The Last Garrison ePUB Û The Last Epub /


9 thoughts on “The Last Garrison

  1. John Ottinger John Ottinger says:

    Sometimes pure escapism is all I ask from a book When The Last Garrison by Matthew Beard arrived at my doorstep I knew this was what I needed as a brain break from the difficult texts I was reading for my MA degree courses So I set to reading it in my few spare moments One the one hand I was pleased the book asked little of my over weary brain On the other I was able to see how the straightforward story may disenchant a reader in a day and age when Game of Thrones is the bestselling fantasy novelBeard’s debut novel is a sword and sorcery set in the Dungeons and Dragons universe In the tale the reclusive town of Haven is besieged by kenku raven man marauders Formerly protected by an ancient magician known as the Old Stargazer the town had known no strife for centuries But the old man’s powers are weakening and the kenku are attacking and killing villagers The town council sensing the danger sends a small band of adults and young people to recruit defenders They do so heading into the city down the mountain from their village Successful the town representatives bring the adventurers home The story culminates in a final battle between the kenku the adventurers and the townspeopleThe Last Garrison reads like and probably is a novelization of a DD adventure for which Beard was dungeon master For characters we have a clear cut evil villain whose perspective we read in hints and asides ready and waiting for the hero of the hour to take on in hand to hand combat in the final battle scene There is the ostracized orphan boy Nergei servant of Old Stargazer; Kohel a bully son of the chief of the village; Luzhon the almost raped love interest and battleground for the aforementioned boys who discovers her warrior femininity over the course of the novel; the aging warrior and his companion dwarf; a female monk warrior artist; a mage and his archer sister; and a giantess they pick up when returning to Haven Beard perhaps bit off a little than he could chew with so many characters and their corresponding perspectives None of the characters gets than a cursory back story and each follows a predictable stereotypical path that their natures and their occupations destined them to from the moment the reader meets them Nergei Luzhon and Kohel are ostensibly the characters the reader is meant to identify with but Beard only relies on tropes instead of storytelling depth to gain audience sympathy for the characters and so ends up with caricatures rather than real peopleFor plot the story is clear cut From the outset the goal of the characters is to protect the town of Haven from a threat the like of which they have not seen for centuries and if lucky find out who is responsible for setting the kenku onto the village in the first place Though I found the characterization to be flat I did enjoy this aspect of the tale for its ease of reading As I mentioned before I was working on MA homework and so reading Beard’s simply constructed plotline was a welcome relief in the hours before sleep However in the clear light of day I can observe that such a simple plot will likely deter readers I will mention however that there is a plot twist at the end not wholly unexpected but it does make for some good battle scenes after the reader thought Beard had already entered the dénouement I have to say I liked it even if the characters were a little flat and the writing workmanlikeAnd the writing is workmanlike Beard has obviously worked hard to write this novel and I would not gainsay the achievement unreservedly but the flat characters and straightforward plot coupled with a tendency to overuse passive voice in an attempt to sound mythic gives Beard’s writing a stodgy uality Beard uses the traditional third person for telling most of the story some perspectives do fall into first and likes to construct his sentences to ensure the story feels suitably mythic For example take this early scene the introduces the three primary charactersKohel was afraid something he never was inside Haven; where his father reigned over everything important; where by his father’s hand Kohel ruled over everything elseNergei allowed himself a smile at his bully’s shame but his happiness was short lived the smile fled his face the feeling turned to skin crawling fear when from behind him he heard Kohel’s voice And in front of him he heard the voiceAnd from the east and farther off to the westAnd from above in the treetops where he could not see Kohel’s voice surrounded them hemmed them into the clearing in a way that a dozen real Kohels never could haveLuzhon cried out begged Kohel to explain what was happeningNotice the overuse of commas and semicolons to combine sentences Sure this is something any good writer should do on occasion but Beard does it all the time Entire paragraphs are made of just one sentence Notice also the past tense forms of the verbs Beard uses “begged” instead of “begs” “never could have” instead of “could not” The lack of active verbs while initially great for getting the mythic tone of the novel eventually began to grate on my nerves The whole story read one of those scenes in a movie where the story segues into sepia a device meant to indicate some past event that is outside the primary plotline Give Beard props he is consistent in his use of this style and as a gamer playing DD this is exactly the way I would want my dungeon master to relate the tale but in a novel form it frustrates after a whileThematically the The Last Garrison is as you might expect It is a story of bravery against overwhelming odds a young girl finding her true calling as a warrior apart from men’s influence the dangers of magic and the heroism of an orphan boy Nothing new here just the good old comfort foodOverall I cannot recommend The Last Garrison except as shallow escapism The story has potential as does Beard as a writer but it and he are not uite there yet This had all the potential to be a really exciting story that uses familiar tropes and themes with just enough of a twist to be really entertaining But the overuse of mythic tone coupled with lack of depth in characters and plot make for a easy to read but mostly dull novel Had Beard pared down the number of characters given the story a active voice and added a few twists and turns to his plot he would have had a really good novel As it stands The Last Garrison is decent reading for after you have turned your brain off for the day At any other time it is just annoying


