Best-selling author Michael J. Sullivan’s mesmerizing Riyria Revelations series has found a welcome home with fans of magic, clashing swords, and daring heroes. This second volume finds Royce and Hadrian on a quest to enlist the southern Nationalists to aid the ever-weakening kingdom of Melengar. Royce suspects an ancient wizard is manipulating them all, but to find the truth he’ll have to decipher Hadrian’s past—a past Hadrian wants to keep secret.
Rise of Empire contains Nyphron Rising and The Emerald Storm, books 3 and 4 of Riyria Revelations.
©2011 Michael J. Sullivan (P)2012 Recorded Books
This book picks up after a year or so after the end of first book where Church has found a lost leader and started to form an Empire.
Our combo of elvish assassin and burly fighter find themselves working for the king of Melengar as spies that book start to focus a lot more on the politics and intrigue. I enjoyed this portion of the book that author does not let the narrative get dull with endless chatter. Some of the characters are cunning yet funny.
Scope of the story is larger, and yet book almost manage to move as fast as the previous book (though there were few moments which I thought were kind of a drag).
Author provides a lot more depth to the characters of Royce and Hadrian. Back stories of Royce and Hadrian is been flushed out which is masterfully integral to the over all story.
There are twists in this book which caught me by surprised. Arista's development as person and as an practitioner of the 'art' continues, and it is a fun ride.
Sense of humor between two thieves is still fresh and fun.
Narrator did a great job, and book is really a fun listen. This audio series is turning into one of my favorite. This book has setup nicely for the last in series for which I cant wait!
I highly recommend this book and series.
This is my favorite new series. It has great characters the story is fast moving and has the depth that I look for. Truly a great read. I have recommended it to all my family and friends.
Royce was my favorite character because his dry humor reminded me of my father.
He is a great performer. I think he really gets a great feel for the characters before he even starts his work. I don't believe that I could honestly choose.
Although Volume 2 of the Ryria Revelations contains two books, Nyphron Rising and The Emerald Storm, I still felt how I usually feel after reading the middle book of a good trilogy - unsatisfied with how things are left off and ready for more.
Royce and Hadrian continue their adventures and do some digging into their pasts, while Arista sets off on her own and faces some serious challenges. Each of the characters is flushed out some and the bigger picture continues to come into focus. For me, The Emerald Storm was a bit of a tangent and did not advance the main storyline as much as I would have hoped, but any story involving Royce and Hadrian is entertaining so I'm not complaining.
Tim Gerard Reynolds does his normal excellent job bringing the characters to life and at this point I could not imagine anyone else voicing them. So if you enjoyed Volume 1 there is no reason to hesitate on picking this one up, just keep in mind that the story doesn't end here and you will have to pick up Volume 3 as well.
If anyone could transition this to tv without mucking around with it to make everybody in love with everybody else, or whatever idiot changes they always seem to make when adapting somebody else's work, this series would make for fabulous television.
Royce and Hadrian, the main characters, have that 'odd couple' relationship that makes for fun banter and frequent bickering. There is plenty of straight-forward action with sword fights, battles, daring escapes, rescues, robberies, etc. There are also lots of secrets and lies, betrayals and conspiracies. I hate it whenever I have to stop listening, because I'm wondering what's going to happen next.
I was pleasantly surprised that this book (books 3 and 4) did not suffer from the sophomore curse. This was on par with the first novel and I enjoyed it every bit as much. There are loads of different characters but the main focus is still on the main characters Royce and Hadrian. I love these characters and I can't wait for the next book.
While not my favorite, It is fun and enjoyable story. Just finished the series and found it a perfect filler while waiting for the next installments of my fantasy favorites (WoT final and Rainwilds). Even though "somewhat" predictable ... this was a fun and interesting story,very likable characters and quite well read.
There are a few series that, after finishing a volume, leave me with an almost obsessive urge to get the next volume and continue the story. The Dark Tower books by Stephen King and The Wheel of Time by Robert Jordan are two examples (I actually had "Michael Jordan" written... glad I caught that). After finishing the second volume of Michael J. Sullivan's Riyria Revelations I am left with this same feeling. I want the next book...right now! I think I will just have to go buy the print version - if the local book store has it - because this story is really, really good. Definitely do not buy it if you haven't read the first volume though. In that case, go get "Theft of Swords" and hope that by the time you get to the end of "Rise of Empire" audible has released the next book in the series.
Just like the first book, this is two novels in a single volume, and my opinion stands that it is an enjoyable adventure story. The two protagonists Hadrian and Royce have only gotten better as the books have gone on. With this type of the book, Sullivan could easily have gotten away with making them flat and standard characters, and I would have been more than happy. So imagine my surprise and glee when they turn out to have depth and purpose.
