After finishing the YA fantasy novel Graceling, Peter Brett's The Desert Spear was difficult to enter; the quasi-Islamic culture the first half of the novel centers on is jarrringly mysoginistic, so much so that it was difficult not to transfer those beliefs onto the author. It's a mistake easily corrected as the novel returns to Tibbet’s Brook, and to its satisfying story arc, following multiple characters in battles for worlds both human and hellish. Brett has a fine understanding of female characters, for antagonism between disparate cultures and the different sexes, and for regional dialogue. The more I read of Brett's demon-infested world, the more I enjoy it.
Finally, three things about Peter Brett's writing become clear in this novel: he loves the word succor; he loves, even more, the word ichor; he loves things dying by having their eyes poked out with sticks. This novel is the second part of a series begun with The Warded Man.