When second son Alexander Valentine loses his brother to an assassin's arrow, he discovers that his family protects an ancient secret and reluctantly finds himself at the center of the final battle of a war that was supposed to have ended 2,000 years ago.
Pursued by the dark minions of an ancient enemy, Alexander flees to the mountain city of Glen Morillian where he discovers that he is the heir to the throne of Ruatha, one of the Seven Isles, but before he can claim the throne he must recover the ancient Thinblade. Seven were forged by the first Sovereign of the Seven Isles and bound to the bloodline of each of the seven Island Kings in exchange for their loyalty to the Old Law. Each sword is as long as a man's arm, as wide as a man’s thumb and so thin it can’t be seen when viewed from the edge.
Thinblade is the story of Alexander's quest to find the ancient sword, claim the throne of Ruatha, and raise an army to stand against the enemy that has awoken to claim dominion over all of the Seven Isles.
©2011 David A. Wells (P)2014 Podium Publishing
Great book. Story line is absorbing. Loved the audiobook too. Love being able to switch from reading to listening.
As a stand alone it is exciting and colourful. As the first in a series it really sets the scene.
Thoroughly enjoyed this book. Looking forward to the next one in the series. Not too over the top. May not apeal to some readers but very glad i found this title.
David A Wells has come up with a pretty interesting world with some alright characters but the whole thing is lacking something. First of all the lead character Alexander is soooo boring and he seems to always be right or he knew that a situation was going to arise because he thinks he is so awesome and all the other characters tell him how right he is and how smart he is COME ON! it makes me really dislike him he needs some real human faults David A Wells kind of tries to do this by making him kind of enjoy killing but he is doing it for the greater good so that ruins it. The rest of the characters just seem underdeveloped with no soul.
Derek Perkins does an average job, pretty boring but it might just be the writing.
"Just the beginning...the series gets better!"
I will freely admit I did not love the beginning of this book. I kept thinking the author seemed like an amateur. I tired quickly of the seemingly copied and pasted over-long and unnecessary descriptions of food ("rich creamy butter" anyone?). But as the book went on it got a little bit better...enough to make me listen to book 2, and not just because of the abrupt anti-climactic ending that leaves you thinking where the heck is the rest of the story. Now that I have completed book 7 and can look back on the entire series, I'm very glad I stuck with it. I really enjoyed the ride.There are many twists and turns and unexpected surprises along the way. There is a lot more to this story than you would expect after finishing this first book. It was nice to see the author's writing skill grow with the story, each book better than the one before it.
Happy to report that "rich creamy butter" is probably only mentioned 1 or 2 times for the entire rest of the series!
fans of terry goodkind will love this story while waiting for the next sword of truth book to come out. I was reading it to kill time for just that reason and fell in love. I will definitely be reading the entire series!
"WOT and SOT are one."
This was a very good book. If you enjoy The Wheel of Time series or the Sword of Truth series this book will not disappoint. Although it seems more like the Sword of Truth then the Wheel of Time (before Terry Goodkind lost his touch). I would even say this would be a good start to a series if your looking to break away from the downward slope of bad writting that Goodkind has been putting out lately.
"a great classical adventure epic fantasy, not GRRM"
Silly question, I do not rate book linearly at the time of writing this review I have completed the first 5 books. Or all that are currently out on audible. The full series is coming out rather quickly. One complaint is that in several of the books,the stopping points are very abrupt. It is clear that this series is one big huge story. It is great fun and while in many ways it adheres to. The classical dungeons and Dragons universe, it does so only in the same way that hobbit seems very much like it. Also unlike many wizards,of the coast books, this story in no way is serving the actual game of dungeons and dragons it is simply in the vein of those kind of world and beastie tropes. For all that there is much that is very original and much that has some thought to it, I found the book and all the other books only get progressively better and the plot and character had more depth. For cynics or young amature shrinks, it is true that many of these character are very vanilla in that they are idealized and really are committed to do the right thing. but as an older reader who has been on a battlefield. While there broken or odd ball characters there are more straight forward heroes just ready to do their best that one might think. So I might not see this collection of loyal and moral folk as far fetched as others. That said this is not George R R Martin, not that there are no villains or heart breaking character kills, the flavor of this book is definitely more, for those who want a fun intricate large world that is full of very clearly a good side and a dark side. There is just enough subterfuge between our protagonists to keep the characters from seeming one dimensional. For the person who wants a fun escapist fantasy that is intelligent and issue filled,to be engaging but also clean and clear enough on plot that it serves as am escape for those who do not find the focus on grit and grime by say an Abercrombie all that great. I am a former marine. I know all about bush wounds and bush grit but the truth is if you do it for a living you get thick enough callouses that in my case, I Was able to step on a tack and not know it is was in the center of my heal till I heard the tile make noise when I walked. In other words, you do not focus on that stuff, And if you are constantly it's miserable, things I do not need in my adventure prose. But for a young buck who is really trying to I imagine there stories as real I can see how it might be alluring. This is for those who want a fun intelligent, coherent complex but straightforward fantasy story with a lot of cool fighting and cool Magic and it all works. I highly. Reccomend this book. If I could I would have giving this book a 4 and a half stars I would because for what it is. A great fantasy escape with depths to explore without any pretense of trying to be gritty "speculative fiction". It's just a da,n entertaining book that is part of a damn entertaining series. Book one The thin blade is all about setting up the social and metaphysical aspects of the world and obtaining the thin blade which is quite the cool weapon. If you want innovative fantasy that avoids the usual tropes of magic and fighters and wizards a and Dragons, This is not for you but if you can,enjoy such tropes if they are part of an intricately built and yet gigantic world then you might give it a try. I really enjoyed it but I was looking for a long epic escapist story while I healed and I found this series superb for an alternate place to put my mind for a while
The dragons in general were credible
Yes a fairly intelligent discourse between Alexander and Lucky on human nature and power. Fairly insightful reasoning,
The narrator. Was good but not astonishing. It is worth noting all of these books are long audio books and I never got sick of the narrators voice so that cannot be overlooked.
