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Luck in the Shadows (Nightrunner, #1)
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Luck in the Shadows

(Nightrunner #1)

4.08  ·  Rating details ·  16,472 ratings  ·  957 reviews
When young Alec of Kerry is taken prisoner for a crime he didn’t commit, he is certain that his life is at an end. But one thing he never expected was his cellmate. Spy, rogue, thief, and noble, Seregil of Rhiminee is many things–none of them predictable. And when he offers to take on Alec as his apprentice, things may never be the same for either of them. Soon Alec is tra ...more
Mass Market Paperback, 479 pages
Published September 1996 by Bantam Spectra
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Amber None in the first book, although they do have a very strong friendship. There is some in following books, but the main focus of the story is on their…moreNone in the first book, although they do have a very strong friendship. There is some in following books, but the main focus of the story is on their adventures rather than their romance.(less)
Gavin Patterson Yes. Finding a new fantasy book with fresh and interesting characters who engage so well with each other is rare. Engaging dialogue and character…moreYes. Finding a new fantasy book with fresh and interesting characters who engage so well with each other is rare. Engaging dialogue and character evolution fills a vacuum much needed in fantasy.
I was delighted when I found this book and gorged on as much of the series I could find at the time.
I found the book light and encouraging. (less)

Community Reviews

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✘✘ Sarah ✘✘ (former Nefarious Breeder of Murderous Crustaceans)
We are the Fearless MacHalos and we don't Only Read UF Crap we Read Fantasy Crap Too Buddy Read (WatFMawdORUCwRFCTBR™) ☠

DNF at 50%. Because zzz.

Serial DNFing Mode (SDM™): engaged.

Crap damn bloody shrimping hell. I have not one but three, as in one, two, three Freaking DNF Non Reviews (FDNR™) to write. This is it. This is the end. I know most of you out there somewhat love to watch me suffer through crappy books and take perverse pleasure in reading my DNF reviews, but I can't do this anym
Mar 21, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy
LOve LOVE this book! It's a great adventure fantasy book in the old tradition of escaping baddies and looming dark magic. I love the relationships as well. There's a connection between 2 male characters that I believe may turn romantic in the subsequent books, but honestly, it's so great and subtle and TRUE to them that wherever it goes I will be into it, and I wouldn't label it "Gay" persay, like say Melisure (which I love as well).

Definitely picking up books 2 and 3 in the trilogy, damn Kindl
Jun 02, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Why I Bought the Book: Lynn Flewelling was a key invited speaker at Yaoicon last year. I have to admit, I'd never heard of her before, but the seminar she led with Ginn Hale, Astrid Amara and Marie Sexton made me interested in buying at least this book, the first in the Nightrunner series to see whether I liked her style of writing.

Plot: Sixteen year old Alec of Kerry is a bit of a bad situation.  He was stalking a wild cat for its fur when he wandered onto private land and was caught.  As well
Mayim de Vries
Jul 21, 2018 rated it did not like it
”Luck in the shadows; you don’t question it, you just give thanks and pray it doesn’t run out!”

Luck in the Shadows fits perfectly into the classic fantasy shelf. Sadly, it does not have any added value. It has plenty of removed value, though.

Enter Seregil, a noble, a spy, a lover of luxury, and a representative of a mysterious people with a tragic past. Meet Alec, apparently a simple boy, slowly pulled by Seregil into a world where nothing is as it seems and the knowledge can only attract troubl
Alice Cai

This was harder than normal to read. I read this pretty slowly. I finally got faster at reading this at around page 400. Two main characters. (Seregil and Alec) It's not duo perspective. Different characters can also be the main voice at any point in the story, but Seregil and Alec are the most commonly used ones. There are 4 gods. There are wizards. Also there are these mysterious discs. It ended on a cliffhanger (the 1st two books are linked I think) so I'll probably read the next one bec
Robin Hobb
Jan 29, 2014 rated it it was amazing
An excellent tale with an unconventional hero.
Mar 20, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
One thing I want to say before I launch into a summary/review: the main characters are not gay; they're bisexual. Both of them express interest in and have relationships with women. It's a silly thing to get nitpicky about, but I do. On with business.

Alec is a young man, just turned sixteen and recently orphaned, who earns a living trapping and trading furs. He's lived his entire life in the wilderness, learning how to survive and navigate seemingly featureless plains and endless forests. His so
Richard Derus
May 25, 2017 rated it really liked it
Rating: 3.5* of five


When did the "w" verb infect our literary landscape? When did this cheesy, arch, absurd act best done to prove to children that adults are condescending idiots become acceptable...nay, de otherwise sensible genre literature?


