Third in Farland's Runelords series, picking up where Brotherhood of the Wolf (1999) left off. Runelords take "endowments" of strength, wit, glamour, etc., from their subjects, turning them into superhuman beings but leaving their "dedicates" bereft of whatever quality they endowed. Gaborn, now the Earth King, must continue the battle against his rival and foe, the runelord Raj Ahten; and since Raj Ahten is Chosen, Gaborn as Earth king cannot slay him. Both realms are threatened by invading reavers, orc-like nonhumans, and their mages. Gaborn's hopes of defeating the reavers lies with young Averan, who has absorbed some of a reaver mage's powers, and the wise Earth mage Binnesman. Colorful, inventive magics, vigorous plotting, and gore aplenty—along with rather faceless characters and the usual nonending.