If you follow my reviews, you know that I like to roll the dice, to randomly buy a series on a whim, on the luck of the draw. Sometimes, it's a bust...Show More »
This time, it's a definite win, but if you go by how the series was created, you'd probably run in the opposite direction.
Here's one for the books: Jim Butcher is well-known for his "Dresden Files" series, created a fantastic fantasy series on a BET. Yep, a bet. Read on.
To quote the Codex Alera Wiki site, "the inspiration for the series came from a bet Jim was challenged to by a member of the Delray Online Writer’s Workshop. The challenger bet that Jim could not write a good story based on a lame idea, and Jim countered that he could do it using two lame ideas of the challenger’s choosing. The “lame” ideas given were “Lost Roman Legion", and “Pokémon”.
It DOES sound lame.
Well, Butcher makes it work. To the nines.
I've finished this first novel, and I'm enjoying this unique story line of humans with Roman similarities binding with elemental furies. Add unique races, backstabbing, politics, military battles, duels and an interwoven story line that pulls it all together, and you get a fantastic story that's simply put, a VERY VERY good listen.
The whole concept of fighting alongside elemental familiars used here is wonderfully executed. It's deep, well-thought magic-based partnership of man and magical creature is a pleasure to experience.
So, what about the writing?
Again, if you follow my reviews, you know that I love ENGAGING fantasy or scifi writing. Anything less won't do. And this is definitely engaging. There's great characters that plot, backstab, challenge, fight for their beliefs, devour their enemies, and celebrate their victories. You're taken on a great romp of a story, and in the end, isn't that what we all want in a good listen?
I know I do, and I so enjoyed this first audiobook in the series, that I bought the entire series. Yep. And I'm not disappointed with the decision.
Who knew that Lost Roman Legions and Pokemon could knock it out of the park?
Academ's Fury picks up about two years after the conclusion of the previous book, Furies of Calderon. Our hero, Tavi, is now a student at Hogw--oops! ..Show More »Um--at the Academy in Alera Imperia. Along with his new position as the High Lord's page, Tavi is making new friends and new enemies right and left. There's treason in the air and assassins around every corner. Meanwhile, back in Calderon Valley, the nastiest enemy of all is taking root. Not the strongest book in the series but not the weakest either. I love Jim Butcher and I enjoy his style--warts and all--and this book certainly does nothing to change that. It introduces some great characters who will play important roles in the books to come, so it is a must-read for that reason alone. Some events feel a bit contrived, and there are plenty of Harry Potter parallels; don't let any of that dissuade you. Lot's of fun to be had here, so I suggest you ignore the minor bumps in the road and just enjoy the ride.
This review applies to the series. Normally, I listen to sci-fi and decided to give this fantasy series a try because of the high ratings the books g..Show More »ot at Amazon, and I was surprised how much I enjoyed it. The characters are excellent, the plot good, etc. The first book takes a little getting use to the new concept of furies and the author doesn't really try to explain how one gets these furies powers. (This probably explains some of the poor reviews on the 1st book) He does implied that it is genetic, but how many people in today's society really understand genetics? Who's ya daddy! The sixth book of this series is due out in November and I looking forward to it.
Kate Reading does one of the best jobs of narration in this series that I've heard anywhere! If you like a narration performance, you'll like this one. Lots of blood and guts, but very, very few 4-ltr words, if you dont count CROWs; - this series swear word.
Audible needs to cross-reference these audio books with the book reviews in Amazon, their parent company (I believe). This is especially true where there are few or no reviews on the book. Just a note about my high 5-star ratings - I usually only rate books that I really enjoy, hence high ratings in all my rating history. Hope this helps!
I have listened to the books in this series and (yikes!) I got so involved I stopped everything I was doing and enjoyed the action! Kate Readi..Show More »ng is ABSOLUTELY AWESOME. She really brings the characters to life throughout the whole series thus far and I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised by the amount of emotion in her voice! I found myself "feeling" the emotions of characters and situations and I loved the descriptions of places and people, the writer really drew me into the story. I would have to say that this series should be on the credit-worthy list. As a side note, I feel the need to add that I love "Epics" but I am terribly picky about what series I keep listening / reading. This is a great one and I will be sad when it's over.
The book itself is great fun, and I'd listen to Kate Reading read the phone book, but there is something wrong with the editing of this audiobook. In..Show More » a few places there are very abrupt and noticeably short intervals between words and in at least one place, some text has just been skipped over. This is the first time I've experienced such a strange problem with a downloaded book.
This book was an excellent conclusion to the series. It's so good to see an author stick to his guns and tie up a series on time! He's left enough r..Show More »oom for future books in the series. Looking forward to seeing some new books in the next few years; however, I'm also really looking forward to Jim's new SciFi series :) If you're a fan of the series this book will not disappoint!