"Classic / entertaining fantasy for young adults"
Story is about a young man, Alexander, who is asked to take on the responsibility of being a savior for a nation against an enemy that woke up after centuries of slumber. Story verge on being classic fantasy where lines for good and evil are well drawn. I am a fan of GRRM and Joe Abercrombie, and this book seemed to be for young adults even though there is enough violence to argue otherwise.
The book has shades of LOTR and Belgariad in it. References such as 'line has been remade', and 'sword' that is the evidence of succession ideas which were abit close to LOTR. Where protagonist asking himself 'why me' reminded me a lot of Belgariad. As I said book is on the classic fantasy side; therefore, these type of comparison are inevitable.
World created in this book has high utilization of 'magic'. Magic is well known, there are various type of mages / wizards / arch-mages .. etc. Still, I had a to cringe a bit at times when the word magic was utilized a bit casually. My second gripe with book was that everything fit a bit too neatly that messages that were meant to be delivered to 'chosen or cursed' one were delivered even after centuries / magical gifts were provided and guidance was available readily.
Regardless of minor gripes, story is fast paced, and delivers entertaining story. Characters are well developed and reader gets a good sense of their motivations and reasons for their actions. Story develops in such a way that reader feels the urgency on various aspect of the story.
Narrator did a fantastic job, and it was a very enjoyable listen.
Again, if you are expecting ASOIF type book then look else where; otherwise, it is an entertaining book.
"GREAT STORY LINE"
THIS IS A GREAT STORY LINE EQUAL TO ANY DUNGEONS AND DRAGONS LIKE BOOKS I'VE READ, ESPECIALLY THE WHEEL OF TIME SERIES BY ROBERT JORDAN. GREAT CHARACTERS, VERY HARD TO PUT DOWN. MAKES ME WANT TO CONTINUE LISTENING.
"Just pure cheese."
A different author.
Talk about your high school prom drama on steroids!
I'm listening to this on my honor that I would, otherwise I would ditch it.
Perkins is great!
I can listen to him all day!
Yes. It was read by Perkins.
"Non-stop pace carries the day"
Fabulous narration by Derek Perkins. I'd rate this book PG-13: no sex, no cussing, but numerous bloody battles and some necromancy with human sacrifice. I'd almost go 3 stars for this first book, because the pace is quick, the characters are likable, and the plot fairly absorbing (but the writing style needs work).
THINBLADE is a fantasy novel with pervasive romantic elements (endlessly we're told of her piercing green eyes, his glittering golden eyes). The setting feels somewhat like fairy tale land — old Europe — complete with kings, castles, nobles, bards, guild houses, and guild masters. Fantastical elements in the series are many: mages, wizards, witches, familiars, wisps, succubi, demons, varied creatures spawned of necromancy (nether wolves, etc.), fairies, dragons, wyverns, shades, ghosts, etc.
Told in 3rd person, the tone of these books felt strange to me: an odd mix of intensely grim-dark and excessively joyful ("pure joy" pops up frequently — and at the strangest times — interspersed with many mischievous grins).
The author obviously knows this genre, based on all the creepy creatures he portrays —with vivid descriptions — and based on the constant rush to find the next magical artifact for defeating evil.
THINBLADE is carried along by its magical world-building and — even more — by its pace. Rarely a dull moment. Despite an unsophisticated writing style (see below), the story moves forward at a consistent pace.
