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The Black Prism (Lightbringer Book 1) [Kindle Edition]

Brent Weeks
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (585 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $16.00
Kindle Price: $6.99
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Sold by: Hachette Book Group
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Book Description

Gavin Guile is the Prism, the most powerful man in the world. He is high priest and emperor, a man whose power, wit, and charm are all that preserves a tenuous peace. But Prisms never last, and Guile knows exactly how long he has left to live: Five years to achieve five impossible goals.

But when Guile discovers he has a son, born in a far kingdom after the war that put him in power, he must decide how much he's willing to pay to protect a secret that could tear his world apart.

Books In This Series (3 Books)
Complete Series

  • Editorial Reviews

    From Publishers Weekly

    With this complicated fantasy about family politics, bestseller Weeks (The Way of Shadows) moves into familiar territory. An unloved, orphaned boy is the offspring of someone important; twins assume each other's identities; an aged ruler clings to power. Weeks manages to ring new tunes on these old bells, letting a deep background slowly reveal its secrets and presenting his characters in a realistically flawed and human way. Gavin Guile is facing his final five years as leader of a magical college whose members turn colors of light into various materials. Seeking to rectify the lingering wrongs from the war against his twin, Dazen, he is instead forced to acknowledge a bastard son, face down a corrupt governor, and stop a challenge to the state religion. Frequent perspective shifts keep the reader guessing as to who is heretic and who is hero. Author tour.
    Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


    "Brent Weeks is so good it's starting to tick me off."—Peter V. Brett, New York Times bestselling author of The Desert Spear

    "Weeks manages to ring new tunes on...old bells, letting a deep background slowly reveal its secrets and presenting his characters in a realistically flawed and human way."—Publishers Weekly on The Black Prism

    "The Blinding Knife is a wonderful work of high fantasy with engaging characters facing the perfect antagonists, set in a creatively-wrought and increasingly chaotic world brimful of imaginative magic and interesting politics. Weeks holds fast to the traditions of his genre while adding a compelling new flavor."—The Ranting Dragon

    "One of the best fantasies I've ever read."—Staffer's Book Review on The Blinding Knife

    Product Details

    • File Size: 2092 KB
    • Print Length: 678 pages
    • Publisher: Orbit; 1 edition (August 25, 2010)
    • Sold by: Hachette Book Group
    • Language: English
    • ASIN: B003JTHY76
    • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
    • X-Ray:
    • Word Wise: Enabled
    • Lending: Not Enabled
    • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #6,263 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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    Customer Reviews

    4.4 out of 5 stars
    4.4 out of 5 stars
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    Most Helpful Customer Reviews
    176 of 189 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Best fantasy novel of 2010 August 30, 2010
    Excellent book. While I had issues with the Night Angel series (assassins were essentially supermen in that world), the plot, plot twists, and some of the characterization was good enough to add him to my list of authors to read.

    The Black Prism, well, is even better. Fantastic world building, good magic system, and amazingly good plot. Best high fantasy novel I've read this year, hands down. Some parts of the plot figuratively floored me, and he definitely doesn't move the characters OR the plot in the direction that you anticipate after the first 150 pages. In this regard, it's similar to the Night Angel series: the reader builds up an expectation of how everything is going to pan out, and then he shakes it all around, and beats you over your head with your own expectation. It's frustrating not being able to talk about it here, but I hate people that blow spoilers for me.

    I think it accomplishes a light-based magic system better than the one used in Brandon Sanderson's Warbringer - though that novel had an appeal all of its own as well.

    Highly, highly recommended.
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    48 of 50 people found the following review helpful
    4.0 out of 5 stars Colorfully Original (Spoiler Free Review) September 5, 2011
    Format:Mass Market Paperback
    An Original Story in a Very Original Fantasy Universe where magic is based on the color spectrum. Brent Weeks, author of The Black Prism and The Night Angel Trilogy, is known for his creative world building, twisting storylines, and characters who act like people, rather than generic fantasy adventure archetypes.

