Luke Scull is one of a handful of authors whom I got to know first as a person to some extent before actually reading his book, having last year interviewed him for Bloody Cake News’s Facebook page and then spent two hours sitting next to him chatting at BristolCon, in the company of his wife, Yesica and two other authors, Snorri Kristjansson and Mark Lawrence. And boy am I glad I did! He’s such a great guy, with an easy-going and sociable personality and not just an intense knowledge of the fantasy genre, but also of my other interest, computer roleplaying games. As I found out, as a game designer he has done some work on one of my all-time favourite games, Dragon Age, too. He was kind enough to dedicate and even doodle my copy of The Grim Company, which I have just finished and all I can say: WHOA…!
My only complaint and criticism really: The book was not grim.
In fact, I have hardly read a story more colourful and entertaining; not to mention the many original ideas thrown in. The variety of characters, races, monsters has blown me away and the powerful magic coiling around full-blooded fight scenes was described so vividly, it made me feel as if I was watching it in 3D. The numerous threads of this epic adventure started off at various places on its world map and were masterfully woven together as the story progressed into a spectacular finale.
I absolutely loved what he did with the character of Davarus Cole, who also put me through a wide spectrum of varied emotions that ranged from annoyed to sympathetic and even affectionate at times. Out of all the characters I believe he was the one that made me both laugh and cringe the most. I went through bloody battles, massacres and tortures without blinking an eye, but whenever Davarus Cole cut someone’s throat, I witnessed it as if it had been the most horrible deed in the whole book. I was intrigued by his struggle to fulfil his destiny, straddling the line between who he was and who he thought he was, only to find, that being a hero might just be a moveable feast. And no mistake.