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.
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.
I do not own the print version
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
The oldest monk. I felt like he was very real. He did a very good job of voicing all the character in the book
When the body was discovered on the island. Discribe is very good detail
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
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.
Narrator does a good job helping us to "see" the characters and sets a consistent, enjoyable cadence.
Definitely better narration.
Perhaps the overwhelming seriousness. It's difficult to feel sympathy for characters who are always so awfully serious.
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.
It's tough to answer this question. Most of the time I focused on the narrator rather than the story.
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.
More accurate reviews. Who is paying these people to compare this author to Martin and Abercrombie......so rediculously misleading:/
Elementary dialogue and rushed character development.
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.
Returning immediately. Thank you Amazon
Oh....Simon Vance was excellent as always.
Love listening to Sci-Fi and Fantasy on the way to work!
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,
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.
He has no other publish audio books I am aware of so, no.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Simon Vance does a great job with the character's voices. The narration is smooth and not forced.
I am sure the "follow-up" book is needed to advance the story. It is debatable if I will pickup the second book.
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.
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.
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