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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great start to the series
Like some other reviewers I found parts of this book not entirely convincing, but I was reading faster and faster, and looking up when the next book in the series is published before I had finished. Complex, enjoyable, and clearly setting the scene for a great series.
Published on 25 Mar 2008 by V. Nicholl

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18 of 22 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Ambitious world-building is let down by poor writing
Brought up on a wagon train, Isak is used to being hated and feared. His father blames him for the death of his mother in childbirth, and others see him only as a strong and unpredictable white-eye. His only friend is Carel, a former soldier turned trader who's training Isak to join the Ghosts, an elite band of soldier who serves Lord Farlan. When Isak arrived in Tirah...
Published on 11 Oct 2009 by I Read, Therefore I Blog


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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great start to the series, 25 Mar 2008
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V. Nicholl (London, UK) - See all my reviews
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Like some other reviewers I found parts of this book not entirely convincing, but I was reading faster and faster, and looking up when the next book in the series is published before I had finished. Complex, enjoyable, and clearly setting the scene for a great series.
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36 of 43 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Original approach and an explosive book, 11 Jun 2006
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This book does not follow any preconceived formulaes for fantasy fiction novels. Its new, its vibrant and it grips you from the very start. The world is so detailed it feels real, the fact that certain aspects, creatures none central to the plot are just accepted, written as though everyone should know about them, just makes it all the more believable. It makes the reader think in a good way. Politics and intrigues abound but don't overpower the story, aren't overly complicated so that they add lovingly to the plot rather than detract from it or take center stage. By the very nature of the key players violence is always just under the surface barely held in check. The characters have believeable flaws and fears that add depth and credibility. Equal time is given to character development, detailed and enthralling action scenes, politics, mysticism and magic. The Final result is awe inspiring, and beyond doubt the best book I have read since I first picked up david gemmels book Legend when that was first published over 10 years ago. I can not wait for its sequel.

The story centers arround Isak. Isak is a "White Eye" these are stronger faster and alot more violent versions of Humans that are especially born to be the God's representatives on earth, and defenders of the land. A wagon rat with a bleak childhood suddenly raised as Krann the chosen of the god Nartis and heir elect to Lord Bahl Lord of all the Farlan. Everyone wants to use and manipulate him. Its the age of Fulfillment and prophersy, but everyone has there own version, and everyone one of power, all the Gods try to influence it, and Isak for there own purposes. But all they end up making is something none of them intended, Isak has more power than intended but is not ruled by prophersy, or god inspired abmition, or anyone elses whim. The story is far far better than that. It is not your typical phrophercy sword and sorcery bout, it is much much better and a MUST read
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18 of 22 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Ambitious world-building is let down by poor writing, 11 Oct 2009
Brought up on a wagon train, Isak is used to being hated and feared. His father blames him for the death of his mother in childbirth, and others see him only as a strong and unpredictable white-eye. His only friend is Carel, a former soldier turned trader who's training Isak to join the Ghosts, an elite band of soldier who serves Lord Farlan. When Isak arrived in Tirah however, he finds that he's been chosen by Nartis, the God of Storms to be the heir (Krann) to Lord Bahl. Pitched into a world of privilege and prophecy, Isak finds himself thrust into a world where men and elves and Gods are in conflict with each other and he is regarded as the only saviour.

Ambitious world-building and story-telling on a huge scale means there is much that is impressive within this novel. Pitched from poverty to wealth and power, Lloyd uses Isak's journey to draw out the complex nature of The Land and its history. He is supported by a wide-ranging cast, of whom the most interesting are Lord Bahl who tutors Isak in magic and his duties, Carel the crusty ex-soldier and the only person Isak trusts and Tila, the high-born lady who serves Isak and tutors him in protocol and politics.

The problem is that there are too many characters at times and while there is a cast list at the back, I frequently found myself having to refer to it in order to keep the character relationships straight. There is also a lot of plot, at times too much, making it difficult to keep track of what is happening to whom and it doesn't help that Lloyd frequently head-hops between POVs within scenes, which is a distraction.

The battle scenes are brutal and well depicted and there's no doubting Lloyd's imagination. However there are times when it's not clear within the writing just what is going on and a key scene towards the end with Lord Bahl happens off-page, robbing it of resonance. While the ending promises an interesting follow-up, there needs to be more focus in the writing for it to remain an interesting read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars One of the best fantasy series of books of the last few years !, 5 Mar 2014
Not an instant love but please keep reading, soon develops into one of the best and creative series of books I've read in the last few years, a series to rival Joe Abercrombie at his best.

Huge characters, epic battles, Gods, demons and vampires, what more could you possibly want ?!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Pleasantly surprised, 19 Feb 2014
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Wasn't really too sure when I bought this book having never heard of the author before.

The more I read the more I enjoyed this book, I really came to sympathise with the main characters and by the time I had finished the book I just had to buy the next one in the series.

Good read for anyone who likes fantasy.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars takes time to get into, 19 Feb 2014
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enjoyed however it could be a little confusing, Once you were into the story it got better I shall read the next one
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Took a chance, 11 Feb 2014
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I had read all Peter V Bretts books and hoped this would be in the same genre. I was not dissapointed, my only gripe was the editing. Somebody needed to read it before publishing. Don't let his put you off from a good story. I have got the second one in the series to read next.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars As great as Elric:, 19 Dec 2013
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Isak just grabbed my imagination from start to finish, not faint praise from this seasoned fantasy reader, five stars awarded. I cannot wait to read of his further fate as leader of the whiteyes.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Some good writing on display, 29 Aug 2009
Whilst a few of the elements of the plot seemed confusing (not complex, just unclear), some very good descriptive writing made this superior to many of the current crop of fantasy writers. Characterization was above average, although was disappointed at one or two outcomes (my personal preference). I will definitely investigate the rest of the series.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good fun fantasy, 12 Feb 2008
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This is a cracking debut. A very decent high fantasy novel with plenty of action. The central character is well written, the world building is good and the plot becomes increasingly complex as the story progresses. Lots of politics, well crafted fight scenes and a petulent teenager with a berserker rage for a temper. Thoroughly enjoyable.
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