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The Emperor's Blades: Chronicle of the Unhewn Throne, Book 1 | [Brian Staveley]

The Emperor's Blades: Chronicle of the Unhewn Throne, Book 1

In The Emperor's Blades by Brian Staveley, the emperor of Annur is dead, slain by enemies unknown. His daughter and two sons, scattered across the world, do what they must to stay alive and unmask the assassins. But each of them also has a life-path on which their father set them, destinies entangled with both ancient enemies and inscrutable gods.
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Publisher's Summary

In The Emperor's Blades by Brian Staveley, the emperor of Annur is dead, slain by enemies unknown. His daughter and two sons, scattered across the world, do what they must to stay alive and unmask the assassins. But each of them also has a life-path on which their father set them, destinies entangled with both ancient enemies and inscrutable gods.

Kaden, the heir to the Unhewn Throne, has spent eight years sequestered in a remote mountain monastery, learning the enigmatic discipline of monks devoted to the Blank God. Their rituals hold the key to an ancient power he must master before it's too late.

An ocean away, Valyn endures the brutal training of the Kettral, elite soldiers who fly into battle on gigantic black hawks. But before he can set out to save Kaden, Valyn must survive one horrific final test.

At the heart of the empire, Minister Adare, elevated to her station by one of the emperor's final acts, is determined to prove herself to her people. But Adare also believes she knows who murdered her father, and she will stop at nothing - and risk everything - to see that justice is meted out.

©2014 Brian Stavely (P)2013 Brilliance Audio, Inc.

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.4 (1547 )
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Story
4.5 (1450 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Steve H. Caldwell Tacoma, WA 06-30-14
    Steve H. Caldwell Tacoma, WA 06-30-14 Member Since 2014

    Book Maniac

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A bright Light In the Fantasy Sky!"

    Brian Staveley is a bright new light in the Fantasy genre. I thought it sounded good from the publishers summary but wow, it was so much better. The characters come alive in your mind, they are so well written.The plot is well set up, with 3 POV characters that have distinct experiences that make sense and are consistent. No slow spots, the story moves along with thrills, disappointments (for the characters) Successes, failures, love, loss and revenge all making for compelling reading. I can't recommend this highly enough! I can't wait for the next books in the series. Simon Vance does a great job narrating as always. He is a top 5 narrator in my opinion.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    B S Davis 06-04-14
    B S Davis 06-04-14 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
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    5
    3
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    "a Great fine!"
    Would you consider the audio edition of The Emperor's Blades to be better than the print version?

    I do not own the print version


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    The monk in that I loved the way his teaching is describe in detail. I felt like I was going through the lessons as well


    Which character – as performed by Simon Vance – was your favorite?

    The oldest monk. I felt like he was very real. He did a very good job of voicing all the character in the book


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    When the body was discovered on the island. Discribe is very good detail


    Any additional comments?

    I tried this book out base on Audible. They were right. This has become one of my favorite books. The Audible version is done very good. Because of this I became a member of Audible

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jennifer Sanger 06-04-14 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Can't wait for next in the series"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Reminds me of a less intricate Game of Thrones. A little slow to get started (as others have noted) but worth the effort. Soon develops a nice rhythm and characters come alive. Interesting story that has clearly just begun and I can't wait to see what happens next. Only disappointment is that I didn't realize the next one hasn't been published yet. I was raring to go only to find out I have to wait until next year.


    What about Simon Vance’s performance did you like?

    Narrator does a good job helping us to "see" the characters and sets a consistent, enjoyable cadence.


    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    S. Mouton 06-02-14
    S. Mouton 06-02-14

    lively up yourself

    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
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    "Awful narration, OK story"
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    Definitely better narration.


    What was most disappointing about Brian Staveley’s story?

    Perhaps the overwhelming seriousness. It's difficult to feel sympathy for characters who are always so awfully serious.


    How could the performance have been better?

    Simon Vance can't seem to decide what accents to use. Perhaps because of that, he gives a horribly racist depiction of an East Asian accent speaking English to some characters, various accents from the UK to others, and to some he switches back and forth between playing Short Round, Mr Yunioshi, or some British Imperial caricature.


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from The Emperor's Blades?

    It's tough to answer this question. Most of the time I focused on the narrator rather than the story.


    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Eian Benson, AZ, United States 02-27-14
    Eian Benson, AZ, United States 02-27-14 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
    13
    ratings
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    17
    8
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    "Great let down"
    Any additional comments?

    I look for a good book to listen to but was not impressed with this one. The swearing in this book was to much and had to stop listening to it. Beware if you don't like ruff language.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    jesse 02-12-14
    jesse 02-12-14 Listener Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
    9
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    97
    8
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    "Don't let the 5 star reviewers deceive you."
    What would have made The Emperor's Blades better?

    More accurate reviews. Who is paying these people to compare this author to Martin and Abercrombie......so rediculously misleading:/


    What was most disappointing about Brian Staveley’s story?

    Elementary dialogue and rushed character development.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    The scene in the seedy bar that fell into the sea. This is when the dialogue got so bad that I knew I was done reading.


    Any additional comments?

    Returning immediately. Thank you Amazon


    Oh....Simon Vance was excellent as always.

    5 of 10 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Brian United States 01-31-14
    Brian United States 01-31-14 Member Since 2012

    Love listening to Sci-Fi and Fantasy on the way to work!

    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
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    5
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    "I rarely write reviews."
    Would you listen to The Emperor's Blades again? Why?

    A lot to really like here, epically considering it is his first book. Good characters, he slowly drops you into the world and it's ways,


    What did you like best about this story?

    Good characters, three stories and they are all distinct and interesting, although the story of Adare takes some time to get going but gets good.


    Have you listened to any of Simon Vance’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    He has no other publish audio books I am aware of so, no.


    Any additional comments?

    If you like fantasy give this one a try, I was pleasantly surprised, it's rare I pick out a random book due to reviews and they actually meet the hype and reviews.

    4 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    D.N. Kalamazoo, Michigan 05-10-14
    D.N. Kalamazoo, Michigan 05-10-14 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Good performance except for invective use"

    If you can wade through all the invective use with the f-word you could find a story that's interesting. Not waiting for future books.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Keith Colorado 04-07-14
    Keith Colorado 04-07-14 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    11
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    63
    8
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    9
    4
    Overall
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    Story
    "It's okay, but not ground breaking"
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    I recommend this book to someone that wants an audio book playing in the background and doesn't want to have to pay close attention.


    What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

    The world is original and somewhat interesting. However, the plot feels a little like Harry Potter and his friends trying to solve the book's "who done it". I could not bring myself to care about the characters, they felt a little one dimensional and naive. Ultimately, it is an okay book to listen to in the background.


    What does Simon Vance bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Simon Vance does a great job with the character's voices. The narration is smooth and not forced.


    Do you think The Emperor's Blades needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

    I am sure the "follow-up" book is needed to advance the story. It is debatable if I will pickup the second book.


    Any additional comments?

    Overall, this is a decent listen for those who want something playing in the background, that one does not need to pay close attention to.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Phinehas WESTFORD, MA, United States 02-18-14
    Phinehas WESTFORD, MA, United States 02-18-14 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
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    "Build up a little slow for my taste but worth it"
    Any additional comments?

    I thought it was an interesting and engaging story. I found some of the voices that the reader portrayed a bit annoying. Other than that it was extremely well read.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
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