The main characters and supporting characters are likable and convivial (if too flat). The hero, Alexander, began as a 24-year-old rancher with no training in magic or politics. Without the necessary character development, the author quickly transforms him into a confident, courageous, and wise ruler, giving orders to military generals as if he'd planned battle strategies all his life.
Villains: The main villain (Prince Phane) is too flat, and stayed off stage too much to become truly interesting to me. Commander Jattan P'Tal eventually develops into someone fairly interesting. The other major villain (Zuhl) is the most interesting character in the entire series. He's got a solid backstory, credible motivation, and feels authentic and three-dimensional.
As for plot, I like the basic premise: Archmage Barnabas Cedric, who lived 2000 years ago, put into motion (before his death) a series of signs, tests, trainings, and "gifts" so that our hero Alexander could finish killing Archmage Phane Reishi, who has been hibernating in sleep status for 2000 years. He is awakened in the first chapter, and from then until the end, it's a rush to kill him (and to kill Zuhl, and all the demonic creatures).
So, on the upside, fast pace, likable characters, vivid monsters, and decent premise.
On the downside, the author's writing style bears improvement. It is prosaic and slightly sermonizing /condescending. He seems to have a libertarian anti-government mindset and an immature view of government officials (they are mostly all corrupt, all these selfish "petty nobles"). The writing style leaves nothing to interpretation, as the author spells out each new step in the plot and explaining the good nature of each protagonist (because we couldn't figure that out by what they did?). The author reveals far too many of the hero's thoughts and feelings. Furthermore, he repeats the same feelings and thoughts several times (a pet peeve). The characters are fairly flat. The hero is far too good. Where's the character growth? The dialogue is vapid and interspersed liberally with "he looked him in the eye" and sound bites echoed from his childhood -- teachings from " dad" in the form of brief proverbs. Vocabulary is sometimes anachronistic (mom and dad, gravity, adrenaline, "man up" and "you guys"). I like his vivid descriptions, but they do go on too long.
Still, despite this, I've read far worse. I felt compelled to read several books in the series, skipping some of them to get to the last book.
"Nothing Original, But Enjoyable None The Less"
I’ve been meaning to write a review of each of the book in the Seven Isles series, but just haven’t seemed to get around to it. Now that I completed it, I have decided to write a review of the entire series instead. I guess as a whole I would best describe The Seven Isles as The Wheel Of Time Lite. With much of the same concepts, evil returns to the world, as a young hero and his friends take up the unwanted duties to save mankind, the Seven Isles doesn’t have quite the depth of Robert Jordan’s novels.
Books one and two are much the same, and center around the young hero Alexander. After his brother is murdered, he returns home to find that an evil Arch Mage has arisen from the dead, and Alexander is the long lost ancestor of an ancient king, the only person who can defeat the mage. Predictably, our young hero wants nothing to do with saving the world, but the Arch Mageforces his hand by sending evil forces to kill him. The story stays exclusively with Alexander’s character in the first two books as he and his friends run for their lives. The story almost becomes comical as they are repeatedly attacked by both men and creatures. It seems that our band of heroes can only walk mere steps before another attack comes from soldiers, wizards, demons, dragons, and wild animals. At one point they are attacked by a swarming hive of bees. Each time they barely survive and must heal themselves with magic or potions. It really became a bit ridiculous the amount of times characters should have died only to healed just in time. Despite these things, for some reason I still found myself enjoying the books enough to continue.
Books three and four of the series mark a vast improvement. After two books of following only Alexander, the book suddenly opens up to include the view points of other characters. The best of these are Alexander’s new wife Isabel, and his sister Abigail. The story improves greatly from this point as plots begin to take form, and the group does less running and hiding. Alexander begins to strengthen his magic, and his friends find they have some powers as well.
Books five and six form a bit of a lull in the series as Alexander is either injured or in the custody of one enemy or another for much of the two books. He learns to project his image to anywhere in the world, and spends much of these two books helping the others from afar. The other character blossom more in this book, which was a good thing, but waiting for Alexander to return to the action got a little old. Secondary plots are given more time as Alexander is away.
The seventh and final book is by far the best of the series as our heroes prepare for and execute the final battle with evil. The final battle is drawn out nicely, and most plots are put to rest nicely so the the world may live happily ever after.
Overall, despite this story not being the most complex or original, it redeemed itself with likable characters and an overall enjoyable feel to it. Yes the good characters were good beyond the point of saints, and the evil were predictably wicked, but I found myself enjoying the series more and more as I went along. I almost gave up on this series after book two, but for some reason I found myself wanting to continue on. By the end I found the Seven Isles to be very rewarding listen.
