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The Warded Man | [Peter V. Brett]

The Warded Man

Peter V. Brett has won accolades from critics, fans and fellow authors alike for this riveting debut novel. The Warded Man features a world where demons stalk the night, hunting humans who have long forgotten the magic of their ancestors. But all is not lost, as some hold out hope that a savior will release humanity from the demons' terrifying reign.
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Publisher's Summary

Peter V. Brett has won accolades from critics, fans and fellow authors alike for this riveting debut novel. The Warded Man features a world where demons stalk the night, hunting humans who have long forgotten the magic of their ancestors. But all is not lost, as some hold out hope that a savior will release humanity from the demons' terrifying reign.

©2009 Peter V. Brett; (P)2009 Recorded Books, LLC

What the Critics Say

"Brilliant, with action and suspense all the way." (Best-selling author, Terry Brooks)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.4 (4254 )
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  •  
    Meloney kalamazoo, MI, USA 12-18-09
    Meloney kalamazoo, MI, USA 12-18-09 Member Since 2009

    Say something about yourself!

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Brilliant"

    The novel is amazing granted a few things, first the character set up is at least 35-40% of this story. The writer does a great job showing their development vs telling it via reflection, you can see the characters growing. Secondly, this book is intended to be one of several, because of that there seems to be a lot of minor loose ends. All of that aside, I think the novel was amazing. Very well thought out, structured and executed. Amazing character development and over all interesting. It kept my attention from the very beginning. Now for the narration, originally I thought Pete Bradbury was going to be too dry to endure. Surprisingly this novel suits him allowing him to show case his control over his voice. However, there are few times where knowing who is speaking can become problem. Overall, the novel is very pleasing and highly suggested.

    64 of 66 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ryan Somerville, MA, United States 09-07-10
    Ryan Somerville, MA, United States 09-07-10 Member Since 2005

    Gen-Xer, software engineer, and lifelong avid reader. Soft spots for sci-fi, fantasy, and history, but I'll read anything good.

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    "entertaining escapism"

    If you're looking for entertaining, competently-written escapist fantasy, you could do worse than the Warded Man. As might be expected in a book where bestial demons rise out of the ground every night to terrorize human beings protected by fragile magic wards, there's not a whole lot of subtlety to either the characters or the writing, but I found the story engrossing nonetheless. Brett confidently draws the reader into the fine details of his three protagonists' lives, gradually adding twists and internal conflicts as they grow from childhood, and I found myself staying awake "just one more chapter". The world reminded me a bit of Stephen King's The Wizard and the Glass, with its part medieval, part Wild West, and part post-apocalypse setting, though the mix here leans more towards the former.

    Yeah, the book has its flaws. The prose can be adverb-heavy, the side characters are a little exaggerated, and the demons themselves have all the personality of monsters from the computer game DOOM. (On a side note, some readers have also complained about the rape scenes, but I didn't find the author's choice to include them objectionable -- I thought they fit in with the harshness of the novel's world.)

    But, overall, I found The Warded Man an enjoyable read and got sucked into the book's world. I liked the conflicted central characters and the portrayal of human society in uneasy coexistence with an ever-present (if mindless) supernatural threat. Usually, I don't mention the audiobook experience, but, in this case, the narrator, whose voice was perfect for this kind of tale, probably added something. Give it a shot. I immediately downloaded the sequel upon finishing.

    25 of 26 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Barbara 02-25-10
    Barbara 02-25-10 Member Since 2012
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    "Shocked"

    I didn't think I was going to like this book as much as I now do. I'm a gamer, I download audiobooks to pass my time in games with a lil background entertainment. This book was so good, it made me stop gaming, log off and I just listen. It's not in the least bit scarey so I don't know what it's doing listed under horror. Reguardless, the story was Very entertaining. The narrator did a pretty good job with voices. He didn't do those high pitched, annoying sounding "female" voices. I related to all the characters, even the minor ones and I actually cared what happend to them. There's only one not believable part concerning the main female character in the woods. But other than that, I highly recommend this story. There's a sequil comming out that I will deffinitly buy. It's Very rare that I rave about a book, so trust me on this one. Get it.

