Review: Dragon Age: Those Who Speak by David Gaider

Dragon Age Those Who SpeakSource: Dark Horse/Netgalley – I received this book in exchange for an honest review. I received no compensation.
Series: Dragon Age #2
Publisher: Dark Horse
Edition: Egalley, 74 pages
Genre: Graphic Novel, Video Game Fantasy
Purchase: Amazon / Barnes & Noble / Book Depository*
*I receive a small monetary kickback from Amazon purchases
Rating: 4/5

In this canonical story from the lead writer of BioWare’s Dragon Age games, reluctant monarch King Alistair travels to an empire of evil mages.

Accompanied by the pirate captain Isabela and the underworld merchant Varric, Alistair will stop at nothing to uncover the fate of his lost father — even if it means battling an army of cultists singlehandedly!

The fight turns even more personal as Alistair faces a former ally and Isabela must confront the tragedies of her past while imprisoned in the cultists’ dungeon!

Bioware certainly knows how to add depth to their worlds and they have a way of feeding you the information so that you’re always hungry for more, which is exactly what David Gaider does with Those Who Speak.

Anyone familiar with the Dragon Age games immediately recognizes the names Alistair, Isabela and Varric; and though it does seem like a rather unlikely trio it works out perfectly. Alistair with his semi sarcastic/semi awkward humor, Isabela with both the street smarts and the fairly inappropriate quips, and Varris who is addicted to a good story and a good adventure. If you haven’t picked up The Silent Grove, I suggest you do so because Those Who Speak continues where that one left off.

This book mainly focuses on Isabela and it even uncovers some of her past for us. Alistair is on a mission to find out why his father was killed and unfortunately this leads them through contested waters, where they run into the Qunari. If you’ve played DA 2 then you know Isabela has a bit of a history with the Qunari and it’s none too pleasant, so this unfortunate run in with brings forth some interesting truths about our scantly clad pirate queen; like her real name, why she took the Tome that started the Kirkwall incident, and events that truly haunt her. This alone makes reading this worthwhile because while we know some thing about Isabela she’s pretty tight lipped on any serious subject and will divert with a witty quip on her sex life. Alistair and Varric are not really in this one too much but the parts that they are also pretty great, and they have an encounter with a familiar face from DA 1. Anyone remember Sten? The original Qunari who was incredibly quiet and also quick to say something rather impersonal, he was my least favorite of the group but it’s great to see him again. He still looks the same which I’m kind of happy about since redoing his physical appearance would have brought down the initial shock factor of seeing him again.  Also you get to see a female Qunari which is pretty awesome and she has some great scenes with Isabela.

Overall this has some great background info and it’s really cool that they are really pulling the two games together more. It doesn’t really progress the storyline as far as Alistair goes but it sets it up so that you know the next release will give you that much needed information. This is definitely a must for anyone who really loves the Dragon Age games and characters.

I received this in exchange for an honest review.

4 stars

This entry was posted in Book Reviews (2013) and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Review: Dragon Age: Those Who Speak by David Gaider

  1. I love unlikely trios who end up working. Glad you enjoyed.
    Happy reading,
    Brandi @ Blkosiner’s Book Blog

  2. I am not familiar with any of these, but it all sounds really interesting.

  3. This is new to me, it sounds really good and I am glad you enjoyed it!

  4. Vicky Hooper says:

    Ooh Isabela, Varric… and Alistair?! That is random, but I can see why it would work really well. They are all hilarious characters. Seems a bit weird that Alistair can go off galivanting with them when he’s the King – you’d think his advisors would send all kinds of bodyguards with him. I like the idea of finding out more about Isabela’s issues with the qunari.

    Might have to look out for this and give it a try 🙂

    Great review!

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