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The Ladies of Mandrigyn (The Sun Wolf and Starhawk Series Book 1) [Kindle Edition]

Barbara Hambly
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)

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Book Description

A brilliant mercenary must lead his army against the forces of the most powerful wizard alive

Gifted with courage, strength, and the intelligence to know when to fight, Sun Wolf is the greatest mercenary in a land overrun by war. With his first lieutenant, Starhawk—a woman more deadly than any man—at his side, he has laid waste to countless cities, taking the best of their treasures for himself, and distributing the rest among his bloodthirsty crew.
 
Then a woman comes to him, an emissary from the town of Mandrigyn, a lush port city recently sacked by a powerful, mad wizard of unmatched abilities. She offers Sun Wolf untold riches for the use of his army, but the captain is not fool enough to wage war against a magician. He refuses her offer, but that is not the end of it. The women of Mandrigyn can be very persuasive.
 
This ebook features an illustrated biography of Barbara Hambly, including rare photos and never-before-seen documents from the author’s personal collection.



Editorial Reviews

Review

“Barbara is a fabulously talented writer who can write well in any genre.” —Charlaine Harris

From the Inside Flap

When the women of the City of Mandrigyn, led by Sheera Galernas, hired the mercenary army of Captain Sun Wolf, to help them rescue their men from the mines of evil, he refused. Little did he realize how insistent the ladies could be, and how far they would go to persuade him to train them against the evil of Altiokis....

Product Details

  • File Size: 933 KB
  • Print Length: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Open Road Media Sci-Fi & Fantasy (March 29, 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004TC14C8
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #253,280 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
28 of 28 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars One of Hambley's best! June 4, 2003
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This book, which I stumbled onto some years back in a used bookstore, has to be one of Hambley's best efforts, and that is saying something from such a talented and diverse author. This is a different kind of fantasy book, not about awe-inspiring heroes or mighty wizards, but one told from the viewpoint of an ordinary everyday soldier, who turns out to not be so ordinary. It details the life and philosophies of a mercenary, which is not common in fantasy literature. The characters are well-written and fully fleshed out, very believable. The main character, Capt. Sun Wolf, is one of the best "everyman" characters in print. His efforts to train a group of women how to fight to rescue their men are the central focus of most of the book, and it is wonderful to see how his attitudes change throughout the book. The main female characters are strongly written, and the central female character, Sheera, is one of the unforgettable characters in fanstasy literature. The tale of love between the capt and his second-in-comman Starhawk, both believing the other has no feelings for them, is heartwrenchingly beautiful and gripping. All in all, this story introduces the reader to a world that feels so real you almost expect to open a door and enter it. And the main plot twist of the secret of magical power is so shocking that it is doubtful the reader will know it's coming. This is a great story, and I highly recommend it to anyone lucky enough to find it in some old dusty bookstore.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Women will love this book July 24, 2000
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Why? Because there are so many fantastic female characters! Instead of being stuck choosing between the roles of damsel-in-distress, wicked stepmother, or femme fatale, Hambly's female characters are diverse, powerful, and human. Which is not to slight her men! They, too, are excellently fleshed out characters with a combination of endearing and repulsive traits. While the plot is somewhat predictable, there are enough twists to keep you turning the pages. It's a shame that Amazon reports this book being out-of-print because it's one of Hambly's best.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Ladies of Mandrigyn - a winner June 1, 2001
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This book has become one of my perennial favorites, along with its sequels, "The Witches of Wenshar" and "The Dark Hand of Magic." Hambly does an exquisite job of building believable characters in her believable fantasy world, and the realism of their inner and outward conflicts are almost always absolutely true to their own nature. My copies of Ladies as well as Witches and Dark Hand are so worn that I regret the books are out of print, as I would gladly replace my tattered copies. By all means anyone looking for a good read should hunt down the Ladies of Mandrigyn.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding fiction! September 25, 2007
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
I only just recently "discovered" Barbara Hambly, when a friend loaned me "Dragonsbane". Where has Hambly been all my life??!! After reading "Dragonsbane" I went looking for more, and I am absolutely delighted to have found "The Ladies of Mandrigyn".

