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Theft of Swords (Riyria Revelations, 1, 2) Hardcover – 2011

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 681 pages
  • Publisher: Orbit / SFBC (2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1617934798
  • ISBN-13: 978-1617934797
  • Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 5.7 x 1.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (525 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #398,569 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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More About the Author

After finding a manual typewriter in the basement of a friend's house, Michael J. Sullivan inserted a blank piece of paper and typed: It was a dark and stormy night. He was just eight years old at the time and mimicking Snoopy so we'll forgive the use of that overused opening. But the desire to fill the blank page and see what doors the typewriter keys would unlock wouldn't let him go. For ten years Michael developed his craft by studying authors such as Stephen King, Ernest Hemingway, and John Steinbeck. During that time he wrote thirteen novels, and after finding no traction in publishing, he quit and vowed never to write creatively again.

Michael discovered that never is a very long time and ended his writing hiatus a decade later but with a condition: he wouldn't seek publication (as doing so was just too painful). Instead, he decided to write books he wanted to read and developed a fantasy series to for his then thirteen-year-old daughter, who was struggling in school due to dyslexia. After reading the third book, his wife insisted the series needed to "get out there." After Michael refused to jump back on the query-go-round, she took over the publication tasks.

Michael is one of the few authors who has successfully published through all three routes: small press, self, and big five, and he helps aspiring authors help determine the path that is best for them through is posts on publishing for Amazing Stories. Some key accomplishments of his career include:

* Named to io9's Most Successful Self-Published Sci-Fi and Fantasy authors
* Selling more than half a million copies
* Being translated to fifteen foreign languages
* Spending more than a year on Amazon's Bestselling Fantasy Author's list
* Having his books named to more than 90 "best of" or "most anticipated" lists including those compiled by Library Journal, Barnes and Noble,, and

Today, Michael continues to fill blank pages and is working on completing the final book in his third series tentatively titled The First Empire (traditional fantasy). His first science fiction novel, Hollow World was released by Tachyon Publications in April 2014.

* Riyria Blog:
* Hollow World Blog:
* First Empire Series Blog:
* Twitter: @author_sullivan
* Riyria Facebook:
* Author Facebook:


* Theft of Swords: contains The Crown Conspiracy & Avempartha
* Rise of Empire: contains Nyphron Rising & The Emerald Storm
* Heir of Novron: contains Wintertide & Percepliquis

* The Crown Tower
* The Rose and the Thorn
* Blood of Thieves (Omnibus that contains The Crown Tower and The Rose and the Thorn)

THE FIRST EMPIRE (release date to be determined)
* Rhune
* Fhrey
* Dherg

* Hollow World (time-travel science fiction)
* Antithesis: release date to be determined (contemporary fantasy)
* Burden to the Earth: release date to b determined (literary fiction)

* The Crown Conspiracy
* Avempartha
* Nyphron Rising
* The Emerald Storm
* Wintertide
* Percepliquis

* The Viscount: A Riyria Short
* The Jester: A Riyria Short
* The Thieves: A Riyria Short (coming soon)
* Greener Grass (time-travel science fiction)
* Traditions: (traditional fantasy, coming soon)
* God's Game: (contemporary fantasy, coming soon)
* Burning Alexandria: (dystopian science fiction, coming soon)
* Autumn's Mist (contempoary fantasy, coming soon)

* Unfettered
* Triumph Over Tragedy
* The End - Visions of Apocalypse

Customer Reviews

I could not put the book down and could not wait to read the next book in the series.
It is an incredibly well written high fantasy novel with a detailed world, wonderful witty characters, and an intriguing plot.
K. Eckert
The pace is great, the plot is interesting and has plenty of twists, the characters are quite good.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

49 of 53 people found the following review helpful By Kimberly on November 10, 2011
Format: Paperback
I absolutely loved this book.

Hadrian and Royce battle for the greater good in the midst of intrigue, false promises, action, adventure, and love. They know what it means to walk a careful line between competing interests, and before the end of the book I knew that they were two of my most favorite fantasy characters ever.

