The Left Hand of God is a stunning first installment in a remarkable epic trilogy...
"Listen. The Sanctuary of the Redeemers on Shotover Scarp is named after a damned lie for there is no redemption that goes on there and less sanctuary."
The Sanctuary of the Redeemers is a vast and desolate place - a place without joy or hope. Most of its occupants were taken there as boys and for years have endured the brutal regime of the Lord Redeemers whose cruelty and violence have one singular purpose - to serve in the name of the One True Faith.
In one of the Sanctuary's vast and twisting maze of corridors stands a boy. He is perhaps fourteen or fifteen years old - he is not sure and neither is anyone else. He has long-forgotten his real name, but now they call him Thomas Cale. He is strange and secretive, witty and charming, violent and profoundly bloody-minded. He is so used to the cruelty that he seems immune, but soon he will open the wrong door at the wrong time and witness an act so terrible that he will have to leave this place, or die.
His only hope of survival is to escape across the arid Scablands to Memphis, a city the opposite of the Sanctuary in every way: breathtakingly beautiful, infinitely Godless, and deeply corrupt.
But the Redeemers want Cale back at any price... not because of the secret he now knows but because of a much more terrifying secret he does not.
©2010 Paul Hoffman; (P)2010 Penguin Audiobooks Ltd
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I'm not normally drawn to fantasy books with the exception of the odd Terry Pratchett but I was riveted by this story.
I liked the hero's no nonsense approach to violence.
I'm looking forward to further instalments.
"The Left Hand of God"
Magnificent, the story, prose and narration are perfect. will be the first to buy part two.
"Engrossing but not exactly light hearted."
I genuinely enjoyed this book. It is not for the faint hearted, the Sanctuary of the Redeemers is not somewhere you'd want to take the kids for a day out. This book is consistently grim, it doesn't let up on the oppression of its subjects for a moment. But it has real appeal, a dark fascination that draws you in to the finely detailed setting inexorably. Well written, well narrated, well worth your time!
I don't do spoilers or plot summaries so all I will tell you is that I really enjoyed all 3 books in this trilogy the subject is familiar but turned upside down and inside out :)
Sean Barrett is an excellent narrator and in these books (as he always does) he puts the flesh onto the bones of the characters.
If you like fantasy with an edge as opposed to unicorns and castles then this is certainly well worth a read...
A strange, complex book.
Imagine a precocious child assassin, raised in a Catholic replica church, devoid of anything of childhood - no gentleness, no love, no security, no tenderness.
Thomas Cale is a one man / child catastrophe. It's impossible to love the character but easy to pity him. Everything he does to break away from the appalling plans his mentor has for him goes wrong. Even so, you can't help rooting for him.
The narrator isn't brilliant - sometimes Thomas sounds like a whiny brat. Mind you, that's what he is. He has a wonderfully stentorious voice for all the heavy lifting.
"Cries out to be made into a film"
I read all three parts before commenting so as to see the story through to the end. Okay, the trilogy is not "great literature", but it is a story which draws you in and keeps you there. There are patches which are too drawn out and sometimes the story takes it's time to get where it is going, but it is so worth the effort. Thomas Cale will stay with me for a long time, and I'll come back and listen to these again. The burning question for me is - when will producers wake up to this trilogy and make films of them. These books are a far better source material than many poorer stories which have been made into films costing mega-bucks. Finally a word about the narration. 10 out 10 for Sean Barratt. He captured all the characters well without being over the top in his characterisations, but most of all he totally nailed Thomas Cale's personality. I hope Hoffman will tempted to write a follow-on.
"When is his next book out!!"
Oddly enough the hero of this book is not Thomas Cale, the primary protagonist, but the narrator, performed by the wonderfully dry Sean Barret. His whimsical observations and insights into human nature are far more entertaining than the actions undertaken by the viscious and nasty Cale. In fact, his commentary on the events is so delightful that it makes this series one of the very best that I have ever read! I have never written a review before, thinking that giving a five star rating on audible.co.uk was enough praise; today I make an exception.
"Amazing Story, it grips you from begining to end!"
Dark, chilling, and amazing. The story took over every spare moment I had, utterly brilliant.
great story very well narrated had me transfixed from the start well worth a listen cant wait for the next installment.
"A must listen"
This is a fantastic story, brilliantly narrated. It's the perfect audible experience. Sean Barrett is a master story teller and really brings this book to life.
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