This is an absolutely riveting tale, with a striking couple at its center. As with "Dragonsbane", some ingredients of the mix cause it to masquerade as cheap fantasy thriller fiction (the central characters are named Sun Wolf and Star Hawk, for instance...) But the depth and realism of the characterisations, and the complexity of the story as it unfolds, soon set the book apart from - far above - the average.

Hambly starts the book in the center of a mercenary warrior band, with Sun Wolf as the chief. The mercenaries are a convincing welter of characters, and the absolute ascendancy of the chief is clear. But as the story unfolds, we gradually get snippets of Sun Wolf's childhood with a bullying father, and his hidden artistic and mystical leanings. These are revealed without lessening his warrior status.

Likewise, his second in command slowly gains more depth and detail. From the original sketch of a woman who has built a reputation for deadliness and taciturnity, she develops into an internally vulnerable, highly intelligent woman, an ex-nun with a meditation habit, and the ability to put honesty before comfort.

Hambly's story of a group of women in an occupied city, sent to hire a mercenary band to liberate their people, and their interaction with the mercenaries soon turns into a twisty tale of human motivations and conflicts. Her delicate treatment of the clash of different cultures and beliefs reminds me of the work of Orson Scott Card (this is high praise).
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars "What in the name of the cold hells is this?" --Sun Wolf December 21, 1997
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This is the most gripping, vivid, richly colored book I have ever read. And this is only the first; the last (The Dark Hand of Magic) is easily on the same level. I've read the series six times and will read it again. Not because I am some kind of sick twisted individual, but because this novel seduces the die-hard fantasy reader, seizes one by the throat and drags one through "the dust and blood that hangs on everybody," as Adam Duritz says (albiet on a totally different subject). I love the weighty richness of Tad Williams, and I think TW's writing is of a higher order. But this book isn't trying to be a masterpiece; rather, it is what every good fantasy story should be--raw emotion barely contained. It's a roller coaster. You'll get choked up; you'll laugh with joy; you'll feel the rush.

No, this story won't hold your hand as it slowly weaves another world. It drops you in this other world. And Hambly uses beautifully original description for a genre that has been as stale as crouttons for... well, since Tolkien I guess. There's simply nothing else like it.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars solid
Good solid fantasy with believable characters you come to care for. The actions of the players and their consences ring true a good read
Published 2 months ago by cedric
2.0 out of 5 stars Not a good book
I read this book because of all the glowing recommendations it got, and the promise of strong female characters. It was sorely disappointing. Read more
Published 6 months ago by Claire Bendix
4.0 out of 5 stars Amazingly fun and affecting [possible spoilers]
I'll begin by saying that I loved this book. Fiercely. To the point I wasn't ready to let go when it came due at the library, so I ordered my own copy. Read more
Published 11 months ago by E. Smiley
5.0 out of 5 stars Sun Wolf and Star Hawk are rich characters
I read this book many years ago, looking for a good, fast-paced story set in a fantastic and universe. I was not disappointed with the book. Read more
Published 13 months ago by Aubrey G Looney
5.0 out of 5 stars Good action sword and sorcery book
Barbara Hambly, is great at writing classic exciting science fiction novels. I slightly prefer her Darwath series but this book is very similar in quality to her "Dragonsbane"... Read more
Published 15 months ago by David G
4.0 out of 5 stars a pleasant surprise
I picked this up on sale, not really expecting much. It turned out to be a really fun read. Nice to see a love story between two mature (non-teen) characters, along with some... Read more
Published 15 months ago by Bookwyrm
5.0 out of 5 stars Great fantasy
I don't usually like war story types of fantasies, but the characters kept me reading this one. Well-drawn characters and interesting plot line. Read more
Published 15 months ago by artstuff
4.0 out of 5 stars Actually liked this a lot more than I thought I would
Okay. So I bought this on sale in the kindle store thinking "Ah alright a buck, whatever." It turned out to be very good. Read more
Published 17 months ago by Katie
3.0 out of 5 stars Is there a cliche that was missed?
Move along, nothing (original) to see here...

An OK read, but hardly breaks any new ground. I found it difficult to be engaged by the book.
Published 18 months ago by Steve Salter
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Intro to Fantasy
This book was my first try at the fantasy genre and i was pleasantly surprised. Being a military veteran, I enjoyed Barbara's description of training and tactics to accomplish... Read more
Published 19 months ago by Michael Shelton
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