Shackled by Michael Wisehart
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Ferrin is an extraordinary blacksmith especially for his age. The reason for that is Ferrin has magical control over metal. The only problem is that he lives in a world where magic is outlawed. One night Ferrin's freedom is stolen from him when the Black Watch capture and shackle him. Ferrin bides his time waiting for the moment in which he can escape his captors.
Shackled was a strong short story. I quickly came to like Ferrin and I was enraged by the world as a whole. I tend to get easily invested in world's where people get abused in any way by something they have no control over. Ferrin and other wielders didn't ask for their magical gifts, but they are caged like animals regardless.
Shackled was also a great lead-in for the main story. It establishes the world from the wielders who hide their gifts to the White Tower where captured wielders are taken to be interrogated. The world in the story seems in many ways the typical older European setting, but the author puts his flourishes on the events taking place which make the story so intriguing.
Shackled was so good there is little chance I don't read the next book in the series.
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