The Last Namsara

Narrated by: Pearl Mackie
Series: Iskari, Book 1
Length: 11 hrs and 16 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (355 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Kristen Ciccarelli's debut fantasy explores an intricately woven world of deception, inner darkness, and dragons that fantasy fans won't be able to resist. 

In the beginning there was the Namsara: the child of sky and spirit who carried love and laughter wherever he went. But where there is light, there must be darkness - and so there was also the Iskari. The child of blood and moonlight. The destroyer. The death bringer. 

These are the legends that Asha, daughter of the king of Firgaard, has grown up learning in hushed whispers, drawn to the forbidden figures of the past. But it isn't until she becomes the fiercest, most feared dragon slayer in the land that she takes on the role of the next Iskari - a lonely destiny that leaves her feeling more like a weapon than a girl. 

Asha conquers each dragon and brings its head to the king, but no kill can free her from the shackles that await at home: her betrothal to the cruel commandant, a man who holds the truth about her nature in his palm.

When she's offered the chance to gain her freedom in exchange for the life of the most powerful dragon in Firgaard, she finds that there may be more truth to the ancient stories than she ever could have expected. With the help of a secret friend - a slave boy from her betrothed's household - Asha must shed the layers of her Iskari bondage and open her heart to love, light, and a truth that has been kept from her. 

©2017 Kristen Ciccarelli (P)2017 HarperCollins Publishers

What listeners say about The Last Namsara

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Amazing book

We have been blessed with a rich canon of dragon stories and lore throughout time. From the whimsical of Dealing with Dragons and How to train your dragon to the more serious of Game of Thrones and Dragons of Autumn Twilight. There have been minor characters in the works of Harry Potter. There is even a reference to dragons in the Book of Mormon. Dragon storytelling and dragon lore is nothing new and is rarely something that is expressively better than what we already have. They breathe fire. They menace people. They are either inherently evil, or flawed and susceptible to human direction. There is that well established canon. The Last Namsara is the first book to add to that canon in a long time in a way where the dragons are given the respect and portrayal they deserve.

This story shows a loving respect for the personality and measure of dragons. The dragons portrayed are smart, calculated, emotionally equal to humans, and convincing. The story follows a young queen, Asha, betrothed to a young man and not wanting to marry him, and she will do anything to get out of that commitment. Initially she reminded me of Katniss Everdeen, but soon I found her to be more complete in her character and more developed mentally. Asha hunts not for food, but for repentance, making her hunts less about feeding Prim and more about absolving her sins before those of her Kingdom. It is this passion of being forgiven and making what was wrong right that gave me a strong desire to follow her story. As her story develops, her fierceness, emotional connections to those around her, and her drive creates a story that is a page turning endeavor. I loved every moment of this book.

Lastly, I am an audio learner; so once again, I bought this book on Audible. I listened to it, as did my wife (a rare book we both liked). The reader on Audible, Pearl Mackie, does a fantastic job. Her pacing, emotional range, and investment are unmatched. She really compliments the writing and the story with the voice she brings to this epic journey.

5 people found this helpful

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Entrancing

This book was fantastic! I was completely captivated by this story. As it unfolds, I was taken in directions that were completely unexpected. I was so impressed with the new-but vaguely familiar-world that the author has created here. It is beautiful, and the dragons are such a wonderful addition! They are beautiful and tragic and dangerous and again, provide unexpected twists and turns to the story.

One other thing I liked about this story: in this story all character descriptions are race-neutral. The characters are described as having beautiful curly hair cascading over a shoulder- what color? Doesn't matter. Eyes are deep and piercing and passionate. They are not blue, brown, or hazel. Skin is soft, or weathered, or smooth, or wrinkled, but not pale as snow or black or chocolate or tanned. These characters can be however you want them to be, whatever that descriptive beauty evokes in your mind... and that adds a layer of loveliness rarely found in books these days. I loved it!

1 person found this helpful

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this story was so bad!

this story was so bad! It was so unbelievably predictable I was rolling my eyes every three sentences! Every time it tried to tell a story plot there was nothing interesting about it anytime it tried to be thrilling it was so obvious what was going to happen I was shocked! I can't believe I finish this book took years of my life away! I should have stopped a quarter of the way through after I realized it was horrid! Do yourself a favor and stay away from this dumb book.

1 person found this helpful

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Not really into dragons....But

Overall I enjoyed the story. I began to like the characters as they began to develop. While I like the sound of the narrator's voice, I didn't care for her reading. Her acting was good ( I've liked her in other books) she whispered through this entire story even stage whispering the yelling until the very end of the book. Overall good story though.

1 person found this helpful

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A Book Showing the Power of Stories

I really enjoyed this for two reasons: dragons and the power of stories! Asha is the living embodiment of the old stories in the beautiful fantasy debut for this author. I love how Asha goes from believing that what she was doing was right to seeing through the lies she was told. Asha is a pure badass and I truly enjoyed her as a main character. I loved how the forbidden romance wasn't such a prominent feature. The only complaint I have was that it was slow in certain parts, but the story was enjoyable.

1 person found this helpful

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okay I haven't finished it yet but...

I love Pearl Mackie's narration!!! I hope she continues to narrate books between Doctor Who filming schedules.

3 people found this helpful

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Great Story, Great Narrator

I loved listening to this book! I only listened at work and actually looked forward to getting to work just to listen!
It was a great experience for my first audio book.

2 people found this helpful

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breathtaking

great and breathtaking tail cant wait for the next one. love this book so much

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Great story! Great narration!

I'm not sure if this is designed to be a Christian fantasy, but it had a very deep spiritual theme. I loved it! I've read/listened to other books with intrude stories, but they all seemed a little choppy. Not this author.I think she does a seamless job! The characters were alluring. The love subplot thrilled my heart. The main plot kept me wanting to know all the lies the author hinted at. That being said, I didn't see them all coming. They all made since once revealed, but I can usually figure things out earlier. The narrator told the story beautifully, almost lyrical. Very impressed. Well done!!

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LOVE the storytelling elements involved!

I was into it as soon as it started. I didn't have to wait for it to get interesting at all. I love the idea of the book, loved the writing, loved the twists.