Short Story Review: “The Wood Boy”

“The Wood Boy”
The Riftwar Saga series
By Raymond E. Feist
Collected in Legends
Edited by Robert Silverberg

While war rocks the planet of Midkemia, a young boy wanders into a camp of soldiers pulling a sled laden with two bodies. He introduces himself as Dirk, and tells the story of a Tsurani invasion at the estate of Lord Paul of White Hill. Lord Paul orders his servants to make no resistance to the invaders, and at first everything seems to run smoothly.

After several months of Tsurani occupation, the servants at Lord Paul’s estates begin to get uneasy. The best food and shelter goes to the Tsurani, and even Lord Paul’s daughter is heard to complain. One night, Dirk is awakened by a strange sound, like a muffled cry. Just as he is beginning to fall back asleep, he is attacked in the dark. He falls from the hay door of the barn and is knocked unconscious by a body landing on top of him.

When Dirk awakens, he discovers the entire human population has been murdered in their sleep. Evading the Tsurani soldiers, he sets off after the murderer.

I have not read any books from the Riftwar Saga before now, but based on this story it seems to be a sort of cross between Science Fiction and Fantasy. I really enjoyed “The Wood Boy” and would recommend this story to fans of both fantasy and action adventure science fiction.

This review originally appeared 15 December 2012 on

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