    60 of 66 people found this review helpful
  •  
    David Houston, TX, United States 11-04-11
    David Houston, TX, United States 11-04-11 Member Since 2008

    Actor/director/teacher. Split my time between Beijing and Seattle now. Listen to Audible on the subway and while driving or riding my bike.

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    "It is hard to keep this much disbelief suspended"

    Brett builds characters extremely well. He spends the entirety of "The Warded Man" developing fascinating personal histories for the three who will, presumably, be the prime movers in the action of the rest of the story. Their journeys are tortuous, often surprising and quite satisfying. By the end we know them intimately so that their every action is rooted in convincing personal history.

    Unfortunately I did not find myself nearly so convinced of the reality of the world in which the author places his wonderful players. We are asked to believe that no one in this civilization has ever conceived of the most obvious responses to the plague of demons which terrorizes them. As a result, the whole structure of the story is weakened as we ask ourselves "why don't they just...." Of course they DO eventually "just...." But by asking us to assume a complete lack of imagination and initiative on the part of the entire population of the book, Brett immeasurably weakens his story and renders his marvelously drawn central characters slightly ridiculous.

    The most important central conflict Brett paints in this book is between the people and their own immobilizing fear. At some moments that comes through clearly and powerfully, but fear and simple stupidity are two entirely different things.

    41 of 47 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Derek B. A strange midwestern city, United States 01-21-10
    Derek B. A strange midwestern city, United States 01-21-10 Member Since 2015

    It's simple really, I am just a guy looking to enjoy the writing and reading talents of others while raising my family the best I can, just Like most everyone else!!!

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Where did this great story come from?"

    Why does a great story like this have to be found on accident? How come this book is not being advertised? This is as great as any fiction I have read! The next one is soon to be out as well! If You mix the best of King with the best of Gaiman and combine the best of Koontz as well then it will be something like this!!!!

    49 of 57 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mike Naka 12-17-12
    Mike Naka 12-17-12 Member Since 2012

    Avid Zombie fan who's starting to listen to more and more Fantasy and Sci-Fi stories. So, my description is apt to change. Dog lover who's known to have cats. LOL C# coder, part-time prepper, B movie fan, AMC watcher, recovering but successful day trader, perpetual student, overjoyed uncle, former adrenaline junkie with a flare for cooking, and lots more. LOL

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    "refreshing fantasy for a non-fantasy reader"
    Any additional comments?

    i usually don't read/listen to a lot of epic fantasy, but this book has kind of changed my mind. i tend to gravitate to quick, action packed books, but those stories usually have one dimensional characters. so...looking for a change of pace, i searched for a highly rated book and ended up choosing this one. and boy did i hit the lottery!

    at first, i regretted my decision b/c i thought, "oh, here we go again! another slow epic fantasy story." i had a slow weekend so i decided to stay with, and i am so glad b/c i was totally rewarded. before it ended, i had already downloaded the 2nd book, the desert spear.

    the story opens with arlen who lives in a small town. life is hard. days are full of hard labor, but nights are worse. when te sun goes down, the corelings (demons) arise tormenting, killing, and eating anyone caught outside. the only protection comes from wards. people ave to draw/carve wards on their houses to create a barrier to kkeep the demons out. the humans are reduced to hiding behind their wards b/c regular weapons can't hurt the demons. so every night, arlen has to hide with his family as the fire, wood, and rock demons stalk their houses looking for holes in the wards.

    the only excitement is when messengers and joglers come through towns. messengers bravely travel the roads delivering news, letters, and goods. joglers provide entertainment by dancing, telling stories, playing music, etc...

    arlen's mom gets trapped outside as the sun goes down and ries to rescue her. arlen's father is too scared to help arlen, and arlen's mother is killed by a fire demon. arlen is disgusted by his father's cowardice and decides to run away. he tries to catch up to the messenger that just left his town but darkness falls before he can. he survives by drawing wards in the dirt. so starts arlen's story as he heads to the big city to learn how to become a messenger.

