Mercedes Lackey is always a spell binding story teller and this book is no exception. This is the first book in her Gryphon trilogy.
Set in the world of Valdemar, but a thousand years before the other books of that series, this one presents a world that is full of magic as well as gifts.
A terrible war is raging as an evil wizard tries to conquer all the lands around him. Against him stands Urtho, the Mage of Silence, his human followers, and the magic creatures he has created, most notably the gryphons.
The book is told from the perspectives of Skan, the black gryphon of the title and Amberdrake, a human. They both make fascinating new friends.
The characters are alive and the plot is absorbing. I've seen some reviews that say this one is not up to Lackey's usual standard, but I don't agree. You will love this book.