At last, the story fantasy fans have been waiting for!
The incredible story that fans of The Sun Sword series have been waiting to listen to - the battle for control of House Terafin.
Orphaned and left to fend for herself in the slums of Averalaan, Jewel Markess - Jay to her friends - meets an unlikely savior in Rath, a man who prowls the ruins of the undercity in search of artifacts and treasure. Nursing Jay back to health is an unusual act for a man who renounced his own family long ago, and the situation becomes stranger still when Jay begins to form a den of other rescued children in Rath’s home. But worse perils lurk beneath the slums: The demons that once nearly destroyed the Essalieyan Empire are stirring again, and soon Rath and Jay will find themselves targets of these deadly and ruthless beings.
©2007 Michelle Sagara (P)2013 Audible, Inc.
A story like this is worth listening to again. The cast of characters is petty big and the mystery they weave is revealed slowly with lots of twists and turns.
I found this book similar to Kristen Britain's Green Rider. An excellent story with believable characters that you care very much about.
The characters are richly presented. Through her narration I developed an emotional attachment to all of them.
She reveals the difficult and challenging lives that these young children have endured. The author takes her characters through a number of "gut wrenching" situations that leave you emotionally drained.
Read. Listen. Live.
I became a fan of Michele Sagara by listening to the Chronicles of Elantra Series. Imagine my delight when I discovered another series written by her!
This book is just as descriptive and magical.
Michelle has a special talent for creating worlds that come alive, peopled with characters that wend their way into your life.
Eva's reading of the book is also excellent. Her voice is perfect for 10-year old Jay. My only criticism would be the voice of Aaron, which sounded a bit too forced or fake. But overall, what great job she does with a wide cast of characters.
I'm off to download Book 2!
The oddity of this series is that it was written/released out of order. My understanding is the 1st three books start the plot. A 2nd group of six books (not on Audible) called The Sun Sword (under the name Michelle Sagara) sit between the 1st three books and the last three books of House War. There's no impact at all in the 1st three books as there's no reference to events that technically happen in the future. It is a little problematic in the last three books as references to the plot in the Sun Sword series as somewhat frequent.
Another oddity of the writing is that as the books proceed, no standard narrator or point of view device is used. The same chapter can switch between the viewpoints of different characters for the same events. There are a few irritating tendencies like the overuse of phases like "perfect bow," but overall the series has been enjoyable.
So many authors these days create a collection of one dis-likable character after another. This series is dominated by mostly positive character development that feels more realistic... i.e. no society could survive in worlds dominated by even "heros" who are somewhat craven - much less so many people with less than zero humanity in them.
That said, the plots in each of the books are relatively compact - i.e. not a lot of "action" happens. There are lots of situations and conversations and discussions with occasional activity/action thrown in. For the most part, this is not a negative. In a few instances, repeated sections focused on the mental recriminations or doubts of characters do get a little repetitive.
I loved how easily I became engaged in the characters and the world that Michelle created. I think her characters seem very "real" and I wanted to know more about the history of all of them and what had made them who they were. Some were hard to like, some are easier to like, but I think that's true about real people.
I am especially interested in the "Hidden City" and I hope we learn more about it in the future, it was more of just a tease in this novel.
Maybe Teller. He's not that prominent but I like what he represents.
A lot of moments in this book moved me. This story has a very visceral feel to it. It's hard to listen to sometimes, but it makes the characters more believable and gives them a lot of depth. In some ways Michelle's writing reminds me of George R. Martin, not afraid to go into the dark areas of life, showing how they shape a person.
I needed more of a "brain candy" book after this to lighten my mood, but I will use my next credit to get the next book in this series because I want to know what happens next.
I had read this book once before, although not the series, and was very happy to see it on audible. I was drawn in immediately to the story and the characters, The author does a good job making you care about her characters, and the narrator does a good job portraying them. Then narrator did seem to get a little monotonous at times, but I'm not sure if that was entirely her fault, or the fault of the narration itself. The story was long and twisted, and if you aren't already familiar with this world that the author is creating, you needed some description and explanation. This series is a prequel to the Sun Sword series by the same author, but unfortunately it's not on audible. I am looking forward to listening to the rest of the House Wars series.
Constant reader. Likes imaginative work, not formulaic filler.
Great concepts. Fascinating world. Worthy and engaging characters. All hidden by useless verbiage tossed in like Styrofoam peanuts in a crate of fragile glassware.
Terrific story, great characters, interesting local. Rich with action, back story and human emotions. Can't wait to hear the next book. The narrator was fine, not great. Too many voices sounded the same.
You almost needed a notepad there were so many different characters.... Has potential...but just too much information you have to grasp....not an easy listen.
I have read all of this authors works under her other pen name. Michelle Sagara and truly enjoyed them. These books definitely feel similar but are unique as well. This was a very well done first book in a series and o can't wait to read the rest.
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