The Emperor's Blades: Chronicle of the Unhewn Throne, Book 1 Audible Audiobook – Unabridged
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Audible Audiobook, Unabridged
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Now includes special bonus content. Stay tuned after the audiobook to hear “The Last Abbot of Ashk’lan,” a short story by Brian Staveley.
The emperor of Annur is dead, slain by enemies unknown. His daughter and two sons, scattered across the world, do what they must to stay alive and unmask the assassins. But each of them also has a life-path on which their father set them, destinies entangled with both ancient enemies and inscrutable gods.
Kaden, the heir to the Unhewn Throne, has spent eight years sequestered in a remote mountain monastery, learning the enigmatic discipline of monks devoted to the Blank God. Their rituals hold the key to an ancient power he must master before it's too late.
An ocean away, Valyn endures the brutal training of the Kettral, elite soldiers who fly into battle on gigantic black hawks. But before he can set out to save Kaden, Valyn must survive one horrific final test.
At the heart of the empire, Minister Adare, elevated to her station by one of the emperor's final acts, is determined to prove herself to her people. But Adare also believes she knows who murdered her father, and she will stop at nothing - and risk everything - to see that justice is meted out.
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|Listening Length||19 hours and 22 minutes|
|Audible.ca Release Date||January 14 2014|
|Best Sellers Rank|| #807 in Audible Books & Originals (See Top 100 in Audible Books & Originals) |
#9 in Military Fantasy
#99 in Epic Fantasy (Audible Books & Originals)
#235 in Epic Fantasy (Books)
Top reviews from Canada
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This is not a coming of age book. It’s a well written story focusing on the lives and training of the two sons and things are escalated due to the murder of their father the Emperor. I loved both characters and the supporting cast around them. There are many side characters that are interesting and pivotal to the story. There are also a number of mysteries in the book with the largest surrounding the Emperor’s death. They push the story along and hooked me in.
The fantasy elements themselves in this book are low key. There are many different gods and there is an underlying belief that they may affect things but for the most part this is a tale without god interference, without dragons (although a few non-earthly creatures exist) and largely without magic.
At the end of the day if you love fantasy fiction I can’t imagine you not loving this book.
The world he paints is a vivid one - a world once ruled by immortals who could craft creatures to do their bidding; giant birds with a wingspan of seventy feet that are ridden by black op-soldiers; monks and an Empire at the mercy of it's enemies. Only the Emperor's children can preserve what their predacessors have built.
The story follows the viewpoint of three characters; each unique in it's own way. The Emperor's heir is in the mountains; his brother is training to become a Kettral soldier; bird riding teams of raiders, and the sister is engaged heavily in the politics of their capital. THe writing itself is crisp and clear and leaves little to be desired.
The characters develop delightfully; no two characters tackle a problem the same way. There we also quite a few Red Herrings and surprises along the way.
Top reviews from other countries
I will not spoil any of the addictive plot lines or character traits, all I will say is I’m moving on to book two right now and I have found an author to rival George R R Martin and a World that is as captivating as Westeros!
Best fantasy I have read since `storm of swords ' It's original, complex and intriguing throughout. Somehow this book has managed to capture so many of my favourite elements from previous fantasy I have read and combine them to make this fantastic story. It delivers on so many levels, the short fast paced chapters work really well always ending with a hanger that just makes you turn the next page. The story is complex but the author delivers it in such a simple way, writing from 3 characters pov throughout all in the present tense (which is a refreshing change.) and despite it being the first in a trilogy (it's 2nd Jan 15,cannot wait.) the story is wrapped up beautifully, yes with hangers but you are not left frustrated.
Highly recommended for fans of 'Raven's Shadow', 'Kingkiller Chronicles', 'Magician' and 'A Song of Ice and Fire.'
More than this though, there are no massive exposition dumps near the start of the story, with it instead being spread at a very comfortable rate. There is perhaps one section near the middle of the book where there is a lot history in one go, but it had already been hinted at throughout, and really served to confirm my own thoughts and theories. Perhaps my favourite sections of the book were Valyn’s chapters. The group of characters at the Kettral are fantastic, and I look forward to reading more about them.
It reads like a coming of age story, but also enjoys the benefits of multiple perspectives, as well as a number of dark sub-plots. It remains twist-filled, with a good number of unexpected deaths and betrayals, as well as feeling somewhat more mature than a typical ‘coming of age’ novel. While the ending did not tie everything up, I found the ending far more satisfying than I usually do the first in a trilogy.
I will certainly recommend this book to anyone and everyone, and can’t wait to get started on Providence of Fire.
‘The Emperor’s Blades’, by Brian Staveley is the first in the Chronicles of the Unhewn Throne.
Maybe I could have pushed through if the pacing hadn't been so odd. Prince finds out his fathers been murdered and stays on an island to finish his special forces hunger games. It didn't ring true to me and it slowed the pace down to a crawl.