Picked this up cheap at a thrift store, thought it might be interesting - a thriller from a guy known for sword-and-sorcery. No such luck - Goodkind's apparently a one-trick pony, as this book is completely tied to the Sword of Truth series (and honestly, I suspect a good deal of it wouldn't make sense unless one has already read at least some of those books.) Some of the writing is so bad I think they must have forgotten to assign him an editor, or even someone to proof it. Don't bother - especially since, although this story is pretty well wrapped up by the end of the book, it's wide open for sequels. And if Goodkind's consistent, we're talking many, many sequels.