I have mixed feelings about the fantasy genre - particularly those of the 'epic/quest' variety like this one. I often find myself feeling bored and detached - The Fellowship of the Ring is a good example. But something about this one grabbed me and didn't let go until the very end. It's not without it's flaws. The story isn't particularly original, I guessed a major plot point/spoiler pretty early on, and the overall tone felt a bit bi-polar at times. But none of that really mattered in the end. I felt completely invested in the characters - even when they were being utterly irritating. Definitely recommended for lovers of the genre - and maybe even skeptics like myself. I'm definitely looking forward to more in the series!