of the Amarr Empire, she can be found in the kitchen, her vegetable garden, or at the keyboard, tapping away at her next book.

Kirby is a winner of the

Other books in the series

Scarlet and the White Wolf (6 books)
  • Mariner's Luck (Scarlet and the White Wolf, #2)
  • The Land of Night (Scarlet and the White Wolf, #3)
  • The King of Forever (Scarlet and the White Wolf #4)
  • The Temple Road (Scarlet and the White Wolf, #5)
  • The Mountain of Many Stars (Scarlet and the White Wolf, #6)

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“Liall realized that this was the first time he had really been alone with Scarlet.
He stood up and held out his hand. The blanket dropped from his shoulders. "Come here."
Scarlet reached out to him tentatively and Liall quickly dragged him into his arms. He fits there perfectly, Liall thought, snug if not a little small. Scarlet did not respond at first, as if he would pull away, and for a moment Liall believed he had made a huge mistake. Then, surprisingly, Scarlet sighed and his arms went around Liall's back. Scarlet turned his head to rest his cheek against Liall's bare chest as hey listened to the rain batten on the roof.
"Thank you for saving my life." Liall murmured.”
More quotes…