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The Invisible Ring (Black Jewels, Book 4) Mass Market Paperback – October 1, 2000

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The Invisible Ring (Black Jewels, Book 4) + Dreams Made Flesh (Black Jewels, Book 5) + Tangled Webs: A Black Jewels Novel
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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Roc (October 1, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0451458028
  • ISBN-13: 978-0451458025
  • Product Dimensions: 4.3 x 1.2 x 6.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (108 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #312,329 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews Review

In this engaging story of Jared, a Red-Jeweled Warlord and unwilling pleasure slave, Bishop returns to the world of her Black Jewels trilogy (Daughter of the Blood, Heir to the Shadows, and Queen of the Darkness). Jared, who has murdered his owner and attempted escape, is recaptured and sold to the mysterious Gray Lady. It soon becomes clear that Jared's new queen is not what she seems to be, and he joins with his fellow slaves--all of whom hide their own secrets--to protect the Gray Lady. During her desperate flight from Dorothea SaDiablo, the Black Widow intent on destroying her and claiming her territory, Jared comes to terms with his own demons and discovers what it means to be truly bonded to a queen.

Bishop uses her usual skill to move interesting, rounded characters through a well-drawn world. Although this is a standalone book, there are ties with the events of the trilogy, most especially the appearance of the compelling Daemon Sadi. The author still pulls no punches in describing the sexual violence and misery that are as much a part of this intricate world as the gender role-reversals and the often-agonizing demands of honor and magic. A pleasurable read for fans of emotionally charged fantasy who enjoy both complex characters and societies, and who are not averse to following characters through their struggles and achievements. --Luc Duplessis

About the Author

Anne Bishop made her first short fiction sale in 1988. Her most recent work has appeared in White Swan, Black Raven and 365 Scary Stories. She lives in upstate New York.

Customer Reviews

I love the world, the characters, and the stories.
Amazon Customer
The Black Jewels books and the accompanying novels, like this one, is a great series to read.
Terrie Way
The characters are less interesting, and the plot more predictable.
Artful Consumer

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

49 of 50 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 20, 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I read the Black Jewels trilogy when it first came out and thought it was about the best thing I'd read in a long time. Now Ms. Bishop comes out with The Invisible Ring, a story set in the same world as the trilogy, but hundreds of years before.
What some of the other reviews have suggested is that the characters weren't as well developed and they felt a bit "let down". Keep in mind that this is a *standalone* book and so Ms. Bishop did not have 3 books to develop characters. Also, only 2 of the same characters from the trilogy show up in Ring, and I think some were expecting something along the same thing. Don't listen to them! This book takes place essentially over a few weeks or months, NOT many years as the trilogy.
Others have already written about the plot, so I won't go into that here. Ms. Bishop has a website that has an excerpt of The Invisible Ring posted, so I suggest that you go read that for yourself!...
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35 of 38 people found the following review helpful By Mayfayre VINE VOICE on December 16, 2001
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Having read Ms. Bishop's Black Jewels Trilogy (and loved it), I thought that this book worked well as a prequel, and is probably the best way to introduce a new reader to the Black Jewels realms. I thought that the whole society was more concisely explained in this book. It also gives the backstory about the Grey Lady mentioned in the Trilogy.
This storyline is more straight-forward than the Trilogy. The characters in this book would seem to be easier for a new reader to understand (in that they're less exotic, everything being relative of course) and the realms are presented in a less complicated fashion, yet the book still gives an intriguing hint of of the depth and complexity of the Trilogy books. There are enough teases about Daemon Sadi, Lucivar Yaslana, Surreal, and the rest of the Trilogy characters to make reading the other books inevitable - even just to find out the outcome of Dorothea SaDiablo's machinations, not to mention learning whether or not Daemon Sadi's true love is ever born. And for the readers who've already read the Trilogy, the teases were nice reminders of what makes the Trilogy so special.
Even if you've stayed away from fantasy, this book is a good introduction to the genre, since there are enough points of familiarity for a new reader to feel confortable with. Best of all, if you enjoy this book, you have the three books of the Trilogy to look forward to!
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Dakota on April 21, 2006
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Fantasy novel THE INVISIBLE RING by Anne Bishop is a prologue to her beautiful and moving BLACK JEWELS TRILOGY, where powerful female witches rule the land and dangerous warlords serve them, in the bedroom and out.

In the INVISIBLE RING, Jared is a warlord who was tricked into serving as a pleasure slave for 9 years. Unable to bear the abuse any longer, he kills the queen witch who has enslaved him and is now sent to the slave auctions. There, the infamous and dreaded Grey Lady purchases him and several other slaves, and they begin a journey filled with mistrust, danger, upheaval, and deceit. Yet, they learn to work together, and Jared soon discovers that the Grey Lady is not what she seems.

This was an engaging story, and it was fantastic to revisit Bishop's world of dark-jeweled witches and warlords. I also enjoyed learning a little more about gorgeous, wicked Daemon Sadi (of THE BLACK JEWELS TRILOGY), who pops up here and there in several scene-stealing moments.

The only thing I didn't like is the rushed feel of the novel. For one, it briefly introduced the numerous slaves and other characters, who I couldn't always keep track of or distinguish from one another. That was distracting. I also felt some scenes were skimmed over, especially the final battle scene. But those aren't terrible flaws, and they didn't prevent me from enjoying Jared's story, which revolved around him earning his freedom, falling in love, and learning the secret of the invisible ring.

I'd definitely recommend this book for those interested in THE BLACK JEWELS TRILOGY and its follow-up, DREAMS MADE FLESH.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 6, 2001
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This book is a nice follow-up to Bishop's first three books. I liked that Daemon made a couple of cameo appearances in this book. As I had already read the first three, I understood a lot more about what that character was about and about Bishop's style. This also helped me to understand the protagonists of this book. The plot was predictable, mostly because book 3 of the series hints at it. That's okay, though. I prefer a book that I can count on to take me where I expect the story to go. In comparison to the other three, this book discusses more "average" characters, while the series discussed characters of extraordinary ability. I found their lack of abilities and having to resort to their wits on occasion to be refreshing.
I will be looking for future books by Anne Bishop and I hope she writes more books about Daemon's and Lucivar's adventures - pre-Janelle or post-Janelle.
By the way, Anne Bishop's strength is her character development. They are all outstandingly written and now that I'm finished reading all the books, I am finding that I miss the characters.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By J. Stern on October 16, 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I loved this book. From the time I started it until the time I put it down, I was drawn into its web.
The book takes place before Jaenelle's birth (and the Black Jewels trilogy) yet after Tersa's promise of Witch's coming.
It is the story of the witch and warlord who first devised the style of web described in the Queen of the Darkness. The web Daemon remembered from his past.
This book had a nice appearance from Daemon Sadi, mentions of other characters from the Black Jewels triology. It was also a wonderful story. It came from the point of view of the "normal" Blood of the land. These Blood do not all wear dark jewels, do not know if Kaeleer and Hell exist, do not know Witch is coming. It tells of the final Queen who resists Dorothea's taint in Tereille. Plus, it gives some nice background on the culture of the Blood.
Once again, Ms. Bishop has created a spellbinding story with wonderful characters who you love to love and love to hate.
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More About the Author

Anne Bishop is a winner of the William L. Crawford Memorial Fantasy Award, presented by the International Association for the Fantastic in the Arts.

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