Ringil Eskiath, scarred wielder of the kiriath-forged broadsword Ravensfriend, is a man on the run - from his past and the family who have disowned him, from the slave trade magnates of Trelayne who want him dead, and apparently from the dark gods themselves, who are taking an interest but making no more sense than they ever have.
Outlawed and exiled from his ancestral home in the north, Ringil has only one place left to turn - Yhelteth, city heart of the southern Empire, where perhaps he can seek asylum with the kiriath half-breed Archeth Indamaninarmal, former war comrade and now high-up advisor to the Emperor Jhiral Khimran II.
But Archeth Indamaninarmal has problems of her own to contend with, as does her house guest, bodyguard and one time steppe nomad Egar the Dragonbane. And far from gaining the respite he is seeks, Ringil will instead find himself implicated in fresh schemes and doubtful allegiances no safer than those he has left behind. Old enemies are stirring, the old order is rotted through and crumbling, and though no-one yet knows it, the city of Yhelteth is about to explode....
©2011 Richard Morgan (P)2011 Tantor Media
Believable characters. Close and dirty fighting. Cold and comfortable love making. Beautiful betrayals. Surprising story.
Egg. He is a mean mofo.
I finished listening to the 16 + Hours book in two days. While I made drawings for my blog
"Ground breaking fantasy"
Everything about this book is new - new world, new magic, new characters. The hero is a disenchanted war hero - and gay. This is significant because homosexuality is illegal in his world.You'll know all this having read The Steel Remains.
Ringil Eskiath is such a strange character. Charismatic but too confrontational and savagely judgmental, a sublime warrior but without a creed that others can understand. Only he would give himself the task of destroying the slave trade and address the supreme Radiant Emperor as the 'Shiny' Emperor.
His support cast is magnificent: vibrant Lady kir-Archeth Indamaninarmal (say that name with a couple of beers under your belt) - also gay and the sole remaining member of her race that left this world (no clear reason why, yet) and loyal Egar Dragonbane. Detailed characters with depth and scope. These are not one dimensional people who are too good to be true. In fact, even the minor characters are rich and complex and deeply flawed.
Simon Vance is an excellent narrator - experienced and unflappable.
"Partially entertaining but long winded"
Some of the aspects of the book were good, the action scenes were well put together. I did feel however, that some of the chapters seemed to be drawn out just for their own sake, I found myself fast forwarding a couple of times. There was also a lot of swearing, no big deal but unnecessary. There was also a lot of gratuitous sex, all of it gay which did absolutely nothing for me. I think I'll give the next book a miss.
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