The world of the Riyria Revelations is well imagined and the backdrop for the sudden plot twists is sweeping and inspiring. I couldn't put this book down, and didn't want it to end. A great story, start to finish.

When I could part with the book, I loaned it to my 75-year-old mother, who loved it. She decided that Hadrian was her favorite name. Shortly thereafter, I loaned it to my 13-year-old grandson, and he LOVED IT! He liked different characters and different parts of the story, but the very idea that we could read a book through the generations and all delight in the story was absolutely something to celebrate.

If you love fantasy, you will not be disappointed with this excellent offering by Michael Sullivan. Do yourself a favor. Read it.
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256 of 301 people found the following review helpful By A. Whitehead on November 20, 2011
Format: Paperback
Hadrian and Royce are partners in crime, a mercenary and thief who make a living working for the various nobles who rule over the lands of Avryn but spend most of their time feuding with one another. One particular job ends with Hadrian and Royce being arrested and charged with regicide. Determined to prove their innocence and take revenge on those who framed them, they set out on a quest that could change the fate of Avryn and the whole world.

Michael J. Sullivan's Riyria Revelations series is already a proven success, with both small press and self-published editions of the books selling well. Orbit have picked up the series and recast the original six books as three omnibuses, bringing them to a wider audience. Whilst this laudably rewards the author's success, it also raises the stakes: standing out from the crowd in self-publishing is one thing, but how does Sullivan's work stack up compared to the current fantasy heavyweights?

The answer is...okay, actually. Sullivan's ambition with this series was to create a series that in a way beat against the current trend for adult, edgy, violent and explicit fantasy novels in favour of something more straightforward or 'classic'. Something that evoked the spirit of say Eddings or Brooks without being as dire. Sullivan lists Harry Potter as an inspiration, particularly the way it welded together accessibility and a classic structure with darker elements (such as major character deaths), and that's certainly a reasonable ambition.

Theft of Swords (which combines the first two novels in the series, The Crown Conspiracy and Avempartha) is a fast-paced, straightforward read with a fast-moving plot and easy-to-read writing.
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23 of 26 people found the following review helpful By E. Ambrose on December 21, 2011
Format: Paperback
It should be noted that some of the first fantasy stories I ever read fell quite solidly into the sword and sorcery sub-genre. I remember liking them and then starting to move towards other things. Anyway, it's been a while since I found a sword and sorcery story I truly delighted in reading and Theft of Swords reminded me of everything I love about the sub-genre.

The book is about two partners in crime, Hadrian and Royce, as they get hired to pull a couple of heists involving swords (hence the title). Both start off simply enough but as such things are wont to do in fantasy novels, events go all Murphy's Law on them. It's really more like two novellas set one after the other with an ongoing plot linking them loosely together.

Usually the biggest pitfall I have with sword and sorcery is the main characters. This was not the case for this book. There was no brooding over Royce's and Hadrian's pasts (which was refreshing). Little tidbits and hints about their pasts were noted without dragging the pace of the story down or distracting me with some tale of woe. There were one line acknowledgements where I could look back at that character's actions up until that point and go "yup I suspected that, but thank you for confirming it" without interrupting the story one whit.

I loved the social dynamic between the two of them and how opposite Hadrian and Royce were by nature and by trait, but how little true antagonism there was between them. I found myself very happy with the ribbing of who's got a soft spot for what, the "if we listened to me, we wouldn't be in this mess" reiterations and of course the ever entertaining "Well we could just kill the twit" spiel.
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72 of 88 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on November 10, 2011
Format: Paperback
This is definitely at the top of my list of favorite books. I loved this story, and very much look forward to the next in the series. It seems as if lately everyone is trying to write darker, brooding books, and there is nothing wrong with that, but I was happy find something a little more like the stories that got me into reading when I was younger. A great story with characters you want to get to know and a well executed plot that keeps you engaged. It was definitely well thought out and well written. It is a rich world with great characters (good and bad) and stories without being too complex to follow. Great for all ages.
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