Робин Хобб
Shaman’s Crossing

Shaman’s Crossing
Robin Hobb

‘Fantasy as it ought to be written’ George R.R. MartinYoung Nevare Burvelle is the second son of a second son. Traditionally in Gernia, the firstborn son is heir to the family fortunes, the second son bears a sword and the third son is consecrated to the priesthood. Nevare will follow his father – newly made a lord by the King – into the cavalry; to the frontier and thence to an advantageous marriage, to carry on the Burvelle name. It is a golden future, and Nevare looks forward to it with relish.For twenty years King Troven's cavalry have pushed the frontiers of Gernia out across the grasslands, subduing the fierce tribes of the plain on its way. Now they have driven the frontier as far as the Barrier Mountains, home to the enigmatic Speck people. The Specks – a dapple-skinned, forest-dwelling folk – retain the last vestiges of magic in a world which is becoming progressive and technologised. The 'civilised' peoples base their beliefs on a rational philosophy founded on scientific principle and a belief in the good god, who displaced the older deities of their world. To them, the Specks are primeval savages, little better than beasts. Superstitions abound; it is said that they harbour strange diseases and worship trees. Sexual congress with them is regarded as both filthy and foolhardy: the Speck plague which has ravaged the frontier has decimated entire regiments.All these beliefs will touch Nevare's training at the Academy; but his progress there is not as simple as he would wish. He will experience prejudice from the old aristocracy: as the son of a 'new noble' he is segregated into a patrol comprising other new nobles' sons, all of whom will encounter injustice, discrimination and foul play in that hostile and deeply competitive environment. In addition, his world view will be challenged by his unconventional girl-cousin Epiny; and by the bizarre dreams which visit him at night. And then, on Dark Evening, the circus comes to Old Thares, bringing with it the first Specks Nevare has ever seen…

Shaman’s Crossing

Book One of the Soldier Son Trilogy

Robin Hobb

Copyright (#ulink_16dde87e-2da4-594f-acab-4c30b43231f7)

HarperVoyager An Imprint of HarperCollinsPublishers 77–85 Fulham Palace Road, Hammersmith, London W6 8JB

www.harpervoyagerbooks.com (http://www.harpervoyagerbooks.com)

Published by Voyager 2006

Copyright © Robin Hobb 2005

Cover illustration © Jackie Morris

Map by Andrew Ashton

Robin Hobb asserts the moral right to be identified as the author of this work

A catalogue record for this book is available from the British Library

This novel is entirely a work of fiction. The names, characters and incidents portrayed in it are the work of the author’s imagination. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, events or localities is entirely coincidental.

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Source ISBN: 9780007196128

Ebook Edition © SEPTEMBER 2008 ISBN: 9780007236886

Version: 2014–12–03

Dedication (#ulink_21677e18-01dc-5685-ae5b-ef95fd5d7a71)

To Caffeine and Sugar, my companions through many a long night of writing.


Cover (#ub746530b-1b1f-5073-9fea-5fc98fd9cc45)

Title Page (#u889d1579-1ec4-5c2b-aaa4-ffc50e7192e6)

Copyright (#ulink_e02241ad-e497-5166-9a6b-173ab8a8d019)

Dedication (#ulink_76c7b02e-f4cc-5778-8aa2-15c291042c49)

Map (#u2097f448-1556-5259-9755-e756e4548b9b)

One: Magic and Iron (#ulink_e10a7d31-0727-5bb4-bb76-5ae986da8dc4)

Two: Harbinger (#ulink_a8fefdf1-7d04-56b8-b312-da648a0ffb02)

Three: Dewara (#ulink_302f70b1-be46-51df-acf5-064793801c19)

Four: Crossing the Bridge (#ulink_2b53a449-e388-52dd-80cc-2ebc32529f96)

Five: The Return (#ulink_a12720f8-4c58-5a43-a8b4-309e0c14fc5d)

Six: Sword and Pen (#ulink_b72e98e5-ab8b-5927-b5c9-5115096d8fc2)

Seven: Journey (#litres_trial_promo)

Eight: Old Thares (#litres_trial_promo)

Nine: The Academy (#litres_trial_promo)

Ten: Classmates (#litres_trial_promo)

Eleven: Initiation (#litres_trial_promo)

Twelve: Letters From Home (#litres_trial_promo)

Thirteen: Bessom Gord (#litres_trial_promo)

Fourteen: Cousin Epiny (#litres_trial_promo)

Fifteen: Séance (#litres_trial_promo)

Sixteen: A Ride in the Park (#litres_trial_promo)

Seventeen: Tiber (#litres_trial_promo)

Eighteen: Accusations (#litres_trial_promo)

Nineteen: Intervention (#litres_trial_promo)

Twenty: Crossing (#litres_trial_promo)

Twenty-One: Carnival (#litres_trial_promo)

Twenty-Two: Disgrace (#litres_trial_promo)