  2. Jason Jason says:

    Starting off I have to say that The Last Garrison was a fun enjoyable read While it ended up taking me longer to get through than a book of this size normally would have the times I was able to crack it open I often found myself putting in one last chapter Matt does a solid job setting the mood and setting to the story It did not take over description commonly found in many other writings to get a visual of Haven its community and the challenge that faced them I liked the pacing and writing style of this story Often times I find myself winding down at night looking for an easy “mindless” adventure read that I can be brought along on Often times in the past I find myself getting stuck up in over narrated combat scenes or long winded descriptions of a local and found that the scene flow both in battle and character dialog in this novel to be a smooth readFrom the stand point of being a player of the game there was a larger number of characters for the book size but I felt the characters that needed to be fleshed out were given enough detail to do so This may be a different story for those not familiar with the game or a first time reader of the novels who may not make the connections may be looking for back story on some of the lesser “Heroes” of the novel Removal of a few characters or the addition of a few pages may have given the opportunity to dig deeper in to some of the classes presented for those unfamiliar with the gameMy only big complaint with the book would be getting the opportunity to find out on Nergei and Luzhon The story to me personally had me focused from the beginning on Nergei growing as a character I hope down the line that there is an opportunity to revisit them without it this part of the original story feels a bit “unfinished” While we are left with the option to dream up what may have come to be the time spent growing with them on this adventure makes me want to see what else Matthew may or may not have had in store for them It almost makes this feel like the end to a table top game where we may not ever know what happens to himWhat I liked• Pacing writing it was a nice easy read Enough was given to keep the story flowing No scenes were overly drawn out• Any uestions I may have had during the read were all answered by the end of the bookThe mystery of “The Old Star Gazer” and his lack of appearance throughout most of the book coming together• The “avenger” type villain character The end of the book had me going back to rethink what would have happened has things gone differently for himThings to improve on• My main gripe would be seeing where the evolvement of Nergei leads him in the future The story wraps things up for Haven but not for him which could have been addressed in an epilogue now hopefully in another novel or short story collection in the futureIf you want a uick enjoyable read I would recommend checking out “The Last Garrison”


