Wednesday, February 15, 2012
Theft of Swords by Michael J. Sullivan
Title/Author: Theft of Swords (The Riyria Revelations #1-2) by Michael J. Sullivan
Publisher/Date published: Orbit, November 23rd 2011
How I got this book: received it from the publisher through NetGalley
Goodreads summary: "Royce Melborn, a skilled thief, and his mercenary partner, Hadrian Blackwater, make a profitable living carrying out dangerous assignments for conspiring nobles — until they are hired to pilfer a famed sword. What appears to be just a simple job finds them framed for the murder of the king and trapped in a conspiracy that uncovers a plot far greater than the mere overthrow of a tiny kingdom.
Can a self-serving thief and an idealistic swordsman survive long enough to unravel the first part of an ancient mystery that has toppled kings and destroyed empires in order to keep a secret too terrible for the world to know?
And so begins the first tale of treachery and adventure, sword fighting and magic, myth and legend."
This book is part of a self-published success story! Michael J. Sullivan self-published the entire Riyria Revelations series (which is 6 books in total I believe) and sold them THOUSANDS of times! Seriously, I saw the number 50.000 come up somewhere! I'm not sure if it's correct, but still, that's amazing! And now the series is going to be published by Orbit. So yeah, I'd say big success!
You guys probably know I'm a sucker for a good epic fantasy and I had heard floating around that this was an EPIC series. And when I saw that the ebook was over 700 pages, I thought, well, at least it's BIG enough to be epic!
And then I failed to register that it was actually 2 books in one.
Which makes a BIG difference.
I mean, when I started it, it was a bit too slow for my tastes. But sometimes with these 700 page books you get a lot of build up and then lots of awesomeness, so that's what I was holding out for. Until the story started reaching a climax around 300 pages in and I noticed it was actually 2 books in one. And I'm sad to say the second book was also REALLY slow. I mean, there's a lot of flowery language, which doesn't really work for me, and not a lot of dialogue going on. Of course the scene needs to be set, but I found myself skipping parts of this and it made the plot creep along at a turtle's pace.
Also, I guessed something at the very start book 1 that was revealed around the end of book 2. There are some not so subtle hints and it got me wondering if the characters were A) Really dense or B) Completely blind, not to pick up on them. Another thing that bothered me is that with all the description of their surroundings, I never once got the feeling of knowing the two main characters Royce and Hadrian. They remain mysterious and I'm not even sure what age they're supposed to be (this is kind of a pet peeve of mine, as I don't know how to place them in society then).
I did however like the storyline and a couple of the supporting characters. And I absolutely loved that the all-powerful wizard in the story has a serious handicap! So while he comes and goes as he pleases, he's not some deus ex machina mechanism, which made me happy. There is a lot of intrigue going in, which should be interesting.
While this was an enjoyable read, the characters didn't scream LOVE ME! (though Hadrian sort of whispered it) at me and I kinda want to love the characters. I had just expected more epicness I think.
My rating: 3 stars