Review of Chronicles of the Unhewn Throne (the trilogy)

The Last Mortal Bond (Chronicle of the Unhewn Throne, #3)The Last Mortal Bond by Brian Staveley

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

 

 

The Providence of Fire (Chronicle of the Unhewn Throne, #2)The Providence of Fire by Brian Staveley
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

 

The Emperor's Blades (Chronicle of the Unhewn Throne, #1)The Emperor’s Blades by Brian Staveley

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

 

Chronicle of the Unhewn Throne

by Brian Staveley (Goodreads Author)
4.44  ·  Rating Details ·  9 Ratings  ·  1 Review

Includes: The Emperor’s Blades, The Providence of Fire, The Last Mortal Bond, and an excerpt from the forthcoming Skullsworn

“An enchanting union of old and new, Staveley’s debut will keep you turning pages late into the night.” Pierce Brown, New York Times bestselling author of Red Rising

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.

The Emperor’s Blades — Three siblings: Kaden, the heir to the Unhewn Throne, has spent eight years sequestered in a remote mountain monastery. An ocean away, Valyn endures the brutal training of the Kettral. At the heart of the empire, Adare hunts those who murdered her father.

The Providence of Fire — Kaden infiltrates the Annurian capital, while Adare flees the Dawn Palace in search of allies to challenge the coup against her family. As armies prepare to clash, the threat of invasion compels the rival forces to unite. Unknown to Adare, Valyn has allied with the invading nomads.

The Last Mortal Bond — The ancient csestriim are back to finish their purge of humanity; armies march against the capital; capricious gods walk the earth in human guise, but the imperial siblings at the heart of it all soon understand that there may be no reconciling their conflicting visions of the future.

 

MY REVIEW:

This review is for all three books, the story as a whole. First, I am regretful that I didn’t finish The Emperor’s Blades the first time I started it. While I didn’t give up because I hated it, I just simply couldn’t get into it. However, I am forever grateful that I picked up Book One a second time and finished the trilogy last night.

I’m still in awe after finishing and maybe that is why I’m of the opinion that right now, I would probably read anything Brian Staveley writes.

The story follows three children of an Emperor who are all separated and being raised in very different circumstances. The chapters throughout all three books are mostly from the POV’s of each child. While the three siblings are the main characters and the drivers of the story, there are so many characters that each of them have in their lives that contributed so much to the story as well. In fact, Valyn’s Wing, they were a really huge part of the story and what a different story it would have been without them.

Kaden: Being raised in a monastery with monks. He didn’t have it easy and my heart hurt for him. I liked Kaden a lot. I liked his umial, Rampuri Tan a lot. Even though he beat the shit out of Kaden, both mentally and physically, he was loyal to him until the end. Kaden is the oldest (which I didn’t realize until some time into first book) and is in line as heir to the Emperor. I guess his father sent him to this awful place to learn…something. Certainly not enough about being an Emperor. When Kaden’s father is killed a mission is set from both the good and the bad to retrieve Kaden from Ashklan and bring him back to take his rightful place on the Unhewn Throne. Doesn’t really work out that way. If I say much more it will ruin it for anyone who hasn’t read it. I hated the end because Kaden had been through SO MUCH SHIT and then to end it the way it ended…I was too mad to cry.

Adare: Ugh. I tried to like her and in the beginning I guess I did. I’ll be honest and say when her chapters came I was always ready to take a break or found myself begrudgingly tackling it. Thankfully it wasn’t all Adare all the time and that helped in keeping me engaged in her chapters. She was the child that got to stay home in the palace and be raised as a Princess. She made some really poor decisions and overall was just so stupid in her thinking that I wanted her to just get killed (I know I’m an awful person). I feel like she was the pivot point for why a lot of the shit happened the way it did. She had so many opportunities to kill Il’ Tornja (the bastard) and she didn’t. When it came to her child, I became more understanding of her idiocy but really…and what really pissed me off is the way it ended for her. All roses. All the time. No consequences for her actions. *stabs knife in air*

Valyn: My favorite. I loved him and he really had it the hardest, I think, out of all three. He got a little fucked up towards the end, but can you blame him? He was so strong and didn’t take shit from anyone. He knew what he wanted and at the end, I think he got it. He was where he belonged. The mere thought of him staying at the palace with Adare made me want to poke my eyeballs out with a spoon. Valyn’s chapters were my favorite and they did not disappoint. So much action and so much bloody violence. I was rooting him on the entire way. Kill Adare, kill Adare!!! He wanted to. He should have.

So the other characters that made this story. Valyn’s Wing, especially Gwenna, Annick and Talal. Those three never stopped and they just kept kicking ass through the entire book. There were so many times I held my breath thinking one of them was going to die. So many times. I may have closed the book at that point. Haha – just kidding. Just thought I should give these three a recognition award cause they freaking deserve it.

There were a lot of characters, as I said above, that really were an integral part of the story. I just don’t want to run through each of them or this review will get to wordy and too full of spoilers.

I will mention that motherfucker Balendin, the leach. I LOATHED HIM! He was a sick bastard. His end however, fell a little flat for me. All this work up to his death and then, well, to be honest he didn’t suffer enough. Adare could have redeemed herself if she had killed him.