  3. Matthew Matthew says:

    This is Matthew Beard’s first published novel and it shows a bit in the writing early on but as the novel progresses there are many details and plot surprises that make this a worthwhile read The beginning of this novel shows the most growing pains for the new author with some clunky writing as the story gets going The book doesn’t seem to know what it wants to be feeling like a YA fantasy book in parts but tossing in some R rated bits and pieces that might not be appropriate for younger readers I think the intent is for this to be an adult fantasy but perhaps with broader appeal to teen readers The main character Nergei is a dumpy warlock’s apprentice who stumbles through much of the novel focused on his infatuation with a pretty young lady from the village To me the character seems to stereotyped – we’ve seen this character many times before in fantasy think Samwell Tarly from George R R Martin – and the cast of minor characters that come on scene after the first 100 pages or so are far interesting The story really picks up some steam at this point after Nergei and a contingent from his village are forced to enlist the help of a group of adventurers from a nearby city This group does seem like your typical DD party at first human fighter dwarf cleric elf archer elf wizard human monk but they each have interesting histories that are developed over the course of the novel that make them different and interesting In fact one of the greatest strengths of this book is that is veers away from a focus on one main character Nergei and spends time developing much of the cast before the endA literary agent once said to me “all that matter in a new fantasy are the details” and this book does a good job of having just enough different that it’s an interesting read for both DD fans and people who might want an introduction to the DD core world You’ve got Kenku bird people Goliaths assassins of the Raven ueen and the Old Stargazer – a starpact warlock who is finally close to paying his due to the extraterrestrial forces that have granted him his power his entire lifeI was disappointed at first that the book did not connect in any obvious way to the other DD core world novels I feel like some effort could have been made on this end and even the city they visit is kept intentionally generic so it’s difficult to place this adventure on a map of the world Still I was surprised by the additions and connections to the old empire of Nerath at the end of the book so there are bits of history here for those interested in that type of thingThe print in this novel is fairly large and it’s a uick read so if you’re looking for something to read on a plane or over the weekend this is your book It’s a fun adventure with enough interesting details to satisfy fans that have read a lot of DD novels like myself but a good introduction to those who haven’t


  4. Edward Pease Edward Pease says:

    Readers of other novels in the Dungeons and Dragons line will find another excellent author to follow in Wizards of the Coast's growing catalog of excellent authors Matthew follows the standard format of the genre well and yet manages to keep the story and the characters interesting My only complaint would be that they cast of characters might have been too large for Matthew to handle and develop adeuately but the most important characters are well fleshed out and provide excellent hooks for future novels If you have never read a book of this genre I think that you will find an interesting and exciting entrance to the worlds of Dungeons and DragonsSet in the world of Nerath the novel follows an unlikely band of heroes on their uest to protect the remote mountain village of Haven from Kenku marauders ravenlike humanoidsAfter the Kenku make themselves known by attacking some villagers the decision is made by the village council to send a small group of villagers comprised mostly of teenagers to find mercenaries in “the city” There they find an aging former captain of the fallen human empire of Nerath who agrees to help them in finding warriors to free Haven from the winged threatThe plot will be very familiar to readers of other books in the genre young inexperienced characters are paired to find help discover older washed up heroesmentors in unexpected forms discover unexpected allies fight original threat discover additional previously hidden threats book ends with the potential of further novels It is a format that Wizards of the Coast the book's publisher is great at especially in the Dungeons and Dragons game line This book follows the format while providing enough character development and plot twists to keep the reader interestedThe characters were a mixed bag though Many readers will easily identify with the main character Nergei a young apprenticeservant of the village's powerful warlock protector Nergei doesn't have the talents or skills others in the village value and being isolated in the Warlock's tower has caused him to have low self esteem He feels powerless and inconseuential to the village around him even though he fantasizes of a better future with Luzhon a beautiful young and strong girl who is outside of Nergei's social status While many of the characters are developed well we are often told about the characters' back stories and drives rather than shown This method of development was necessary with the huge cast of characters as the “adventuring party” ranges from four to fifteen but leaves a lot to be desired The novel is pretty good It wasn't a break out best seller type of novel but I suspect that Matthew will only improve as an author and story teller The action is well written and kept me turning pages staying up far too late several nights I kept wanting to know how the heroes and the village would fare


  5. Stefan Stefan says:

    I had a lot of fun reading The Last Garrison It is a great introduction to Dungeons and Dragons novels and reuires no previous knowledge of the game or setting The descriptions and imagery were very good I had no problem visualizing the scenes in perfect detail Some scenes were so well done that I could actually see and feel the action A few of the characters really stood out particularly Nergei Luzhon and Sten I felt a sense of attachment to these characters Nergei and Luzhon especially as theirs was a sort of coming of age story But of all the characters the one I liked the most was the villian' of the story Temley He had the most interesting backstory and I found myself impatiently turning pages in order to read about him Veteran DnD players will also be pleased to see a reference to the basic set module Keep on the Borderlands The only negative thing I have to say about the book is that there were almost too many characters to keep up with for a novel of this length If there had been 50 or so pages maybe they could have been fleshed out a bit This caused some of the supporting characters to feel a little flat and one dimensional The final battle was what pushed it from a 3 star to a 4 star review It was so vivid that I could feel the tension of the battle and it was as if I was right in the middle of it This was Mr Beard's first book and I think he has a bright future and will only get better I hope to read from him in the future


