Once the technology is out there its use cannot be controlled. This is a story of what could happen if commercial interest clash with the national interest. A gripping page turner that requires a minimum of suspension of belief. Definitely one of the best books I've read recently. I'll be reading more from this author.
In Kuldon, those with magical powers rule. Blaise, one of the most skilled sorcerers in the land, lives in self-imposed isolation. Ignoring the Sorcerers Council’s injunction forbidding its creation, Blaise has finally succeeded in manifesting an object which will allow peasants to use magic. But it’s not in the form he expected. Lying on the floor of his study is Gala, the naked embodiment of female physical perfection. Suppressing his curiosity about her abilities, Blaise yields to Gala’s desire to “live as a normal person”. Leaving her in the care of his friends Ester and Maya, he requests that they ensure Gala does not draw attention to herself. Gala’s physical beauty draws plenty of admiring male and envious female attention, but it is what happens when she is upset that makes it impossible for Ester and Maya to keep their promise to Blaise.
While the unpredictable manifestation of Gala’s powers and their unintended consequences is the central theme of this volume, there are several subplots giving context and depth to the story. Blaise’s ex-fiancée, Augusta, abhorrent of his creation, is torn between the Council’s rules and protecting Blaise. Augusta’s new lover, Barson, has ambitions that he needs Augusta’s influence to achieve. Ganir, leader of the Sorcerer’s Council and Blaise’s former mentor, manipulates Augusta and wants to use Blaise and Gala to further his own agenda. With chapter’s being named for and written from the point of view of particular characters, the reader is privy to their private motivations while simultaneously observing how their webs of deceit unwittingly entangle creating a catalyst for the unexpected.
The world of Kuldon, like many books in the fantasy genre, is a medieval feudal society. The peasant culture and circumstances are primarily used to highlight the disparate wealth and power of the ruling class of sorcerers. The battle scenes, in particular, are sufficiently graphic to feel credible without overdoing the realism.
In this volume, we meet the main players and discover portions of their individual and mutual histories. At this stage, no character’s personality traits or voice is clear enough to negate the need for named chapter headings. Perhaps future volumes will have greater scope more in depth of character development. Unexpectedly, the magic is a character in its own right. The ingenious way the sorcerers access their powers sets this story apart. Likewise, Gala’s abilities and her use of magic is novel.
As the first of a series, this book felt like it was simply laying a complex foundation for the real story to come. I found the melodramatic style of Emily Durante’s narration detracted significantly from the authors’ storytelling. I would have enjoyed it much more had I read the book. This epic has lots of potential yet to be realised. If you enjoy tales of magical powers set against a background of political intrigue and subterfuge, you will probably like this series.
This is a delightfully crafted tale about choices and their consequences. The simple decision to talk to a friend while he smoked a cigarette on school grounds results in a life altering event for Theo Decker. All subsequent decisions set the stage for less than savoury entanglements. The underlying theme is about which of the myriad obvious or subtle decisions Theo makes could have changed his life's course for the better.
Although this book is an extraordinarily long and, at times, dense with psychological detailed, at no time does the story get bogged down or seem to drag. This is the first Danna Tartt book I've 'read' but it definitely not be the last.
The excellent narration and characterisations added another level of my enjoyment of this story.
This is a well written suspenseful novel. I was engaged form the first page to the last. I will now seek out other books by this author.
The excellent character development made for engaging reading. Who do you trust when nothing is as it seems? John Rubinstein's narration added to the tension inherent in Jonathon Kellerman's story-telling style. I enjoyed this novel so much I can't wait to read more from this author.
Although it is a long and complex story I was hooked right from the start. Can't wait to read more by this author.
I wouldn't be averse to reading another book by Peter Clines. The narration was excellent.
I'd recommend it as a light read as long as they are willing to accept that ultimately credibily is stretched to breaking point
No particular favourite
I don't think a follow up book would be worthwhile as the plot conclusion lacked plausibility so if continued would be in danger of becoming ridiculous.
This story had great potential with some interesting and innovative twists. I was disappointed the solution to the "mystery" of Apartment 14 was so improbable.
It is up there with the best of them
Maybe not "on the edge of my seat" but I definitely cared about what would happen next. The story had enough mystery to have me hooked.
It is hard to choose a favorite but one that stands out as well written was one of the scenes between Sara Linton and Will Trent in Sara's living room. The under-current of sexual tension combined with their awkwardness rang with authenticity.
The slow reveal of the kidnapper's character combined with not understanding his motivation makes him memorable
As with all Karin Slaughter novels there are enough unexpected turns to keep the reader engaged without becoming frustrating or losing credibility.
I haven't read the print version so can't compare them. I did enjoy the audio version.
I enjoy the way Gabrielle Lord continues to round out Jemma's character by interweaving her personal story with her professional investigations.
Caroline Lee's narration was engaging throughout.
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