In a world where an industrial revolution is powered by magic, Tyen, a student of archaeology, unearths a sentient book called Vella. Once a young sorcerer-bookbinder, Vella was transformed into a useful tool by one of the greatest sorcerers of history. Since then she has been collecting information, including a vital clue to the disaster Tyen’s world faces.Elsewhere, in an land ruled by priests, Rielle the dyer’s daughter has been taught that to use magic is to steal from the Angels. Yet she knows she has a talent for it, and that there is a corrupter in the city willing to teach her how to use it – should she dare to risk the Angels’ wrath.Yet not everything is as Tyen and Rielle have been raised to believe. Not the nature of magic, nor the laws of their lands… and not even the people they trust.
©2014 Copyright © 2014 by Trudi Canavan. The moral right of the author has been asserted. (P)2014 Bolinda Publishing Pty Ltd
When I drive, I read... uhm listen. I like SciFi, Fantasy, some Detective and Espionage novels and Religion. Now and then I will also listen to something else.
These days it feels as if Trudi Canavan is shooting very straight arrows. A hero (in this case Tyen) sets out on a journey in which he realises that the institution where he studies has been keeping secrets (in this case 'The Academy'). His loyalties are severely challenged and he will become another person. There is also a heroine who finds herself in a very similar situation (in this case Rielle). She discovers basically the same as the hero, but it is more implicit.
It is as if Canavan's foreshadowing technique has become blatant. In the case of Rielle for instance, she is first harassed by a person with a tarnished soul... thereafter the wheels start rolling and guess what she will become... !
The parallels between the two main characters are so obvious, they even end up in more or less the same situation at the end of the book.
What is new? Well magic is not plentiful, it leaves stains in both people's worlds. They live in a multiverse with different worlds. (It makes me think of Orson Scott Card's Gate Thief in some way.) The thing that is new is 'Vella' (probably from the Latin, vellum, which is a page in a manuscript usually made from animal skin) a magic book that was a human being before... guess... the mightiest sorcerer changed her into a book. She is a 'truth'-saying book.
With so much predictability, I can just anxiously hope that Canavan will be able to steer the story to an interesting and unpredictable place. I hope the magic is still coming...
This book is recommended for anyone who want the depth of a Mills & Boon in a fantasy universe... but at this point without the romance. (Funnily the one thing absent is a homosexual character, but then it is not the last book.)
I mostly likes me some sword and sorcery, not really in to sifi but theirs a place in my library for anything from John Scalzi.
The Tyen parts of the book for the best and the Rielle parts for the least. Tyen's world was interesting full of a mix of science and magic. Where as Rielle's world was just to over the top stereo types, the corrupt church, uncaring parents, the fruit fling angry mob.
No, not the kind of book my friends read.
Grant was good he had a range of voices. Hannah was okay except for the voices of both upper class and poor females talked the same way. I don't expect unwed mother in the slums to sound like Eliza Doolittle, but at the same time I don't think she sound like Henry Higgins. Nothing against Hannah but the accent she gave to the females sounded wrong to generic I could not take it for long
Yes, to finish the story.
Great world building and interesting 'origin' stories for two protagonists, i will have to read it again when second part comes out.
It's hard to tell. Story is original and in style more adult than her previous books. Little steam punk but in feeling closer to Mistborn than steam-punky books.
Narration is very unobtrusive, clear and enjoyable. nothing feels forced and characters are well defined.
It seems like we got new great fantasy series. Just beware, it IS first part of trilogy, not first book in a series with separate stories. After it finishes you get the depressing waiting period till second part comes out.
I've loved reading and writing for as far back as I can remember. I live in Ontario, Canada with my dear dog Joram (Maltese).
This book was quite good. I found it annoying and frustrating the way in which the story switches between Tyen and Rielle. Another thing that bothered me was that I was fully expecting something to happen between two of the characters and it never did. It is a good story well written however.
The narration was quite good. I was pleased with both narrators and didn't have any complaints. I must mention though that I did enjoy Hannah Norris the most. There wasn't anything lacking with Grant Cartwright. He narrated just as good as Hannah Norris, I can't explain why I enjoyed her narration more but I did.
I'm not sure if I will be listening to this book again anytime soon. I wouldn't have any problems listening to it again, but there are so many other books out there and too little time.
Obsessive book hoarder, and intense audible lover.
This book had me the whole time. That seems to be happening more and more rarely, so this was a treasure. My only issue was Hannah Norris' frequent butchering of what sounded like it was trying to be middle eastern. Sometimes the R rolling was so atrocious I winced. If a narrator is able to maintain an accent, then by all means-- I love them! Differences in dialects welcome too! But Norris would drop, pick up, and overdo the accent frequently.
Cartwright was fantastic in his narration so I gave the performance 3 stars solely for his ability.
The rest was A+ in my opinion, so I was able to listen to the full book without losing all the ambiance of the novel.
i have bougt this as an audio book because i enyoied reading both sone trilogies which she had written bevore, so i didnt gave it a nother look and just started hearing to it and was sort of confused at the beginning why magic doesnt work the way i was used to. but by the time i had figuerd that out, didn't took that long ;-), it was a realy good written book and i enjoyed the new possibilities and chalanges that came with this aproach of how magic works.
i found my selve amused a couple of timess by this book, but not so often as in the sonea series. but i belive this is also because i got to know the chracters better over the last 6 books.
i'm looking foreword to a new book and i'm definetly going to by that one as well.
Yes, but I would need encouraged.
Not as good. Male character seems lacking in smarts. While the female character is a push over. Both of which are fine, but a whole book of it where nothing really happens. WOW.....