Something great about Riyria Revelations is that each book isn't a new paint job on the previous. The first book was an adventure romp, the second was a little town under attack, the third a besieged city, and the fourth a high sea adventure. Sounds pretty exciting eh? With each consecutive book, the story has grown and developed. I would be remiss to not admit I am a little disappointed in the book leaving its shallow relaxing origin to be something of more depth and meaning. Not a bad thing, good for most in fact. Though since the humor and laugh out loud moments have stuck around, I'm good, and have in fact already begun the third volume.
One thing that drives me up the wall in irritation is when a book constantly changes perspectives, resulting in numerous stories going on in a single book. This book has, I'd say three of these, but they didn't bother me. In fact I barely noticed them. There were the occasional "son of a gun" moments as the perspective switched at a cliffhanger point, but then I got treated to another storyline that I was missing. I liked all three, believe it or not.
This series and author are great since he doesn't bother with the boring parts. Yes those boring parts build up the story and suspense, but hey, as Sullivan proves, if you have just the good parts, you can do the same.
So, if you read the first book, Theft of Swords, then read on, it only gets better.
Yes, I think the narator did an excellent job of playing all the characters, the story is interesting and the characters in general kept the story alive.
Maybe to the golden compass, because of the threat of a power hungry, self righteous "authority" who wants to dominate the world.
Morbidly, I liked the scene when Haydrian and Royce reach the princess after they find out they were tricked. How Haydrian comforts the princess. You begin to realize that something is there even though they themselves are not aware of it yet.
The series in general is great. I've read some negative comments about the characters but in this set you start to understand them much more. You see them change, evolve and grow into real heroes...something they were not expecting of themselves.
The Riyria series is one of the best reads ever. The narration is perfect, the story complex enough to be engrossing and the characters are believable and easy to love or hate. I will hate to see this recording come to an end!
I love Arista. To see such innocence and hope transformed but not crushed is wonderful.
Every character has his or her own voice. They are distinctive enough that they very quickly become recognizable.
It has done both...but most of the tears will come when it is over!
amazing really good book would highly recommend. good story line lots of twists and turns
"Continues on from the 1st book just as good."
Micheal J Sullivan nows how to wtite and Mr Reynalds reads well.
The audio book was such fun to listen to.
If you like fantacy you'll love this and even if you don't this is a fun series to listen to.
"Good story well told"
overall it won't light the world on fire, but it's an interesting story, which is also well narrated.
"Hope it never ends"
my English isn't the best as you can maybe see, but as the title says hope it never ends, the characters and the plot/storyline is awesome, the reader is great his old guy voice is just perfect, totally worth buying.
"Not the fast paced read of the first instalment."
This second book in the trilogy promises much but delivers way less than the first part of the story.
The 'Americanisms' in the story are pretty cringeworthy with the use of terms like 'cookie' for biscuits, 'crazy' in stead of mad and 'honey' to give an affectionate term, all seem totally out of place in the context of the tale's setting.
Perhaps I'm being a little picky but I did not rate this as highly as the first part.
It's all very tongue in cheek, easy reading /listening anyway but it looses its grip and ability to enthuse about half way through this particular book, for me anyway.
It's still well read and a good performance but I just didn't enjoy this as much as its prequel.
Here's hoping the next book and the final one in this trilogy reverts back to the pace of the first.
"So good, I was ready to rate it 5 stars before finishing it!"
I must admit, I was a teensy bit on the fence about the narrator's skills in the first performance, but this, the second one, I thought was excellent. The story is superlative fantasy fare, with royalty, conspiracy, battles, intrigue, double-dealing, journeys and new cites and peoples to get to know, all expertly woven into a rapid pace tale that kept me sat in the car, outside my house, rapt, and not able to tear myself away from the listen.
The reluctant and basically indentured Empress Modina is a great twist to the tale, and Royce and Hadrian are the best pair of linked protagonists I think I've come across since Robin Hobb's Fitz and The Fool.
Super reading, definitely recommended
another solid and highly entertaining installment from both author and narrator, well worth the credit.
"Riyria Revelations series gets even better"
I loved this second volume of the Riyria Revelations - Rise of Empire. Tim Gerard Reynolds does a brilliant job of narrating the characters, each with their own voice and character. War in Melengar, a continued search for the Heir of Novron, Princess Arista, Amelia, the Empress - wow what a story. I couldn't stop listening. I'm now onto the final instalment of the Riyria Revelations and it just gets better.
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