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A Tide of Shadows (The Chronicles of Llars Book 1) [Kindle Edition]

Tom Bielawski
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (73 customer reviews)

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Book Description

"Tom Bielawski is a bright light in today's dark sea of new writers. His writing gives me hope for the next generation of dreamers. I highly recommend both him and his works." - NYT Bestselling author, Tracy Hickman.

A dark and powerful magic, lost the world for centuries, stirs once more. The Dark Disciples, infamous villains once thought vanquished, have returned.

Carym of Hyrum, accused murderer, is freed from captivity by a band of criminals. To repay the debt he must undertake a quest to find the mythical Everpool and bring back a vial of its enchanted water.

Minions of a dark god hunt Carym, for he is the key to unlocking a power greater than their own. If they cannot turn him, they will destroy him.


Product Details

  • File Size: 1319 KB
  • Print Length: 239 pages
  • Publisher: Wasp-Dragon Publishing; 4.1 edition (November 23, 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B006D8FZYO
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,504 Free in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Free in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Much better than I expected February 11, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I can't understand the negative reviews for this book. Sure, it's not perfect; but no book is.

Pros: Good plot given that it's basically about a quest. The characters are individuals, not races. You are served up some delightful action and adventure. By the middle of the book the characters have started to develop and the really fantastic aspects of the world are starting to be explored.

Cons: The plot is indeed slow at beginning, and it is a long book. It's not a page-turner at the start, but if you stick it out you will be rewarded. It needs further editing is some places. The mix of modern terminology is a little distracting, but it is not so prevalent, nor egregious, as another review suggested.

If you enjoy an epic quest, then I recommend that you give this book a chance.
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30 of 35 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
There are a billion fantasy novels out there, and it seems like with kindle online publishing, that there are 10 new ones every day.

Certainly, at 99 cents, and just a few reviews - there is little to indicate this novel in particular is worth getting.

Let me convince you:
- It's really really long (fantasy requires immersion, fantasy usually focuses around world building and character building, the longer books tend to do better and this book is about 2-3 times your normal book length).
- It stays interesting throughout....the characters are always moving and there are new challenges and puzzles while staying within an overall theme, and the plot does make measurable progress rather than just wandering around just for fun.
- The people in the story seem fully real, and the main character has the key attributes of being likable but flawed, but willing to grow.
- The story while fantastical has real directness, there are no magical saves....everything must be worked for, when things go well - there is a price to be paid, good isn't all good and bad isn't all bad, the main guy isn't so stupid that he doesn't ask himself a hundred times whether he should just give up his magical quest every day
- Writing, it isn't perfectly elegant yet it reaches relatively high in a few places and some of the scenes are awesome. It's amazingly smooth given the length of the book.
- At the end, I just couldn't believe the author couldn't have continued the story for another several hundred pages....buying the next book when it comes out is an easy call.

Negatives:
- Given how much time/effort that must have gone into making this book, who knows when the next one will be available.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Epic Fantasy Tale April 23, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
A Tide of Shadows reminded me a lot of my old D&D games. There are: demons, wizards, nymphs, sirens, monsters, magic spells, and other dimensions.

This is a well-written book, and for the sheer size of the novel it's a heck of a bargain at only $2.99

Okay, now a little bit about the story. I'll try not to spoil it for you:

The tale begins with the dark wizard Shalthazar who is a very old elf traveling the planes (other dimensions). He seeks to steal the power of the 'gods' and must bargain with temperamental Cjii. One of the Dark Gods contacts him and makes a deal with him: his soul in exchange for ultimate power. Shalthazar immediately takes the deal but knows he'll be able to find a way out of it. He wishes to use the Dark God Umber's power to vanquish a rival deity and steal his power for his own. (The Deities aren't real Gods, they're just powerful.).

Next we are introduced to the hero of the story: Carym of Hybrand. He's an honorable guy who had some really bad things happen in his life. You can really feel for him. He lives in a kingdom conquered by the evil Arnathians. When he witnesses some of their vile deeds, he must speak out and his friend Zach helps him fight the evil soldiers. They are now outcasts on the run. Carym enters the woods and is contacted by a magical wood-sprite. She tells him he is the "Chosen One" and must seek out the magical Everpool.

