The Enemy Within

The Paladin Chronicles Book 6

Fiction - Fantasy - Epic
646 Pages
Reviewed on 03/08/2018
Buy on Amazon

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    Book Review

Reviewed by Ruffina Oserio for Readers' Favorite

What does it take to defeat an enemy who seems invincible and who is aided by his powerful daimôn lord? The answer that The Enemy Within, the sixth book in The Paladin Chronicles by Neil Port, offers may seem easy, familiar to some readers, but it is the complexity of its execution that makes it interesting.For the Elves to live in peace, the powerful Gansükh must be destroyed, but who can destroy him? Who can even get close to the man subjugating everyone to his rule, aided by his daimôn? The solution lies in a skilled assassin, disguised as a lover. Now within the walls of the enemy, will she succeed in maintaining the façade, seducing him and winning his trust while shielding her intent, and ultimately destroying the enemy from within? This is a powerful epic fantasy with an interesting premise.

The Enemy Within combines magic with intrigue and deceit to create a fascinating reading experience for fans of fantasy. I loved the assassin from the very moment I met her in the story, and found myself hoping against all hope that she would succeed in her mission, but the author knows the craft and how to build tension in the reader with cliffhangers and the deft handling of suspense. The characters are hugely believable and the setting a fascinating place with a culture that is unique. I enjoyed the way Neil Port handles the theme of power and its role in the conflict that is masterfully developed in this story. The Enemy Within is gripping and each scene is crafted to ignite new levels in interest in readers, keeping them focused on learning what happens in the end. The tension builds up strongly and escalates to a satisfying climax.

Divine Zape

The Enemy Within is the sixth book in The Paladin Chronicles by Neil Port, a fascinating blend of an epic tale of fantasy with intrigue. Gansükh rules Āzar Pāyegān; a very dangerous man who has remained a great threat to the elves, even after the deadly war of Illvaettir, because he can still summon his daimôn lord any time. Nothing can beat him and he has everyone in his grip. For the elves to live a normal life, Gansükh must be defeated, but how can he be defeated when he has his influence in the very places that could have offered security to these people? But there is a way — only one way —to take down the invincible Gansükh, and it must be done from within and with the best cunning. Hence, a special assassin must fall in love with him, make him believe in her, and then destroy him from within. But can she survive the evil of this man and can she succeed in this perilous mission and come out with her soul unsullied?

There is a kind of sensuality in the language of The Enemy Within that results from the author’s vivid imagination which encapsulates his diction — even the naming of things and people and places. There is a unique culture and setting that suggests originality, and sheer beauty of the characters. Even the evil one is designed to create a powerful effect on readers and balance the development of conflict. Neil Port’s characters are well-written so that readers will genuinely hate the villain of the story, and share a strong sense of empathy with the protagonist. The plot is sophisticated and it is built around a compelling conflict. Once again, readers get into the arena to witness the duel between good and evil, and this time from a fresh and unique perspective.

Christian Sia

The Enemy Within, Book 6 in The Paladin Chronicles by Neil Port, is a riveting read, and even though I haven’t read the previous books in this series, it wasn’t difficult to get into the story, thanks to the author’s deft handling of backstory and plot lines. Readers are thrust into a very exciting setting, a world just recovering from a deadly war (The Illvaettir War), but what threatens the world of the elves and their allies is something even more dangerous than the war. The elves are still threatened by Gansükh, the merciless ruler of Āzar Pāyegān. This evil ruler can’t be killed and he can’t be stopped because he has the power to summon his daimôn. To be able to defeat him, the elves must infiltrate his ranks and take him by surprise, which is why a skilled and beautiful assassin is sent on a mission to seduce Gansükh and finally kill him. Can she be the hope of the elves and their allies?

This is an epic fantasy tale that is so well plotted and with a colorful setting. Readers will love the magic and the game of power masterfully developed in the narrative. The conflict is phenomenal and it offers great images that readers would love to see as a movie. Neil Port has created a world where readers can experience the chills, and feel like they are being watched, a story with strong and relatable characters, a fascinating world where people survive through intrigue and warfare. I love the writing, especially its evocative tone, the skillful plot handling, and the gems buried in this story in the form of suspense, intrigue, and intense action. The Enemy Within has made me want to read everything Neil Port writes.