Audie Award Nominee, Fantasy, 2013
Acclaimed author Michael J. Sullivan created instant best sellers with his spellbinding Riyria Revelations series. This first volume introduces Royce Melborn and Hadrian Blackwater, two enterprising thieves who end up running for their lives when they’re framed for the death of the king. Trapped in a conspiracy bigger than they can imagine, their only hope is unraveling an ancient mystery - before it’s too late.
Theft of Swords contains The Crown Conspiracy and Avempartha, books 1 and 2 of Riyria Revelations.
©2011 Michael J. Sullivan (P)2012 Recorded Books, LLC
A strong story that moved forward quickly. It lacks finesse at times, but as this seems to be the first major book the author wrote I'm extremely impressed. His characters are likable, the motion engaging, fight sequences realistic and convincing, and even when at times he goes for over the top he nearly makes it, which is a challenging feat in the world of fantasy. It left me curious about the expansion of this world, and thrilled that the next book is significantly longer! Overall, well done!
This is a great series. The characters are throughly developed the plot is intricate and there is enough humor between the two main characters to offset the realistic portrayal of feudal life in all its poverty, bigotry, and casual attitude about the worth of human life. Many of the secondary characters carry important parts. In fact, no scene can be assumed to be unimportant, it may hold a key to a puzzle in a future book. The fantasy and magic in the series are not explained but shown in glimpses throughout the books. Again, all of this series is great, including the prequels.
The dynamic between the two main characters. The motivation of either are so believable it seems like I know the two personally. Yes each is an Archetype but they are also very deep characters.
Hadrian. I always had that kind of stupid moral certitude since I was a kid.
Royce. Tim Gerard Reynolds just has that cynical bastard voice and attitude down so well. Or possibly Albert, but he has such little dialog.
Yes. I think I actually lost sleep because of this book.
Riyria chronicles are good entertainment. Sullivan's story is not too heavy but does hold some surprises along the way. I thought Mr Reynolds narration was expressive. I didn't find his use of different voices too distracting.
I read the two short stories, maybe three, and enjoyed the camaraderie between Royce and Hadrian... it seemed to be a focus on the partnership between two different kinda guys! I've found the longer version/story to be a bit more focused on something OTHER THAN the two main characters... almost like the ruining effect of realizing that Indiana Jones didn't matter in Raiders of the Lost Arc! These two existentialists are so pivotal in the stories of all sorts of other characters, but the focus isn't on their friendship in the same manner as occurs in the Viscount and the Witch per se. Regardless, it's a fun twist on the heroes journey archetype. I've also read on blogs/boards about plot twists and spoilers, but am not deterred to indulge Sullivan's duo's adventure. I think some of the obstacles Sullivan has put before SOME characters (Esrahaddon's hands for example) serve to limit the stories potential to really go someplace interesting... while some characters (Hadrian's mercenary with a heart of gold, orphan, young jovial stud) are shallow and serve to only prop up other characters (Royce) when more conflict or need for one another would fill in the story nicely. As is, Royce and Hadrian are a pair of heroes who have ALREADY worked through their differences (via Sullivan's commentary on a blog) and are now just two buddies who have found a journey to spend their time and energy on... but, it is a fun tale so far, so I'll see it through. Maybe the 3 latter stories (albeit prequel in nature) will be more compelling in regards to the nature of the two main characters!
"Great, brilliant. A must for fantasy lovers"
I have finally got round to stating how fabulous these books are - all hail Royce and Hadrian brought to life by the fantastic Tim Gerard Reynolds from the mind of Michael J Sullivan - I have lost track on how many times I have listened to these books and I am never bored - to all new readers get these books and I guarantee it will be money well spent 😊
"Worked - in parts"
This was a decent fantasy romp with lots of the right ingredients. I liked the main characters, the plot was good & unpredictable.
However .... I get really turned off when the main characters do things I wouldn't expect after coming to know them. Or when events just fit (too) neatly together..
For example (SPOILER) .. two thieves, part of a underground hidden mysterious guild, suddenly become kings protectors (really? what about avoiding the limelight?) ... donate the financial reward to a monk (arent they thieves?) ... help a young woman for a couple of silver... It just didnt add up for me - I didnt buy into it. So whilst I kinda enjoyed the story, liked the main guys, it never really held me by the short & curlies.
The narration was great.
"An Old-fashioned Same Old Same Old"
To be honest I'm only a third the way through. Nothing has grabbed me and I'm forcing myself to listen to more of it. It really is all the other books from the '70's and '80's re hashed. I think this is one to send back. Even the narrator is mildly annoying and would do better in children's books. Perhaps it grows further along but I'm not willing to grit my teeth any longer.
"Good story, aweful reading"
Not really. I enjoyed the story, but the reading was incredibly distracting. The story pulled me along to the point where I had invested too much of my time to give the story up, although the reading often made me want to.
No huge surprises for me here. The story is reliably (perhaps comfortably) predictable which suited my listening needs at the time.
Tim Gerard's performance ruined this story for me. I found his intonation/inflection hugely distracting and inappropriate. It often trivialised the point and shaped characters into something I'm not sure the author intended. I haven't checked his CV, but I suspect Tim has done a great deal of theatre work, if not perhaps he should. I feel he over played each part and as a result the characters weren't natural or believably,
I suspect I would have enjoyed this book far more if I had read it rather than listened to it.
Nothing could have worked that kind of Magic i'm afraid. A differant author and a differant narrator.
Not really, no.
I got this book because of the great reviews. I lasted longer than normal, presuming things to pick up, but alas they didn't. It is like a children's book, and the narrator talks as though he is reading a children's book to children. My tastes are abercrombie, Martin, Sanderson. This is nothing like them and i'll be returning it i'm afraid.
I liked this book so much I downloaded the next ones in the series to follow on with. I thought the two main characters were interesting and had room for development in further books. This is not as good as Joe Abercrombie in my opinion but that could have been the narrator. I liked Tim Gerard Reynolds narration of Red Rising, but felt that he was wrong for this book. I got used to him but I think his voice lacked the characterisation needed to carry this off well.
This is a good solid fantasy series to get stuck into but it's no Patrick Rothfuss or Joe Abercrombie. This is not going to stop me from listening to all of his stuff though!
A well crafted story that is really fun to read/listen. The next two books only improve. Recommended.
My first experience of Michael J Sullivan and I will be returning for more. The adventures of Royce & Hadrian kept me entertained for hours. I really like the pace of the story and how it quickly unfolded but kept the intrigue there, beckoning me on wanting to know more. Hadrian's optimistic character is a good balance for Royce's darkness. A great adventure story with a dark side.
Having picked up The Jester on Audible, simply because it was free, I had to get the full story. I was instantly hooked and loved the two main characters and had to find out more. The Theft of Swords contains the first two books of the six part series and they lived up to my expectations of a great story, and more! Highly recommended if you enjoy fantasy/action and read brilliantly. Now I can't wait to get the rest!
"Brill will be starting the next book straight away"
Great fantasy book very well read would recommend ,not for a young age though has a lot of adult material . The books seems all too follow on after each other making you want too know more about the world and the events that are soon to follow .
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