Although at first the imaginary world of this story seems like boilerplate stale fantasy, it grows increasingly complex and interesting. The story is not as easy to predict as you may think at first.
My biggest complaint is the 'voice'. The way the characters speak is generic. They could almost be American youth in the 1990s, not inhabitants of a mysterious world reminiscent of Europe during the Renaissance. The figurative language often made my eyes role.
The pacing also is uneven, as if the author lost focus, wandered down an irrelevant twisting path, then suddenly jumps sideways to return to the main road.
But still, I will listen to the sequel. It's a good story, and I want to see it through.
I love this series. Rothfest describes things in such a unique and capturing way. He draws you into the story at the beginning and leaves you hooked at the end.
Once I listened to this book and it's sequel, all other fantasy will seem dull in comparison. I've had many recommend Brandon Sanderson, who I find pretty much unreadable. I'm not really a fantasy devotee, but the fact that Brandon Sanderson is so popular is a mystery to me. The fact that this book and author is popular gives me hope for the genre.
The slow, melodic weaving of the story is masterful.
On top of the way stone with Denna
This is a great book! though the storyline may not be the most original, this is more than compensated by the exceptional writing and character development. As the book progresses, you come to alternate love, despise and sympathize with the different characters. I highly recommend it as one of the best fantasy books I have read in years!
Book: decent world building, great scene build up. The bad: kind of a slow burn. Not the most interesting story, certainly could use some more action and less description of unimportant things
Narration: solid, does multiple voices well