Don't speak with the female accent. Change it slightly. In combination with the timidity of the female character it's painful to listen to. Every chapter of hers was can I get to the next as fast a possible. Male role was nice. Aside for characters lack or intelligence.
No. Characters lack something. Wouldn't translate to screen.
YES, If anyone had a book of 1000+ years of history and lost magic they would ask about it. It's as if the author lacks the willingness to explore the infinite depths of what could be revealed and take the story into an much more exciting path.
Yes i really like that their where two narrators telling the story
I really like the part of the story with the book.
No it took me a couple days to listen to it.
Listen to book via audible.
I really enjoy this author work i read her Black Magician trilogy when i was in highschool and really enjoyed it. This is a whole new series in a whole new world and i really like how their where two seperate stories going on in this story. I was hoping that the two would merge at some point in the story but that never happens. Which i think was the author intention all along she wanted you get to hooked by these two characters, draw you in and leave you so you want to see where it all goes. Great start to the new series.
"Just didn't take off"
I really enjoyed this author's 'Black Magician' trilogy and was looking forward to something with a steampunk edge from her. She seemed like someone who did lightweight, pacey fantasy right.
But I just had to give up on this one. Despite the narrator gamely doing his best, he couldn't get any personality out of the robotic lead, or excitement out of the functional prose. There's some neat ideas but it reminded me of the old Truman Capote quote, "this isn't writing, it's typing." Could just be me but this felt dead.
The two worlds in the book have almost nothing to do with each other, making it a toil to switch between characters. There is far too much focus on the female point of view and physical relationships - its not meant to be 50 Shades! I've loved Trudi Canavan's other works but this was an epic let down.
The Black Prism by Brent Weeks
The performances were fine, it was the characters that let them down.
I would leave the book in Tyen's point of view, develop him as a character and his story and get rid of Rielle.
As I said before I loved The Black Magician Trilogy, The Traitor Spy trilogy and The Age of Five, but this really was a disappointment.
"Beautifully narrated, slow burner."
Hats off to the Narrators, they really made this audiobook immersive, with seamless reading and great accents.
Although it's not a wild ride of a book, it has great ideas and is beautifully written. I was a little disappointed that I'll have to wait till next year to find out what happens next!
I think both Tyen and Rielle were excellent, although, especially initially I was more gripped by Tyen's storyline; Rielle's took a bit longer to really get going.
Thus far I think it's been my favorite of Trudi Canavan's books in audiobook format - a big part of this is definitely due to the narration - I hope Grant Cartwright and Hannah Norris will be narrating the next one when it comes out.
Being a Trudi Canavan fan I purchased this audiobook looking forward to another great journey into the fantasy. How let down I felt having only listened to a quater of the title. For a Trudi Canavan novel it had very little atmosphere about it; the plot lacked the drive and direction associated with her writings, giving it a stalling stop start about it. The characters too were weak and lifeless, this quality made all the poorer by the narrators. Whether I'm comparing this novel to one of Canavan's other more successful books such as the Novice, or Magicians Guild.
"A tale in two halves"
I enjoyed it a lot, I like the author, in particular the way she allows you to follow the thought process of the protagonists. It is difficult to rank the first book of a trilogy in comparison to completed trilogies. As a first of three it is not as compelling as the The Magicians Guild or The Priestess of the White, but more promising than The Ambassador's Mission (although the trilogy got better later).
I really enjoyed the action in the sections where it happens. It is also interesting to see a completely different type of magic, simpler than the one from the other books. It may well develop into something more complex, but all credit to the author to provide a different, fresher, take on it.
It is hard to prefer a character, they are both so different and they have been developed in parallel, without crossing paths. Tyen is easier to like because there is a lot of action and movement and you feel you can travel with him. On the other hand, Rielle shapes as an interesting young woman but had little action and a lot of cringe-worthy girlie naivety and sentimentality that was harder to listen to. I think both readers were excellent.
The moment that Rielle had to be separated from her loved ones. I just hate the idea of leaving Izare behind. He was never quite defined as a character and I would have loved to have got to know more about him.
I found Tyen gave me more enjoyment and his story, if you skip Rielle's, is very well paced. You can only get away with the slowness and agonising, excessive repetition of self-doubt that afflicts Rielle by interspersing it with Tyen's. Having said that, I am sure I got to know her better, so that's the pay-off for my patience.
Had been waiting for this book to come out. Trudi Canavan's characters and plots really draw you in. I would recommend you get this book, but I would suggest you wait till the second book is released as I feel this is mostly character introductions and does not feel like a complete book that can stand on its own. If you are not a follower of Trudi's previous book you will probably be left feeling dissatisfied with the incomplete storyline.
Hard to say without revealing any of the main story.
No this narrators are new to me. I do feel they compliment each other very we'll.
They characters are quite compelling but have not experienced anything to bet you emotional.
Use a credit not really worth spending extra cash on. Think it needs to be listened to with the future books waiting to be released.
"Not one of her best"
Probably not, the Black Magician (first trilogy) and The Circle of Five were stunning books which kept me reaching for the next chapter but the Traitor's Spy and this latest offering are not her best, this story just plods and doesn't seem to intrigue.
The narration is by two Australians which makes sense given the author's residence but they don't quite click for me. The female's depiction of the characters accents makes her sound like a robot.
If you love the work by Trudi Canavan you will enjoy the world(s) she creates, I do like the depths she has gone into and potential for expansion but this book really come up short of the expectations I have of Trudi.
"I'm a fan of Trudi Canavan...but"
I have read most of Trudi Canavans books, will appeal to most if they can put up with format.
I found the book hard to get into. It was disjointed. The storyline was good, but as I said "it just did not flow". I kept on listening hoping that it would get better.
The performance was fine
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