While some of the reviews found the third book a disappointment, I really didn’t. I really loved all three books. Until the very end. The end just fell flat for me on a number of things. I expected more. I expected more justice, more redemption for the losses and certainly more punishment. I expected more happiness and a better outcome for the three (two) siblings. 😀 I don’t know where Gwenna, Annick and Talal ended up. Did they go back to the island? Did they get medals? They should have. 🙂 I don’t know if the Flea and his Wing died or what. They carried them the infirmary but did they live? Were they already dead? Did the Spear collapse? Were the Gods grateful for what Kaden and Triste sacrificed for them? SO MANY UNANSWERED QUESTIONS! I kinda got the impression that Mr. Staveley was tired by the last chapter and just ended it quick to get it over with. I’m sure that wasn’t the case and I don’t hold it against him because the trilogy as a whole was absolutely amazing and I truly loved it. Bought all three so I can have them to reread upon demand. I don’t buy them unless I love them (well most of the time).

Seriously though, Brian Staveley, why couldn’t you have switched the fates of Kaden and Adare?? Yes…I’m still grieving.

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Game of Thrones

I have taken the last three weeks watching then entire 6 seasons of Game of Thrones.  I read the books and honestly didn’t enjoy the fourth and fifth book.  The series on HBO was amazing!! The season starts up again in June and I am so looking forward to it.

Then last week we were on vacation on a family ski trip in Vermont.  Fun!

Anyway, wanted to post a quick status update.  I’m midway through the second book in Peter Brett’s Demon Cycle, this one called The Desert Spear.  I am also in the midst of reading Brian Stavely’s Chronicles of the Unhewn Throne, the first book (The Emperor’s Blade?).  These two books are making me so happy, they are equally great.  Reviews to come upon completion.

Review of The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms (Inheritance #1)

The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms (Inheritance, #1)The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms by N.K. Jemisin

Yeine Darr is an outcast from the barbarian north. But when her mother dies under mysterious circumstances, she is summoned to the majestic city of Sky. There, to her shock, Yeine is named an heiress to the king. But the throne of the Hundred Thousand Kingdoms is not easily won, and Yeine is thrust into a vicious power struggle.

 

My Review:

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I would give this 3.5 stars. It was good. Not great (like mind blown great) but good. The story was slow to develop but evenly paced until the end. It’s hard to explain how I feel about this first book because it wasn’t an action packed book but it also wasn’t boring. I found it interesting and well written. I liked the characters; didn’t love Yeine or become attached to her. Nahodath I liked very much. The world building was just ok. Like other slower moving stories I didn’t find or feel that I wasted my time reading this. I rather enjoyed it on some deeper level. Ok then, let’s see what The Broken Kingdoms (Book 2) brings.

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Review of The Warded Man (The Demon Cycle #1)

The Warded Man (Demon Cycle, #1)The Warded Man by Peter V. Brett

Goodreads Description:

The Warded Man (The Demon Cycle #1)

by Peter V. Brett (Goodreads Author)
As darkness falls after sunset, the corelings rise—demons who possess supernatural powers and burn with a consuming hatred of humanity. For hundreds of years the demons have terrorized the night, slowly culling the human herd that shelters behind magical wards—symbols of power whose origins are lost in myth and whose protection is terrifyingly fragile. It was not always this way. Once, men and women battled the corelings on equal terms, but those days are gone. Night by night the demons grow stronger, while human numbers dwindle under their relentless assault. Now, with hope for the future fading, three young survivors of vicious demon attacks will dare the impossible, stepping beyond the crumbling safety of the wards to risk everything in a desperate quest to regain the secrets of the past. Together, they will stand against the night.

My Review:

My rating: 4 of 5 starsI really, really liked this one. Like, a lot. I’ve wanted to read this series for awhile. My only regret is not reading it sooner. Can’t wait to read the next one.

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Review of Senlin Ascends (Book Books of Babel #1)

Senlin Ascends (The Books of Babel, #1)Senlin Ascends by Josiah Bancroft

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Ok so I’m torn between 3.5 and 4 stars.

I liked it well enough and certainly the last 100 pages were pretty great and helped boost my rating. I had a hard time with the beginning; not loving it. Part of it was the lack of excitement and lack of grieving at the loss Tom suffered. He handled it better than any reality and at times seemed to forget about it. Part of it was the strangeness.

Slowly, the story get not only weirder (in a good way that I was becoming familiar with) but more exciting. My indifference began to turn into like and then a stronger like. I began reflecting how well the whole thing came together and how great the writing was. I began reading faster.

I’ll be honest, I was disappointed with the end and that poor Tom didn’t find what he lost in the very beginning. I thought for sure after all the shit he went through he (and me) would be rewarded. I guess that’s why you have to read Book 2!

This book definitely played with my mind. It was unique and nothing went as expected. The betrayal, the mistrust, the coldness. It all left me a little…I don’t know. This author though, for his debut novel, has a bright future.

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Review of Winter Tide (The Innsmouth Legacy #1)

Winter Tide (The Innsmouth Legacy, #1)

Winter Tide by Ruthanna Emrys

My rating: 1 of 5 stars

 

 

I received this book from NetGalley in return for an honest review. DNF at 20%. This book was just not for me and I had a hard time staying engaged. It started interesting enough with the bookstore owner, Charlie, and his assistant, Aphra, attending an estate sale where they are looking through old books. But unfortunately when they went to the beach and Aphra started some kind of magic in moving the wind and explaining the water people and the land people and the flashbacks to Innsmouth, I just couldn’t stay interested. I see much of the reviews for this book relate it to H.P. Lovecraft’s work, which I haven’t read nor am I familiar with, and perhaps that is the reason for the disconnect. This did get a lot of good reviews with high ratings, but not my kind of story.

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