"A great read"
I am not much for writing reviews, but when I find a book that really takes me into their world, then I do. For me, this is one of those books where I am present with the characters. It is magical when that happens.Looking forward to book two.Magic fascinates me. Within these pages, magic is not felt through the story. Magic is told. I really do enjoy feeling the magic, the body, texture and the difficulty in mastering. The author fails to bring magic alive. Instead Alex (the main character) learns from a book and a statue that comes to life. That said, perhaps in book two the connection will be better made.
A better written story the plot is fine but the writing style is very basic. For example all emotion is stated and then the charecters continue chatting as if they are not a experiencing those emotions.
"Nothing particularly fresh or original"
No probably not. Narrator is good.
The story is fairly simple and uninspired. Even the big action sections had me far from on the edge of my seat. I found Alexander too nice and angelic. Characters were either all good or all bad...not particularly convincing. The main story just seemed very unoriginal, taking bits and pieces from other books and rejigging them a bit.
I thought the performance was good. Not much to dislike.
Didn't gain any great affinity to any of the characters to be honest. Take your pick.
If I were you I wouldn't bother with this book. It is a pretty unconvincing, uncompelling and flat story. Many better alternatives out there. Personal favourite fantasy book series would be Patrick Rothfuss and the Kingkiller Chronicle for a hero based story or the Game of Thrones books for a much more convincing and interesting set of characters and relationships.
"More Drivel in a competative genre."
I didn't , after 7 hours I gave in. I hate what seems like nice suburban attitudes and nicey nicey ness being applied to medieval/ fantasy worlds. people in the world do not act like this and it makes it hard to relate to. I have nothing against the author but people don't think or act like soaps.
the people there mentality and attitude. I have a joint degree in politics and history, have read first and second hand source material of people from the tenth century all the way to the Napoleonic wars. (not every year obviously) people based in the medieval / renaissance era which is the closest I can relate this fantasy world to just wouldn't act like this. I know each author can just say well it my world people will act like this but its just odd and off putting. almost like reading a children's book with all the sharp edges taken out to save my fragile mind.
Steven Brand is a good narrator
well Americans will make a TV/movie out of just about anything so you never know do you.
With authors i mean top notch authors like Jennifer Fallon, Terry GoodKind, Robert Jordan, Anthony Ryan, Patrick Rothfuss and may many more out there this sloppy slow paced stuff just doesn't measure up. there seems to be more poor Fantasy / fiction genres than others and its getting tiring.
"Very good start to the series"
Full of imagination, villainous wizards,and monsters from start to end I do want to know what happens next.
The unexpected was a sentence that completely took me by surprise, Whilst not portrayed as YA I was taken aback when the young couple both agreed to wait until they were married before they took their relationship further. What! We'd just had entrails and body parts flying, I'm not looking for a sex scene but for pity's sake What! She could have smiled said goodnight and shut the door.
Maybe I'm reading too many raunchy novels.... no I don't think so. from that strange ( to me statement) it's a very good series and you could give it to your 14 year olds to read as long as you don't mind them reading about stomachs being cut open arms and legs and heads being cut off...
"The return of the king!"
This is a well performed book, Derek Perkins voice initially doesn't sound right for the book but grew on me to the extent that I am now working my way through the seven book series.
The obvious comparison here has to be Tolkien, but that would be a mistake. I think it's more in line with David Gemmell but at the end of the day, they all do hold their origins in Tolkien. I think Wells' prose is better than JRR in that very little is wasted in terms of description and so far, there are no blind alleys (think Tom Bombadil).
I like Derek's characterisation for the majority of characters, he plays the lead Alexander as a teen with an old head on his shoulders but still with the youthful voice.
Lord Fein's Foul!
I enjoyed this so much, I'm listening to the entire series. Also, in case you're wondering, my Headline is a reference to how much the book is derivative of Tolkien - ever since the Lord of the Rings, it appears that every fantasy has to feature the Return of a King, everyone of the leads is royalty in some form....
"A Quest indeed"
Like most of the stories I like, this one grips you from the first paragraph and doesn't let go until the end.. Narrated brilliantly. An excellent read.
Yes, interesting theme with many twists and turns
the variety of characters and heros
to many to individualise
Listened to all 7 books excellent story
If you can allow for some repetition of mantra's this is an entertaining story not the best but good enough to go on to the next one
an easy book to listen to. The narrator brings the characters to life. Awaiting the next with baited breath
"Well the story of magic"
I would rank the thinblade in my top 15 I would put it up they with before they hang
iPad Finley Juel Crombies for the home due to the adventure and magical content. With fast paced storyline and get interested throughout
Alexander is my favourite because as well as being A Ventures
His conscience makes him feel a real person with out getting boring and tedious
They are times when sarcasm made me laugh to myself
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