    there are two other character's wwhose stories also get told. leesha and rojer. leesha and rojer also live in small towns. rojer's family is killed when their wards fail. only him and the drunk jongler survive. so, the jongler takes rojer with him to the city and raisres him. leesha is a young girl who is expected to be married and start having kids. people are constantly getting killed so girls are expected to marry and start having kids as soon as they have their period. yes, life is bleak. people hope the deliverer will return to show them how to fight against the corelings.

    the first few hours are kind of slow, building the world and introducing the characters. after the initial stories are set up, the story seems to move faster as we see the characters start to develop. these 3 characters walk different paths, but my excitement keep building, waiting for their paths to cross. by that time, i was totally engrossed and had already downloaded book 2.

    wow...what a ride! i enjoyed listening to the characters grow from being powerless, rejected, and dejected into confident, respected, and hopeful people determined to fight for their place in the world and willing to their fight the corelings.

    definitely give this a try! hang in there, and you'll be rewarded with a great story.

    11 of 13 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rush BENBROOK, TX, United States 09-21-12
    Rush BENBROOK, TX, United States 09-21-12 Member Since 2013
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    "Surprised me and pulled me in against my will."

    I was looking for more of a contemporary, post-apocalyptic fantasy book when I came across this novel. The synopsis was very intriguing and the narration in the sample wasn't bad, so I picked it up despite it not being what I was looking for. I expected to not make it very far in, as I tend to give up on books quickly if the first chapter can't hold my attention. I thought the demons would feel hokey and put me off to the rest of the story. Surprisingly, I found myself unable to put it down. The characters and world are well-detailed and quite engrossing. The narration is good as well. I liked it so much that once I was done with it instantly had to pick up the sequel, The Desert Spear.

    11 of 13 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Thomas 05-09-10
    Thomas 05-09-10
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    "Good Fantasy Read"

    Nice plot, with good characters, and I like the new premise of a "warded" man. Has a good history that should create an easily developed back story as the series continues.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Devin 05-27-12
    Devin 05-27-12

    Avid listener of Scifi and Fantasy. I've found so many great books with the help of member reviews. Hopefully I can return the favor.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Wow this is a Great Listen"

    If you're a fan of modern fantasy you need to get this book. This tale follows a young farm boy Arlen, as he grows up in a brutal world tormented by demons who rule the night. The people of this world struggle to use every last minute of daylight before fleeing nightly to the safe haven of magical wards. Mr. Brett has created a vivid and deep world that's both touching and terrifying.

    The perils of night and relative safety of day add a tension to this world that shapes the lives and culture of all it's inhabitants. For as long as anyone can remember families have huddled fearfully in their homes listening to the screams of demons, or worse, the screams of those caught out in the night as the demons rise from the earth. There are tales of days long ago when people knew of killing wards that could allow humans to retake the night, but these wards have long been lost to time. Some day they say the deliverer will come to teach people of the long forgotten wards and lead them to regain the night, but there is little hope in these old stories.

    If any of that sounds interesting, you won't be disappointed. Not only is this an exciting book full of action, but the author also explores in detail the effects this existence would have on it's inhabitants. The many characters in this book are all unique and well developed, and you grow to love most of them. There is a true sense of empathy with each person in this story. Even when you hate a character you can understand how they got to that point.

    Don't waste any more time reading reviews and download this now.

    **One warning, there are some graphic scenes of violence and sexual abuse in this series. If you're a prude or are easily offended you might want to stay away.**

    Highly Recommended!!

    10 of 12 people found this review helpful
  •  
    R. Kot New York 04-27-10
    R. Kot New York 04-27-10 Member Since 2006
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    "Outstanding"

    Without question, one of the finest and most original books I have ever read.

    This book was purchased on a whim and now I cannot wait until the next book. The originality of the world and the Corelings, as well as the marvelous character development make this a must read for anyone who enjoys Steven King et al.

    10 of 12 people found this review helpful

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