Seven hundred years ago, a Black Widow witch saw an ancient prophecy come to life in her web of dreams and visions. Now, the Dark Kingdom readies itself for the arrival of its queen, a witch who will wield more power than even the High Lord of Hell himself. But she is still young, still open to influence - and corruption.
Whoever controls the queen controls the darkness. Three men - sworn enemies - know this. And they know the power that hides behind the blue eyes of an innocent young girl. And so begins a ruthless game of politics and intrigue, magic and betrayal, in which the weapons are hate and love - and the prize could be terrible beyond imagining.
©2007 Anne Bishop (P)2010 Penguin
"[H]er protagonists are compelling, sympathetic characters who overcome terrible adversity. If you like Anne Rice or Laurell K. Hamilton, try this one." (Amazon.com review)
"Lavishly sensual and overtly erotic, Bishop's fantasy debut features a richly detailed world based on a reversal of standard genre cliches of light and darkness." (Library Journal)
I finished this audiobook on vacation and the first thing I did when I got home was download the next book. I would probably own this book in hardback, and I would definitely read it again, either in print or Audio format. I always have a problem with males reading a lot of female parts, but that aside, the reader is very good. He drew me into the characters, giving them their own distinct voices. I could definitely tell which character was whom throughout.
The original trilogy long a favorite of mine finally becoming avalible in audio format! What a treat! The narrator captures the world perfectly as he did in the other books. I can't wait till the rest of the trilogy and Dreams made flesh comes available.
Don't get me wrong....I like a little edge. I'm a big fan of Lords of the Underworld, everything Jeaniene Frost has done and all of the Black Dagger Brotherhood....but this, I'm 4 1/2 hours in and castration along with disimbowelment is the entertainment of the evening! The story is complex, lots and lots of characters, I don't mind that. I understand any first book in a series often has lots of characters that become storylines later on, then it's fun to go back to the beginning and read again......but not this. I got pass the rats eating off a man's gentials early on...and thought well, that's rough but okay. I was wrong, that was nothing.
The story has some promise, which is a shame, because I really like a good story.
I have had many people recommend this book series to be for the last 7 or 8 years. All of them have nothing but good things to say about the book, however, I simply don't know what they see in it.
Apart from expecting us to care about characters we know nothing about, Anne expects us to believe that people often react to astounding situations by gasping for breath and nearly falling over. I lost count of the number of times this happened even for seemingly trivial news.
Most of the book centers around a character who has been a sex slave for most of his life. While this is regrettable, the character is nearly impossible to relate to because he is a despicable excuse for a protagonist. While it would be expected that a sex slave would harbor nothing but hatred for his masters, this man is exceptionally cruel to almost everyone he meets. In addition, this character is so powerful that he may as well just kill all the antagonists in the story and end the series here. He is a poorly written character and a rather glaring plot hole.
The end of the book is by far one of the worst parts. It did not leave me interested enough to continue the series. I came to the point where I did not care if the characters lived or died.
I've read so many fantasy series now, and with my long commute, that has moved towards listening instead of reading. In an audiobook, if the narration is bad, the audiobook is painful to go through... in this cause, the reader sounds juvenile. Instead of using a mysterious voice, Mr Sharian sounds like he is "trying" to be mysterious... not once did I get into a character with him. On top of that, the story was different than most, but that doesn't mean it was good. George RR Martin, Robin Hobb, Robert Jordan, Joe Abercrombie, Stephen R Donaldson... they know what they are doing for characters, and they all have excellent narrators. I wouldn't listen to this again if I was paid. Worst audiobook I've purchased so far.
It was not time well spent because it was not enjoyable and became rather annoying.
I won't be reading anymore books from this author.
It really isn't that this book is terrible, it's just so much monolog with so little actual activity. In some ways it's more like a subject matter book or text book because to me it's just chatter and inner monolog and chatter and drinking Yarbro and chatter.
For me when i started lisening I thought it was from the audible kids section then a little while later the auther very brefly hits you with something that could be taken two ways then a adult toy is talked about then a little farther along then its all nice and pritty images but then BAM! a child sex ring. but to continue i think the premise could be expanded WWWAAAAAYYYYYY more. it reminds me of a book were the auther has only barly figured out that you can have a other part of the story happening a long side what is happening else were. Then discribes a bit were so too the imaginitive mind they think "Awsome whats that!" then nothing more is sayed on the subject. I semi hate to say it but the book felt to me (a book lover) that this was a set of Cliff Notes of a giant epic tale... I would recomend "Sabriel" by Garth Nix insted but.. this is just my views on these books. so take this into consideration or not but all the same HAPPY READING!!
IF you love Twilight, you will probably like this.
I am not even half way through this book and I can already tell you this:
The characters are petulant and one sided. They are not lovable, hardly even likable.
The character names are horrid and not at all creative.
The world is not described at all. You pretty much have to guess as you are reading. It's as though the author knows the world so well, she forgot we don't. What a major oversight!
For me, this reads like a self important role play she tried to translate into a book. So far Terrible, do not read. I can't believe I am going to force myself to finish it. Too bad I can't return audio books.
--Note, I am not going to finish this book. It is tripe. I can't believe I am saying that, but I am.
(Note, I accidently put this on the second book, but I could not bring myself to read that book.)
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