With all the excitement over the Combat Beta coming next week, it seems a little something that was highly promoted before got put back in the shadows. At least, from what I can tell so far.
Some of you already know that I've actually gone and purchased the first and second RuneScape novels by T.S. Church, more out of curiosity than interest. And if anyone's taken the time to speak to the various NPCs in game that were mentioned in the book, you'll hear a few tidbits about the squire-later-knighted Theodore Kassel and Kara-Meir, although some of the things they say seem to bode something not good...
The third novel to the series, Legacy of Blood, comes out on June 26th, the same day as the Combat Beta!!! (And yes, I did pre-order it on Amazon, and should be getting it on the day of release!) The majority of the rest of this post will be in hide tags so if you haven't read Betrayal at Falador and Return to Canifis, don't read the stuff in the hide tags!!!
[spoiler='Minor Spoilers]Betrayal at Falador starts us off on a dark stormy night in Falador, where Squire Theodore discovers Kara-Meir, who appeared very near the castle walls despite wards against teleporting to it thanks to the power of the Ring of Life. Granted, the Ring of Life doesn't do that in game (rather, it'd teleport us closer to the crossroads in Falador), but a bit of creative license is not harmful, and it gives some body to the story.
As we progress through the story, we meet Castimir--a young blue wizard in training from the Wizard's Tower south of Draynor, Ebenezer--an elder alchemist who some may call a heretic, Gar'rth--a young man Ebenezer had adopted and the nephew of Jerrod the werewolf, Arisha--the beautiful barbarian priestess, and Doric--yes, the very same Doric residing in the house just east of Taverley and north of Falador! Another character worth mentioning that you can speak to in-game for some possible hints from the novel is Sir Amik Varze. Together, these characters help to build the coming events of the Siege of Falador. You can see the damaged wall and ruins of the old ones along the north side of Falador.
If you're into RuneScape lore, this is definitely a nice way of reading into the lore of Falador. However, make sure to keep yourself a bit more flexible on certain things:
Adamant is considered to be quite powerful in game as seen in the characters' reactions to Kara-meir's sword, while runite extremely rare and is only mentioned being used to craft a very delicate piece of jewelry that Kara-meir repairs during her test to see if she would lead the dwarves to help save Falador. For those of us who haven't played Classic, adamant at one point was the strongest metal in RuneScape.
All in all, I enjoyed the character development, particularly Theodore's and Kara-meir's.
Return to Canifis lets us explore a bit more into Gar'rth's past, and some lore of Varrock and the dark lands of Morytania. We learn of the preparations made for the Dark Prince and his people to enter the kingdom of Misthalin, and the price that must be paid to learn of such dark secrets. We also get a view of Varrock's class-system, something not really seen in the game.
However, the character development made in Betrayal at Falador seems partly reversed in Return to Canifis, which irritated me in some respects, especially Kara-meir's. Still, it's not a terrible book, but I feel it didn't live up to it's prequel.
All in all, I hope Legacy of Blood turns out to be good. I expect we'll learn more about Gar'rth, and how the people in the kingdom of Misthalin prepare themselves for the undead armies to come...