Fed up with his desk duty in the Imperial Arcane Library, book hunter Colin Bliss accepts a private commission to find The Sword's Shadow, a legendary and dangerous witches' grimoire. But to find the book, Colin must travel to the remote Western Isles and solve a centuries' old murder.
Please note: This book contains gay erotic content.
©2012 Josh Lanyon (P)2012 Josh Lanyon
I should state here, that I am not usually into fantasy and other worlds. What I liked best about this story was the fact that it was a mystery within the fantasy and I could follow both the story in the fantasy world and the mystery.
Colin Bliss because he was the hero of the story and Septimous Marx the love interest. Both are interesting characters and fun to read about.
As I have said, I am really not that into fantasy, but Max Miller's rendition of the story was wonderful. His words flowed so well and I felt he knew the characters and represented them very well. When I first read the book, I got a little lost in all of the "other world" stuff. Max Miller makes it real. You feel you are in the world with Colin and Marx.
Fantasy, gay mystery.
I thoroughly enjoyed this presentation and hope to listen to more of Max Miller and Josh Lanyon presentations.
Pretty much at the top.
Atmospheric, gothic and just a touch of the Lovecraftian horror, plus the dry, intriguing alternative-history fantasy world and the acerbic sarcasm of the narrator make this a one-time experience.
I was very pleased with Max's ability with the voice of the narrator: sophisticated, academic, young and wonderfully sarcastic. Then he did other characters, and I thought for a moment that I was listening to a radio play with multiple voice actors rather than just one talented man. Holy crap -- his accents are spot on, he gaelic sounds spot-on and he can sing, to boot!
This type of story (fantasy) is, admittedly not my favorite genre, but Max Miller speaking Josh Lanyon's words makes all the difference in the world.
I liked Colin Bliss's journey into self-awareness.
This is my second Max Miller audio. This one excels over the other I heard.
I chuckled in some parts and got choked up in others. Colin Bliss has become one of my favorite Josh Lanyon characters.
I really really enjoyed this book and wish it were a longer series. It's a nice divergence from the typical murder mystery Lanyon usually writes.
I enjoyed the mystical/fantasy elements to the story as well as the early 20th century feel to the environment. The chemistry between the two leads was really well done and I hope there's more of these two to come at some point.
The narrator took a while for me to get used to and there seemed to be some audio issues where it'll go from whisper quiet to a much louder voice which you can tell is when the narrator stopped/started recording but after all is said and done I really did like his tone and his voices for everyone.
More than any other Lanyon story I find myself REALLY wanting to listen to/read this one again. Which I plan to do soon as I finish the book I'm reading right now.
There are 69 books in my library right now. I can never buy another book. :(
The romance. It felt rushed and weird as hell. I didn't feel like they really had a relationship, and maybe I should have paid closer attention to the blurb because I didn't guess who his love interest was, and when it started I was really surprised and thrown for a loop. I mean, his boyfriend is an asshole for most of the book so I just couldn't see them actually being in love.
Haha, I actually have and his voice cracks me up; I like him but he's definitely not my favorite. I probably will try to avoid buying more audiobooks with him as the narrator. I don't know, I keep changing my mind about whether I actually like his voice or not.
Haha, no. That would be awkward as hell.
I liked the main character, but other than that I found the plot confusing, and the romance awful. I'm not sure if it is because listening rather than reading this book caused me to get really confused about the weird book backstory, but I'm not even really sure what was going on half the time. Probably I won't read it again.
Miller is BRILLIANT when it comes to accents and distinguishing character voices, but otherwise he seems to have a quiet, tight-lipped style of narration that I found infuriating. Were it not for the fact that his words are intelligible and distinguishable, I would characterize his narration as "mumbling."
Perhaps this was done intentionally to add to the clandestine and 'mysterious' nature of the story, but I found it frustrating that I had to set my device to the maximum volume setting and, even then, often have to listen strenuously just to understand what was being said.
The story seems to take place in a demi-alternate universe where magic and witchcraft are common and mainstream concepts and practices. If you are interested in a mystery novella in a somewhat alternate universe involving literary recovery, the occult, and some shallow, underdeveloped m/m romance, 'The Darkling Thrush' is for you. If, after you read the synopsis, you are expecting a mystery/romance set in your present reality, alter your expectations of the story's setting, and prepare yourself for more-than-wanting audio/narration quality, and you may be prepared for an enjoyable listen. Otherwise, give this title a pass.
In this alternate reality, for certain people, books can tell the secrets of who has read, owned, and written them. Collin Bliss is one of the people who knows what books have to say. As a book hunter, he expects to have a year of field work in England when he accepts an exchange position with the Museum of the Literary Occult. Unfortunately, he's stuck behind a desk all day. Given the chance to use his talent, he takes a side job that the Museum would rather he didn't. Septimus Marx is challenged with stopping Collin from finding the book he seeks, by means fair or foul. Can love find it's way, can events be changed so that the world doesn't end?
.....................Of course, but it's a close thing.
Yes. I loved the blending of modern and magic. The whole story was well written, and the narrator was good.
Colin Bliss, the main character. He's thrown into an awkward situation with an ex lover, when he's far away from home, and he makes rash decisions.
There are a few sex scenes in it, but not every 10 minutes, like some other books. Also, there is one little aspect that I wish they has wrapped up a little more, but it's not dire to the plot, so it doesn't bother me too much.
I have most of JL's books, in multiple formatsAs for the narrator, probably, I had some issues with two of the voices in this book, but the rest was good, they did ruin my enjoyment a bit though as I got dragged out of the story when they happened
Ummm, no idea
It wasn't bad, just not my thing, vocal wise
Read the ebook
It took me a little bit to get used to the narrator's voice, but trust me, stick with it because it wasn't too long before I could hardly bear to step away from the story, and I credit Mr Miller's narration for a good part of that. He doesn't rush through the reading of a story, and I'm a fast reader, so that was one of the things I had to get used to. But once I settled in and let him take me on the story's journey, I realized how much of the detail and nuances of the story I'd missed from my fast reading of the ebook version. He has a talent for voices, and each character has a defined 'voice' that makes the listening experience very full and rich.
I have also listened to Max Miller's narration of The Ghost Wore Yellow Socks. And while that narration was very good, this one was even better.
This was the first of Josh Lanyon's fantasy stories I'd read. I'll admit I wasn't sure if I'd like it as much as his contemporaries. I should never have doubted. His storytelling mastery crosses all genres. A fantastic story!
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