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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great action sequences
Firstly, I must point out that I am new to this series, so I do not know what happened in the previous books. Thanks to Star Wars director George Lucas, I have never had a problem in joining a saga a few episodes in.

Barclay's story is told from a multi-perspective narrative, and despite the initially tricky challenge of getting used to characters and their...
Published 20 months ago by Daniel Cann

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Elves at war. A lot.
Some seven hundred years after the events of the last book, Elf leaders Auum and Takaar have gone their separate ways, disagreements of magic being the root of their differences.
But now their Elven homelands are once again under threat from the Wytch Lords and they must take the fight to Balaia, lands of the humans. And there is lots of fighting, elves and their...
Published 21 months ago by Nick Brett


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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great action sequences, 6 July 2013
This review is from: Elves: Beyond the Mists of Katura (Paperback)
Firstly, I must point out that I am new to this series, so I do not know what happened in the previous books. Thanks to Star Wars director George Lucas, I have never had a problem in joining a saga a few episodes in.

Barclay's story is told from a multi-perspective narrative, and despite the initially tricky challenge of getting used to characters and their names, I soon picked things up. That is testament to Barclay's skill as a writer of fantasy fiction. The culture, politics, tactics and personalities of all involved, totally engaged. This is a very well constructed world, inhabited by believable people.

Where this novel really shines, is in its action sequences. The desperation of battle is captured well, and so are its consequences. I thoroughly enjoyed an early sea battle, and the action and incident did not let up for hardly one moment.

With plenty of infighting, factions, debates and strong personalities involved, reader interest is assured. These elves are not the cool, distant, androgynous types of the cinema, but rough, tough, fiercely passionate experts of all forms of combat.

The responsibility of leadership and tough decision making is embodied in the rather dour Auum. Contrast this with the troubled brilliance and destructiveness of Takaar and you have a heady combination.

Friendship and camaraderie are also explored through warriors Auum and Ulysan. Again, dialogue and actions convince, also remember, elves live for hundreds of years, so feelings run very deep.

With its breakneck action and emotional punch, I am sure Elves: Beyond the Mists of Katura will delight existing fans. As an initiate to the series, I can say that I enjoyed a thoroughly entertaining read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Elves are back, 16 Jun. 2013
By 
Parm (A bookshop near you) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Elves: Beyond the Mists of Katura (Paperback)
Review

I have been a fan of James Barclays work since 1999 when Dawnthief first hit the book shelves. His style so reminiscent of my then favourite author David Gemmell. The characters flawed but heroic, larger than life yet down to earth. The action fast and furious and the body count high. And yet despite that there has been something that has niggled at me since Once walked with Gods, a feeling that he had strayed from his earlier writing prowess.

With Beyond the Mists of Katura I think I have finally nailed the problem, The characters are still great, the writing fast yet sparse where needed and powerful and emotional where required. The plot pushes ahead at a furious pace and the body count leaves me wondering if there will be anyone left alive.

The niggle i fnally figured out is with the Elves themselves, whilst they are not unbeatable, despite their near immortality and their legendary fighting prowess. Its the constant description of an elf in fighting mode, there are only so many times you need to read about what part of what hand or foot or throwing knife did what damage. The action is too intimate, it needs to be pulled back to the broader picture sometimes, and have more of the emotional depth of the scenes at the end. The finale with Auum is simply excellent. Takaar is also such an excellent character, so flawed so damaged by his long life and so dangerous no one can predict his next action, perfect fodder for a great story. The book brings the whole series plot full circle back to Dawnthief, and ends the cycle. I think this is a good thing, I'd like to see James break away again as his did with the blooming excellent Ascendants of Estorea.

Would I recommend?

Yes to all existing fans of James Barclay, for newbies, i think you need to start at the beginning, I would have been a little lost and overcome by the battles if not for the back story.

overall a 4/5 for the end of a series

(Parm)

http://parmenionbooks.wordpress.com/2013/06/16/james-barclay-beyond-the-mists-of-katura-review/
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars One to read to bring the tale to conclusion, 30 Jun. 2013
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Culmination - apparently of the trilogy -or is there more?The story line flowed as expected from Barclay, not taking 90 per cent of the book to build to the conclusion and ten per cent action and finale but a good steady progression to climax which saw the goodies winning and the baddies coming second in this instalment, but not necessarily totally out of the picture. Hence the -is there more? comment. This book has not left me gagging for the next, which the previous in the series did. That said on Barclays previous trilogies (or more) I had the same feeling of temporary closure when the 'final' book came. I feel sure that there will be more of the same from JB which I will read, mostly cause the are fun and easy to relate to the characters. Having given nothing away regarding the story line it is left to the individual to read the book and reach their own conclusion - enjoy -I did!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Elves at war. A lot., 21 May 2013
By 
Nick Brett (Wiltshire, England) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
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This review is from: Elves: Beyond the Mists of Katura (Paperback)
Some seven hundred years after the events of the last book, Elf leaders Auum and Takaar have gone their separate ways, disagreements of magic being the root of their differences.
But now their Elven homelands are once again under threat from the Wytch Lords and they must take the fight to Balaia, lands of the humans. And there is lots of fighting, elves and their enhanced abilities against human might and magic.
I am a fan of the aurhor's books, but this felt like a film where there are a number of set piece action scenes but without enough in-between to carry them. There is nobility and humour which Mr Barclay always does well but for some reason this one didn't grip me like previous ones. So not bad, but lacking something for me.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Review, 23 Dec. 2013
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S. Rogers "steve" (uk) - See all my reviews
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If you have not read this series of books, you are in for a treat and I'm very jealous. They are quite simply brillant.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good Read, 9 Nov. 2013
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Really good read but having read all of Barclay's books, I put this behind all of his original Raven books. He might struggle to find another Raven!
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5.0 out of 5 stars brilliant!, 16 Jun. 2014
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Another great book from an amazing author! Please write some more Raven novels.
No one does it better than James
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5.0 out of 5 stars Good Book, 6 Jun. 2014
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This book is well written the ending is not unexpected but althoough written as a trilogy the ending leaves the opportunity for follow ups to be written at a later date
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5.0 out of 5 stars The best series yet, 29 May 2014
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I have read so many books about magic, elves and men etc. that so many just blur into the same type of story. Not so here. In a stunning prequel to all of the raven stories from Barclay, there are characters whose emotion leaps off the page at you. Pace of story and action that passes the pages before you realise how long you have been reading for. Everything that I have wanted in a series has been played out here. I do not write reviews as you can probably tell from the gushing blurb above, however this series is quite simply the one that I have enjoyed the most.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant as usual, 7 April 2014
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The first book I read of James Barclay was, Dawnthief and I was engrossed as much then as I have been through the Elves trilogy. Plenty of fast paced action, sprinkled with humour, sorrow and magic, all things to keep a reader awake till the small hours of the morning thinking just one more chapter then sleep, but ,then sleep happened less than, just one more chapter.
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Elves: Beyond the Mists of Katura
Elves: Beyond the Mists of Katura by James Barclay (Paperback - 16 May 2013)
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