Now that I've got that off my chest, I'll attempt a review.

This series is billed as LGBT fiction by several sources. It's clear from the get-go that Seregil, our main man, is gay; it's obvious that Ale
Mike (the Paladin)
I've noted before about some books that they can be very hard to rate. This is another. It opens up and catches the interest drawing you in. The story is well constructed and pretty obviously setting up a long "saga".

The thing is that there are times that the story grinds down to almost a halt. If you've read any of my other reviews you know that I'm not fond of personal stories, interpersonal relationships and romance when it takes over a narrative. In this book that doesn't actually happen...
Oct 12, 2016 rated it really liked it
This was my first time reading Lynn Flewelling's books and I was quickly drawn into the story. The mix of sword and sorcery with classic fantasy troupes means that this feels like coming home for me and the characters instantly felt like I could connect with then and as if I was able to sympathise with their struggles. I also love the fact that this book hints at and even explicitly states that there are homosexual and bisexual characters within the plot, and as the book and series goes on I am ...more
Nov 14, 2016 rated it it was amazing
It's as if this book was written just for me.

It's the perfect swashbuckling, mystery-solving, roguish adventure, wherein the main characters are bisexual. Although that is, for Alecs part, not revealed until later.

Thank you, Lynn, for this revelation of a book.

It's the story of Alec, who is saved from prison and certain death by dashing Seregil, who takes him on as an apprentice. What exactly it is Seregil does is a little unclear to Alec. It's safest to say he does a little bit of everything
Aug 17, 2009 rated it really liked it
Luck in the Shadows is about sixteen-year-old Alec of Kerry, who at the beginning of the book is taken prisoner for a crime he didn't commit. Fate brings him his cellmate Seregil, a spy, thief, and rogue. Together they escape the prison and Seregil takes Alec under his wing as his apprentice. For a while Alec enjoys experiencing things he's never done and traveling to places he's never gone. However, things take a turn for the worse when Alec and Seregil find themselves caught in a nefarious dec ...more
2.5 Stars

Alec of Kerry is taken prisoner for a crime he didn’t commit. While incarcerated, he meets Seregil of Rhiminee. Together, the two escape and Alec soon becomes Seregil's apprentice spy, rogue, thief, and Watcher. Soon, Alec and Seregil are embroiled in political intrigue and mystery in a land poised on the brink of war with only their wits, skills, and friends to keep them alive.

This one was meh. I am a fan of the fantasy genre and there was a lot of great world-building here but I had a
Dec 15, 2016 marked it as zzz-books-not-for-me
DNF: 44%
I....just...couldn't go on. It was just too boring for me...

Read in December, 2016
☙ percy ❧
anyways seregil í korit solun meringil bôkthersa literally owns my soul
Jan 24, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: favorites, lgbt
liSTEn i HATE slowburn ok you all promised me ROMANCE and its tAKING SO LONG
ill be reading book two asap
May 09, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: lgbtqia, buddy-reads
I really liked it, but it was a little slow. It wasn't always gripping, sometimes even quite predictable, but still enjoyable and amusing enough to keep me entertained.
From time to time it lost me with all the strange names and places. The world-building, however, was well done. As well as the writing and characters, esp., of course, the MCs, esp., of course, Seregil. In fell in love with bim the first time he openend his mouth :D In a way he reminds me very much of Jack Harkness... *coughs*

May 15, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy, m-m, series
Just the fifth time (and the first time in English language) in my history as a reader I will tackle the second book of a high fantasy series.
Even for that alone Luck in the Shadows would deserve five stars!
Abigail Hilton
Aug 28, 2010 rated it liked it
I wanted to like this book. It's an action/adventure fantasy that contains gay and bi-sexual characters. The book is not a romance and contains plenty of plot and action that have nothing to do with sex. We need more books like this - books with a range of sexual orientation and expression, books that contain gay men in a story that can still be enjoyed by anyone who is not a bigot. Like many straight women, I enjoy stories with gay characters, but I prefer books that have an engaging plot that ...more
ᴥ Irena ᴥ
Jul 14, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
You don't get into this story slowly. There isn't an introduction. The very first scene is in the prison followed by Seregil and Alec's escape.
The blurb doesn't say much and the genre labels on Goodreads don't help either. None of it tells you how well this book is written.

