War is raging in Melengar. To save her kingdom, Princess Arista hires Royce and Hadrian to perform a dangerous mission behind the enemy's lines. Royce begins to suspect that they are being used as pawns in the wizard Esrahaddon’s shadowy struggle for power. The thieves journey to the ends of the world amid treachery and betrayals and Hadrian is forced to face a past he hoped never to see again.
©2011 Michael J. Sullivan (P)2012 Recorded Books LLC
"This series is thrilling, laugh-out-loud-funny, heartbreaking, chilling, and whip-smart at every turn." (Fantasy Faction)
"Hair-raising escapes, flashy sword fights, and faithful friendship complete the formula for good old-fashioned escapist fun." (Publisher's Weekly)
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"Two halves, one good, one nearly good"
Enjoyed the first half, but the second felt too artificial, too forced at the end, which is a shame. Overall, though, great listen.
"Can't get better fantasy than this"
Have read a ton of fantasy in my life and perhaps with the exception of Martin and Abercrombie, no one gets close this author.
"I would love to love it but I only liked it"
I enjoyed the "Theft of Swords". I quite enjoyed the first story in "Rise of Empire". But the "Emerald Strom" was too much for me. It just doesn't add up! It seems the main goal here was making the story as twisted as possible, which, for me, made the whole thing implausible. For example: *MINOR SPOILERS AHEAD*. The evil mastermind devises a plan which relies on luck in more ways than I can name (two boat trips AND a jungle trek - all part of the plan). And the Heroic Duo decide that the best way to counter that plan is to actually preemptively break what the bad guy wanted broken in the first place...
"Classic Fantasy Fun"
Story – 4/5
Although my star ratings are the same, I actually think this book was better than the first in the trilogy overall. The story is very entertaining, and the characters extremely likeable. If you enjoyed the first novel, I am certain you will find this one even better. The overall story is progressing quite nicely now, and I am looking forward to the concluding audiobook.
It is a lot more traditional of a fantasy novel and doesn’t really do anything ground breaking. There also seems a bit of a reluctance to do the realistic brutal things that have made modern fantasy novels really stand out from the crowd. As a consequence though, this novel is more accessible to the young adult audience, even if it is not necessarily aimed at them.
You do get value for money with it though. As with all books in this trilogy, you are getting 2 books in 1, so you will notice the ending of one, and the starting of the other in the middle of the audiobook.
Tim Gerard Reynolds did quite a reasonable job of this audiobook. His voice acting is good, and each character is distinct. He sometimes describes the hopeless/danger scenes as if they are trivial, and the experience could be enhanced more with a change of tone/mood, but it didn’t spoil the story too much for me and after a while, I just got used to his style anyway.
They managed to resolve the production issues from the first audiobook, and this time there was no “change to disc 2” comments disrupting the flow of the story.
Overall – 4/5
"Sullivan continues to impress"
Tim Gerard Reynolds does a great job on the entire series. Love the story and plot development and it continues to provide hours of listening pleasure.
Theft, Rise and Heir all well worth the investment.
"Another excellent listen"
I have not read the print version
In fairness the whole book was memorable but the fight seems were very good
All of them
Not really I'm not a person that is moved easily though
A fantastic book that is gripping all the way though and almost annoyingly skips between people and seems before you know what's happened
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