    One thing is certain, this story is NOT FORMULAIC...

    A generation ago, The Great Prism War was fought. Two brothers, both powerful mages, built armies and battled each other to become The Prism. The war ended when Gavin defeated his brother Dazen. Now, a count with grandiose, aspirations declares himself a king and builds an army. His first act is to destroy the small town of Rekton, who failed to supply men for his rebellion. Kip, a chubby farmboy, and Liv, a student at the magic academy, are drawn into the conflict. Just when you start to figure out what is going on, the story twists and turns...

    This is an original Medieval Fantasy Universe, that takes place in The Seven Satrapies. Each Satrapy functions as an independent country, but is under the watch of a central government. This government has three branches: The Prism, The White, and The Colors. The Prism, a religious figure and powerful mage viewed as an avatar for the god Orholam. The White and The Colors are like Senates, and they maneuver with each other for political power.

    Magic is based on Chromaturgy, the act of creating physical objects in the world based on light. (Similar to the Green Lantern) This substance is called Luxin. The magic users who create Luxin are called Drafters. Most Drafters can only use one color. A small percentage of Drafters are Bi-chromes and can use two colors.
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    46 of 56 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Not in the Shadows August 26, 2010
    For the unawares, this is the start of a new series from author Brent Weeks, who wrote the highly acclaimed Night Angel trilogy. (The trilogy has my own personal acclaim as well. Hmm, that doesn't sound right.) I know some of us (ahem, me) were excited at the possible prospect of a new series that followed old and new characters a couple of decades later in the timeline. And when I first heard about the release of a new book, I immediately assumed this was the case. I admit to a big wave of disappointment when I heard it was in an all-new world with all-new characters. I even sulked a bit. (Okay, a lot.)

    But guess what isn't a disappointment? Go ahead. Guess.

    Well, that's true, but I was actually referring to The Black Prism.

    The Black Prism follows the Prism Gavin Guile (the Prism is the religious leader-like the Pope) as he attempts to complete five great purposes before his death in five years. The world is composed of the Seven Satrapies, and the Chromeria where drafters-magic-users-are trained in service of the Satrapies, the Prism being the most powerful drafter of all. Sixteen years ago, the Prism fought and defeated his brother in a civil war to attain his title, and now the satrapy Tyrea, who sided with the losing brother, is attempting to declare independence. In Tyrea, Kip's hometown is destroyed by the cruel new king, and the ungainly, hapless young man becomes a part of the powerful events that are about to shatter the Seven Satrapies.

    It would be too easy, too uncomplicated to say that this book is awesome, and it wouldn't do justice to Weeks' craft. But I'll say it anyway. This book...IS AWESOME!! There have been too many times where I have opened a new series in a new world by an author well-known for one particular fantasy world.
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    40 of 49 people found the following review helpful
    3.0 out of 5 stars Was expecting more November 13, 2010
    I guess I am a victim of my own expectations for this novel. I loved the first two books of Night Angel, but felt the trilogy lost strength in its finale. Weeks was brilliant when writing a small number of characters in gritty, brutal situations. However, as the story progressed to the typical epic fantasy level of kings and kingdoms and more complex magic/world building, Weeks writing lost steam. And unfortunately this is where Black Prism continues.

    Strengths: Gavin Guile is a very interesting character. In one chapter you will like and admire the man and in the next those feelings turn to loathing. His protrayal is highly dichotamous but believable. It will be interesting to see who he really is as the series unfolds. Kip on the other hand is less likeable. He is the fantasy cliche of small village boy who is really more than he seems. However, he is not the fantasy cliche in that he is fat, awkward, not all that smart, and lacks much of any quality to make you root for him. I cant decide if this is refreshing or if I really didnt enjoy his chapters.