After the escape, Seregil and Alec become partners in whatever Seregil is into. He is a lot of things: from a noble to a thief and anything you can think of in between. It is wonderful to see Alec's growth and the glimpses of
Ivie ✩Born to Magic-Forced to Muggle✩
There is a lot to be said for a fantasy that has an m-m cast. There isn't many around (or more likely I haven't read many), and it was refreshingly lacking the typical hero cliché that usually accompanies such novels, and that would be a young girl at the cusp of adulthood with the classic first kiss complex.

Don't get me wrong I still enjoy my fantasies and their heroes regardless the sex or age, but it seems that the subtle nuances of male attraction did the trick for this one. Not overly inte
Sara (sarawithoutanH)
Feb 13, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2018
I really enjoyed this book! I'm not a huge high fantasy fan because I can find the pacing slow, but the world building and characters were really great in this one. I love the concept of spies going on missions in a fantasy world. Also, the main kingdom is ruled by a long line of queens, which is hella cool. I'm all for a matriarchy. I also appreciated that most of the society was accepting of different sexualities. I sense a m/m romance brewing between the two main characters. My only complaint ...more
James Chatham
This is like exactly the kind of fantasy I love. Character-based, somewhat hero's journey fantasy is like right up my alley, and this gave me that in spades. The relationship forming between Seregil and Alec is incredibly well-developed, and the auxiliary characters are fleshed out wonderfully, especially Nysander. The plot, one of rogues and politics, is interesting, albeit weirdly paced, although the pacing didn't bother me at all when reading it. I just loved this one so much!
Igor Ljubuncic
Jun 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
When Lynn wrote Luck in the Shadows back in the 90s, she started one of my favorite fantasy series. One of the few that I've actually read all the way through and not abandoned. One of the few that was pretty solid, with just an odd fluke or two.

The recipe is simple, naive and utterly fun -Seregil, a gentleman cum rake with a secret identity, Alec, a confused country lad coming of age and getting ensnared in the twists and plots of the big city, romance the kind you rarely saw in them times but
May 25, 2017 marked it as abandoned
I decided it was time to either finish it or abandon and so I do the latter. I can't rate it as I only read 30% of the novel but it simply wasn't my cup of tea - I found it boring not because nothing happened but everything seemed so bland. The characters weren't original nor compelling, I simply didn't care for them, nor for their country. Finally, the worldbuilding was far from subtle - one characters is wise and worldly, the other lived in a goddamn forest most of his life so it's a perfect o ...more
Heidi Cullinan
May 08, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: m-m
This book is good on its own, but I love it all the more because I've been so desperate for a new, good book, and the fact that it's a series only makes it more delicious.

Adventure. Fantastical worlds, but very accessible. Very "male adventure," but Flewelling makes some nice gender switches, particularly in the country of Skala. Absolutely adore the gay/bi hero, though there's no consummation of who I hope is his love interest in this book. That almost makes it better: here's a strong, allurin
At long last I have finished this audiobook. It is NOT an m/m romance, it is a young adult fantasy with two male lead characters. Possibly it heats up in subsequent books of the series but there is NO SEX in this book, not even a kiss!

I did like the characters of Seregil and Alec but I completely lost the complicated plot, possibly because it was audio, sadly one cannot skim in audio either.. Funny how 'cockerel' and 'quay' are pronounced by the American narrator!

I will NOT be completing the s
Feb 21, 2013 rated it did not like it
1.5 stars

I like none of the characters even though I agree that they aren't annoying or badly written, but I just can't get into them, nor the plot.

But...but...but...just look at the book cover of the Japanese translation of this book!!! So gorgeous!
Shaitarn .
Jul 26, 2018 rated it liked it
I originally read this book years ago and I remember really enjoying it - to the point that I've picked up the sequels over the years with an eye to reading them some day. I don't know if I've read so many books since I've become jaded and cynical or if it hasn't aged well, but it didn't engross me quite the way it did originally and I really can't figure out why.

It has so many elements I should love: a master and apprentice relationship, a pair of rogues (thieves and assassins are usually my f
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Born Lynn Elizabeth Beaulieu.

Other books in the series

Nightrunner (7 books)
  • Stalking Darkness (Nightrunner, #2)
  • Traitor's Moon (Nightrunner, #3)
  • Shadows Return (Nightrunner, #4)
  • The White Road (Nightrunner, #5)
  • Casket of Souls (Nightrunner, #6)
  • Shards of Time (Nightrunner, #7)
“Though you thrust a knife at my eyes, I will not flinch.” 62 likes
“You hardly know me. Why do you want me to come with you?"

"Who knows? Perhaps you remind me just a bit of—"

"Someone you used to know?" Alec interjected skeptically.

"Someone I used to be.”
More quotes…