Shapers of Darkness

Book Four of Winds of the Forelands

Winds of the Forelands (Volume 4)

David B. Coe

Tor Books

The Forelands are at war. The magic-wielding Qirsi and their Eandi masters have mobilized their forces. The Eandi have had to look beyond past differences to make alliances for the sake of the future, praying it isn’t too late for them to change the outcome of the war. Tavis, an Eandi prince who was framed for murdering the princess to whom he was pledged, and endured torture before winning his freedom, has at last avenged her death.  Still, the murder and its aftermath have brought war to the Forelands just as the Qirsi conspirators who bought his love's blood had intended.  Now Tavis and Grinsa, a Qirsi shaper with more powers than he reveals, who saved Tavis when nobody else would believe his innocence, venture across the Forelands, risking death to help save the land they love . . .

A powerful Qirsi weaver has brought this terrible war to the land, bending the minds of those he controls and of his enemies in an effort to forge alliances and mobilize forces to destroy the Eandi. His powerful magical ability estranges lovers, betrays leaders, and wreaks murder and death throughout the land. But even with his powerfully malign intelligence, he underestimates the mettle of his opponents. In a psychological duel with Grinsa, the Weaver’s formidable powers are sorely tested. Grinsa withstands the Weaver’s most powerful attacks at nearly the expense of his own life, and in the process discovers the Weaver’s identity.

Will Grinsa’s challenge to the Weaver spell the end of the Weaver’s reign of doom? Or has Grinsa’s discovery come too late to help the Eandi cause? The answers lie in the growing war that may sunder the Forelands forever.

At the publisher's request, this title is being sold without Digital Rights Management software (DRM) applied.


Read an Excerpt

Chapter One

Curtell, Braedon, year 880, Amon's Moon waning

What did it mean to be a god? Was it simply immortality that separated the great ones from those who lived on Elined's earth? Was it their power to bend others to their will, their ability to shape the future and remake the world as they desired? Did he not possess those powers as well? Had he not made himself a god?

Victory would soon be his, and with his triumph would a come a new world, one that he had foreseen, a world of his own making. Was that not the highest power? He could not cheat death---Bian would call


Praise for Shapers of Darkness

“Coe writes a wonderfully complex and engrossing tale, but what truly made this book for me was the richness and depth of the beautifully crafted characters. A good plot makes for a great read, but interweave that plot with rich, complex characters and you have a splendid book--and this is a splendid book. There is absolutely nothing superficial about Coe's writing--it is strong, complex, and emotionally very, very powerful.”
--Sara Douglass on Bonds of Vengeance

"Coe's world is much more intricate than that of most similar fantasy writers, and he seems to have a deeper grasp than most of the complexities of interhuman relationships."
--Science Fiction Chronicle on Seeds of Betrayal

“Turmoil and deception propel Coe’s second entry in his Winds of the Forelands tetralogy, maintaining the momentum of its predecessor, Rules of Ascension (2002). The author deftly manages a multistrand plot full of political intrigue that never flags despite the wealth of engrossing detail. A large cast of characters both old and new enliven the sword and sorcery. Readers who go for good clean fantasy fun will eagerly await the next installment.”
--Publishers Weekly on Seeds of Betrayal

"Mesmerizing, highly readable fantasy for teens waiting for the next Tolkien movie."
--Booklist on Seeds of Betrayal

"War and politics, love and magic, all drawn in detail against a vividly imagined feudal background. A complex and excellent book."
--David Drake, author of Lord of the Isles

"This sword and sorcery epic from Coe gathers momentum like a runaway moving van.... After this impressive opening volume, one can only hope Coe will keep up the high standard in the remainder of a projected four-book series."
--Publishers Weekly on Rules of Ascension

Reviews from Goodreads



  • David B. Coe

  • David B. Coe grew up just outside New York City, the youngest of four children. He attended Brown University as an undergraduate and later received a Ph.D. in history from Stanford. Coe is currently working on volume five of Winds of the Forelands, which began with Rules of Ascension, and continued with Seeds of Betrayal, and will conclude with Weavers of War. Coe is the winner of the William L. Crawford Award for Best First Fantasy or Fantasy Series, awarded at the International Conference on the Fantastic for the first two novels of his LonTobyn Chronicle trilogy. He lives in Sewanee, Tennessee.
  • David B. Coe Christian H. Cutler
    David B. Coe





    Available Formats and Book Details

    Shapers of Darkness

    Book Four of Winds of the Forelands

    Winds of the Forelands

    David B. Coe

    Lambda Literary Award - Nominee
    • e-Book



    Tor Books