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Darkening Skies

Path of the Thunderbird, Book 1
Narrated by: Nick Podehl
Series: Path of the Thunderbird, Book 1
Length: 9 hrs and 19 mins
Categories: Teens, Sci-Fi & Fantasy
4.5 out of 5 stars (111 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

A boy abandoned at an ancient school of warrior arts. A princess bartered away as a treaty bride. A lurking evil with the power to topple the world.

Ji Yu Raijin is happy to live out his life serving his school, cultivating his life force, and learning the path of darkening skies, an ancient and noble warrior art - until the day comes when he has to choose: Remain true to the teachings of his path and allow his art to die out or commit an unforgivable sin and save the world.

Second princess Shyong San Koida was born the only cripple in a dynasty of powerful warriors. With a broken life force, the only way Koida can contribute to her family’s empire is by sealing a strategic alliance to a barbarian leader with her hand in marriage. But hidden forces within the court conspire to stop the union and obliterate the Shyong San dynasty at all costs.

At the intersection of the servant boy and the princess’s stories lies a secret, malignant art bent on destroying not only them, but the entire world.

Darkening Skies is the first novel in the Path of the Thunderbird series, for fans of Wuxia, Xanxia, cultivation novels, demon beasts, and all styles of martial arts. Darkening Skies is written by Eden Hudson, enthusiastic but terrible martial arts student and best-selling author of Jubal Van Zandt and the litRPG fantasy Rogue Dungeon.

©2019 Shadow Alley Press Inc (P)2019 Shadow Alley Press Inc

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

A rare pleasure.

It is really unusual for me to give the first book in a series 5’s across the board. Whether it’s the editing, writing mechanics, prose, pacing, plot, narrator, or the characters and their development, it’s very difficult to produce an audiobook that isn’t at least mildly flawed in one of these areas.

Eden Hudson and Nick Podehl have done something really amazing with Darkening Skies... they have created an audiobook that has no obvious weak points in any of the areas listed above. If I had to say something about this audiobook that could be perceived as critical, the only thing I can come up with is that I really wish it was 5 hours longer. This isn’t to say that it ended poorly or that the book needed to be longer in order to be complete.

Really I was just super-bummed that the book was over and that I will have to wait until the 2nd volume is released to find out what happens next.

If you read any of my other reviews, you will note that I almost never give effusively positive reviews. And keeping in mind that the experience of listening to an audiobook is inherently a subjective experience... when I give a title a triple-5 review, then I’m saying that I believe that anyone who is a fan of this genre will not regret spending the credit.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

some of the bad reviews are misleading.

this cultivation novel was put together in a way that I haven't seen before, and I loved it from start to end. one thing that I noticed that is one of the bad reviews was very misleading it. in that review they said that the timeline jumps didn't make any sense, they made complete sense to me. I know that the author was telling the story from two different perspectives, basically from where the main character was when he was young, to where he is now. I love this book, and I definitely can't wait till the next one comes out. five stars all around, now that is a definite.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Lots of timeline jumping without a point...

The story is good but the time line jumping had not point and only made it harder to enjoy the book. Even in the end there was no point for the slip time line. It felt like the author just wanted to try out writing forward and back words in time. It could be that it was how the story came to him. I think this time it would’ve been a better story without it. Could’ve been two books and way better for it, however at the end of the book the past hadn’t caught up with present.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Its like anime but better!

These Cultivation Authors are killing it. I love duel timeline. Solid book and great start. Im bummed the next one isn't out yet

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Damn good

I really enjoyed the parallel story telling of how everything got to where they were. Normally I don’t enjoy that but it was well done this time. The changes in some of the characters were great and it left me wanting some more answers.

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good book

my only complaint with his book as I wish it was longer. still loved it

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Great book

Great book like a western wuxia light novel. Can't wait till next book. Hurry please.

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Quite good

While I suppose that this is a "cultivation" novel, that really isn't the driving force of the story, which has an unusual structure. I'll leave it at that.

I know that people tend to love Nick Podehl as a narrator, but I find his odd intonations of words irritating and distracting, as if he's trying a bit too hard. He irritated me less in this book than others.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Wow so good definitely a gem.

At first the books kinda confusing in the style the author chose to write it but as it gets closer to the middle of the book it starts to make a lot more sense and it's a very ingenious way to write. Everything from the character progression and plotline progression was masterfully done will definitely be reading the next book.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Great first book in a new series.

Really liked this one, finished it faster then expected. Waiting for the second book to come to audible. The narrator was on point, distinct characters. 5 stars frome me!

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 09-29-19

Very Very Good

I do like my Martial arts stories so i usually read them but im gradually checking them out on Audio. I wasn't sure if the accent would work or the pronunciation would be how i imagined it. With a nareator like Podehl i was in safe hands and it would be good , i was wrong it was very very good and i was trying to be critical. Raijin and Lysander especially were very good and exactly how i imagined them to be, Koida was done almost the same as how i thought as well so the listening experience was a pleasure and i flew through the story. Audio with a good story should come to life and so it was with this audio. Sometimes it works brilliantly and so i have no hesitations in giving a solid 5 stars all round especially as i own this story already and i loved it already.
I requested this audio and have decided to leave my thoughts on this for everyone.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • james mcadam
  • 09-08-19

great story

loved it great story and characters looking forward to the next book and the next journey in the characters lifes

0 of 1 people found this review helpful