On the way Carym will face the forces of evil, encounter mystical and mysterious treasures, learn of the mighty Sigil Magic he will one day command, and meet tempting women. The end of the book is well-written and leaves a lot of questions unanswered, but I won't spoil it for you here.
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Could of been great February 17, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
So this is the story of Carym who was a soldier and in this story has to come to grips with being blessed by the head god with power. His adventures start with his village being destroyed and himself and his friend sent on a mission to a mystic location lost to mankind. His adventures meander around seeming to lurch like a drunken sailor the books ends without him finding it yet.

Bad
- Leaden characters and the main character has no personality he swings between wiling to do anything to complete his mission to something else. The characters are just ill defined with the dialogue hurting and not helping. On one page you will get him wanting to keep an eye on someone and the next he will be shocked at their actions.
- The story lacks cohesion at times you miss the point of what anyone is doing. Or even what their goals are.
- Lots of side adventures that serve no real purpose to the overall story.
- The dialogue are long info dumps about other parts of the world and seem more like they are trying to describe something than a real conversation.
- The magic system is the best part of the story but even with the Carym having access to all these spells he just jumps right into combat each time. And even gets frustrated with himself about it. Well how do you think we feel having to read it? If he has all these options have him do something with it instead I kept reading about the other characters doing cool things and thinking what is the big deal with the Sigils anyway?

Good
- The world does seem interesting and I could see that the author had spent time on fleshing it out.
- The overall plot had promise but the product lacks cohesion and focus.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars I did enjoy the book and will continue to read more in ...
Some interesting variations on the traditional fantasy story lines, but a bit more editing might have served to tighten the story up and give it more clarity. Read more
Published 13 days ago by Linda Barnett
4.0 out of 5 stars Great new author for me.
Good so far. Imaginative. Looking forward to the next book which I'm purchasing now.
Published 17 days ago by James Johnston
4.0 out of 5 stars ... free so at that price it it a very good read. I will buy book 2
I got this book for free so at that price it it a very good read. I will buy book 2, enjoy!!!
Published 1 month ago by daniel ochoa
1.0 out of 5 stars Confused?
It started out ok and then I would get lost, then I would start to follow it again and then totally lost again. I personally had terrible following the story.
Published 2 months ago by nancy
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great read
Published 2 months ago by jeremy carpenter
1.0 out of 5 stars Boring
boring
Published 2 months ago by A. Gretler
5.0 out of 5 stars Surprisingly enjoyable!
An excellent read, this author blends types of characters normally typecast by the myriad fantasy writers of the last couple decades with a descriptive talent which illuminates... Read more
Published 3 months ago by Amazon Customer
2.0 out of 5 stars Two Stars
BORING
Published 3 months ago by Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars Really Good Read
This book is a wonderful fantasy book and I loved it. It has awesome characters and they mesh so well together. This book is filled with magic and mystery. Read more
Published 4 months ago by bitOhoney535
4.0 out of 5 stars Awesome Tale!
This is a knockout! I'm Thunderstruck ...
Undoubtedly this amazing tale is awe-inspiring. Its mind gripping and thought provoking non-stop. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Nita
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More About the Author

Veteran Marine, lawman, and graduate of NYT Bestselling author Tracy Hickman's online workshop called the "Scribe's Forge."

"Tom Bielawski is a bright light in today's dark sea of new writers. His writing gives me hope for the next generation of dreamers. I highly recommend both him and his works." - NYT Bestselling author, Tracy Hickman.

"Tom is a great literary voice in a sea of indies." -Best selling independent author, MR Mathias

Some of my favorite fantasy series' include: The Dragonlance Saga, Forgotten Realms, The Wheel of Time, and The Lord of the Rings. My favorite authors of fantasy and science fiction inlclude: Tracy Hickman, Robert Jordan, CS Lewis, JRR Tolkien, Orson Scott Card, Brian Rathbone, MR Mathias, Scott Baughman, and Morgen Rich.

I also enjoy thrillers and spy fiction. My favorite authors in this genre include: Brad Thor, Ian Flemming, Robert Ludlum, Eric Van Lustbader, and John Locke.

My hobbies include spending time with my family, trout fly fishing, bass fishing, riding horses, and spending time outdoors.

Contact me:
on Facebook: www.facebook.com/thechroniclesofllars
on Twitter: @TomBielawski
www.SpecFiction.Net
www.TheDragonWritersCollective.com

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