  6. Rob Rob says:

    The Last Garrison is author Matthew Beard's first published novel and it shows the plot is predictable and the characters range from generic to painfulAt the start of the book we're introduced to Nergei one of the worst protagonists i've ever read Nergei is so painfully awkward and self doubting that i found myself groaning and rushing through any section he was featured in I would have honestly rather had the obnoxiously cliche bully Kohel for a primary characterThe actual plot of the book is the time tested invaders vs village scenario featuring Kenku raiders besieging the secluded village of Haven The village's longtime protector is losing himself to his strange magic so the village leaders send Nergei and several teenagers into the city to search for helpThe best part of the book is in the middle where we meet several new and interesting characters in the mercenaries Sten and Spundwand Sadly we also get a handful generic secondary characters who seem only in the story to fill out the striker or defender rollsThe antagonists are marginally better than their counterparts but still aren't memorable in the slightest The Kenku have one really good scene where they actually seem fairly terrifying but that's one of few bright points in the entire novelOverall this book was just bland the third act sort of floats by things that were meant to seem threatening early in the book end up being so easily overcome that i almost felt cheated by


  7. Nicholas Nicholas says:

    Overall this novel by Mr Beard was very enjoyable At times it was a page turner but I did feel it fell short with some character developmentThrough the coarse of reading I found myself wondering if there would be additional novels to delve into some of the stories eluded to by the characters as well as a continuation of what happened in Haven after the resolution beyond what the epilogue explored I felt left hanging at the end wanting to know of Nergei and Luzhon growth and possible relationshipAll the action scenes were very well written I visualized what was going on At times it did feel like descriptive writing for an actually DD game scenario with game terminology thrown in as descriptors I don't know if that is actually a bad thing I liked it personally as it was written well It may of stood out to me because of my gaming experienceIn the end it was a very enjoyable story and well written It does feel somewhat rushed at the end to close out the story where I believe could of been developed for either additional chapters or a series of books I suspect this was due to publishing constraints andor reuirements on length which I do not fault Mr Beards writing forI hope to enjoy books by Mr Beard in the future


  8. Taylor Taylor says:

    Overall the book was pretty good but I felt it took too long to move the story forward The story ideas were good and I enjoyed the uniue ideas with this However I really felt like I was talking to a gamer about how cool their game was The characters felt a little flat and did not offer much developmentThe story was long in the early stages and felt rushed at the end I would have liked to have had character development especially for the main character


  9. Kevin Kevin says:

    I wanted a uick and easy fantasy escape read and this was perfect Cool characters interesting plot probably could have gone longer to be fleshed out but I enjoyed the rideI wasn't a huge fan of how the main characters were left is there a seuel I need to know what happens


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The Last Garrison [KINDLE] ✽ The Last Garrison By Matthew Beard – Thomashillier.co.uk In the shadows between the living world and the land of the dead the night's terrors lurkFor as long as anyone can remember the mountain village of Haven has been under the protection of an ancient wa In the shadows between the living world and the land of the dead the night's terrors lurkFor as long as anyone can remember the mountain village of Haven has been under the protection of an ancient warlock known as the Old The Last Epub / Stargazer But after countless years spent deciphering the mysteries of the night sky the old man is starting to slip Now a dark figure controls the forest with minions of kenku marauders — crowlike humanoids that menace the villagers with violence and mayhemIf the Old Stargazer cannot or will not protect them the villagers will have to find someone who can Nergei an orphan raised by the warlock is chosen to find help Since Nergei has nothing to offer potential mercenaries his task seems futile until he meets Sten a battle weary adventurer whose sense of justice is stronger than his desire for goldTogether they recruit an unlikely band of heroes to protect Haven from the ever threatening incursions of the kenku minions When the group flushes the marauders into the light of day the shadows cast by the crow men are like none they had ever imagined.

  • Paperback
  • 309 pages
  • The Last Garrison
  • Matthew Beard
  • English
  • 19 November 2014
  • 9780786957934