    Weaknesses: the magic system. People called prisms have abilities to take various colors of light and turn it into luxin, a plastic like substance. Different colors of luxin have different properties. Its not that the idea isnt creative, it just felt that the execution was lacking. For some reason, I wasnt able to suspend belief and buy into the magic. Instead it was awkward and distracting. Pages are spent delving into the "magic" of luxin rather than delving into characters and plot. I prefer the magic system to be subservient to the character development and plot of a novel, not the other way around.

    I admit I may have enjoyed this book more if I didnt go into it with such high expectations.
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    Most Recent Customer Reviews
    5.0 out of 5 stars A must read
    Great book!
    Published 1 day ago by Arnold I Miller
    5.0 out of 5 stars Well worth the money
    A very enjoyable read with new ideas and twists from other ideas that have been around for a while. This is one of the best books I have read this year.
    Published 3 days ago by N. Weller
    5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
    Great story. The humor was fantastic. The magic system unique and interesting.
    Published 5 days ago by Telimaktar
    4.0 out of 5 stars Great books and worth the read
    NOT A TRILOGY!!! It says book one of three but that is not true! Great books and worth the read. But, I am disappointed that now I have to wait for the rest of the series.
    Published 6 days ago by Parmalee Hartzog
    5.0 out of 5 stars Never disappointed.
    I have been followimg Brent Weeks work for a long while and this book is one of my favorites. The diversity of the characters along side the action packed story telling makes this... Read more
    Published 6 days ago by kyle howard
    5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
    Brent Weeks is among a pantheon of fantasy authors that must be read!
    Published 7 days ago by Leon Aldrich
    1.0 out of 5 stars Refrain from buying
    Wow. Unable to adequately describe how utterly disappointing this book is. Can't even read beyond chapter 5, not for lack of trying. Read more
    Published 8 days ago by P.Q
    4.0 out of 5 stars Good Premise
    Slow going. For me I had to read halfway before it started to pick up. But to be honest I liked the premise and the religious aspect. Looking forward to reading Part 2. Read more
    Published 9 days ago by liz26ken
    4.0 out of 5 stars A Fun Romp..
    Gavin Guile is the Prism, almost a demigod and also the head of seven Satrapies who also has a bastard son and a love interest. Read more
    Published 9 days ago by Vijaya Vardhan Reddy Chavva
    5.0 out of 5 stars Finally Reading this Book.
    Seen this book crop up for years on my recommendation. I finally bought it. Loved Kip, loved the seeming dizzying array of twists. Read more
    Published 17 days ago by tarek bassil
    Search Customer Reviews

    More About the Author

    Brent Weeks was born and raised in Montana. After getting his paper keys from Hillsdale College, Brent had brief stints walking the earth like Caine from Kung Fu, tending bar, and corrupting the youth. (Not at the same time.) He started writing on bar napkins, then on lesson plans, then full time. Eventually, someone paid him for it. Brent lives in Oregon with his wife, Kristi. He doesn't own cats or wear a ponytail.

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    Topic From this Discussion
    Why is the Kindle edition more expensive than the paperback one?!
    Suckers and fans pay for it. When people don't, they'll drop the price or lose business. Foolish really. Make them a buck or two a book and they'll sell billions of these tiny text files. Just look at the portable gaming model exploding on the apple iphone/pod/pad and android devices. Make the... Read More
    Jul 20, 2011 by Bone |  See all 3 posts
    Books that should be made into movies
    I trualy enjoyed brent weeks books ,but I do not think it should be made into a movie. In all the books are 1800 pages and that just cant be put into a 2 hour movie. so i beleive it woud be like the eragon movie and just ruin it.
    Jun 17, 2010 by Amazon Customer |  See all 3 posts
    I'm not paying the same amount for the Kindle edition as the real book...
    As much as I want to read this book, I'm NOT going to reward this publisher for their high Kindle price. There is TONS of great stuff out there for me to read.
    Jul 10, 2010 by P. Bennett |  See all 12 posts
    Still no Kindle version in Canada Be the first to reply
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