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)
many characters, a bit confusing at times but i cared about the characters and am interested to see what happens in book 2.
John Sharian's voice
Loved his voice and how he made the characters come to life
This type of story is a little too dark for my own taste. Although I enjoyed the heart ranching longing of the main characters, the physical torture (ring of obedience) described is too cruel to be entertaining.
A different narrator would have made this spectacular for me.
I love this story, I've always loved this story. I own all of the books in the series in multiple formats. I love how detailed and well thought out all the characters and story lines are. There has been so much care put into creating a world that we can see, hear, and related to. These books are my go to when I'm not feeling well, or have had a bad week, or just want something comforting and familiar.
Maybe. I think that if I hadn't been as familiar with the books as I am, then I would not have had an issue with him. However, having read these books for years, and having my own preconceived notions of what the characters sound like, and how things are pronounced, I think that these books were not able to live up to my own reading of them.
The book itself always makes me happy. The characters are very familiar to me and remind me very strongly of people and situations around me. The narration of this book made me very unhappy because of how strongly it deviated from my own mental images of the book.
I definitely recommend these books to anybody with any kind of interest in fantasy and even romances. (And I detest romance books in general.)
What a great trilogy. I really love the action, the character development and the ability of Anne Bishop to paint a glorious picture that is so stimulating. I just can't wait to read the rest.
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.
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.
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