- File Size: 3615 KB
- Print Length: 269 pages
- Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
- Publisher: Ostiagard Press (January 2, 2014)
- Publication Date: January 2, 2014
- Sold by: Amazon.com Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B0057OAXQ0
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #6,413 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Defender (The Sanctuary Series Book 1) Kindle Edition
|Length: 269 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
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|Age Level: 13 - 18|
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During the course of that growth the world, the characters, and my love for the series has also grown. It starts out like a typical early 00's MMORPG and grows in depth and subtly with each passing book. I urge you give this series a chance and I hope by book 3 you'll have grown to love it as much I as do.
Book 1: Boring, predictable, mediocre fantasy novel. The first half is particularly bad. 2 of 5 stars
Book 2: Slightly better. The world begins to expand a little in this novel and the characters become a little more 3 dimensional. 3 of 5 stars
Book 3: The world opens up, the main characters begin to have a real voice, and you feel the actual stakes at play within this universe. Most importantly the author finds how to incorporate his trademark snark and sarcasm into these relationships. 4 of 5 stars
Book 4: The series asks questions that involve real more complexity including dealing with death, responsibility for our actions, and the importance of trust in relationships. 4 of 5
Book 4.5 Provides more color and complexity for one of the best characters in the series. 5 of 5
Book 5: I'm hooked. Can't wait to see the path that this story finally takes us down. 5 of 5
Book 5.5 More backstory, more complexity, just wonderful. This is basically Ender's Shadow to book 5's Enders Game. 5 of 5.
I have to be honest -- this first book is bad. It's almost terrible. Let me explain. The first 1/3 of the book is taken up by unwieldy world-building where the author explains, mostly via bad dialog, all the classes that exist in the world (warriors, healers, wizards, illusionists/enchanters, druids, rogues, and rangers), and what races (human, elf, dark elf, dwarf, gnome, troll, goblin, and dragon), and even what spells are available to them, and what gods they worship. It's all very tedious.
Thankfully, the last 2/3rds of the book, along with the rest of the series, is much, much, much better, and by the third book, it's hard to put it down.
The books are much longer than Girl in the Box. About 3x longer. I read the entire Girl in the Box series in the same time that I managed to read the first two books of this series. Most of the time that's good. Sometimes it does seem like it plods along a bit slowly. Always the books end with enough intrigue to make you want to read more.
Good call on my part. Yes, this is a somewhat typical fantasy novel with humans, elves, trolls, titans, gnomes, dwarves, druids, wizards, dark elves, and other less recognizable beings. Lots of magic thrown around, with no real science behind it. So -- typical fantasy novel. But, this is a Crane novel. So, the characters quickly become yours. They become complex and you are driven to find out what happens next.
The suspense level is very high in these books (yes- I went on to read them all). The story becomes dense and impossible to predict. Some of the things that happen I foresaw, but, more often than not, I didn't see through characters all that well. It's very well written in that regard.
Crane has also written an extra book with spoilers on major characters which shouldn't be read until after Book Four, and he also has begun work on a new series featuring Terian, one of the more complicated and interesting of all the players. I'm wholly invested in this series now, and am glad that I gave it a chance. Usually the mere mention of "Trolls" results in my tossing a book aside. Don't do it with this series. It's a very good one.
5 Stars, and you should read all of the books. They're worth it.
Along comes Cranes' "Defender". I love his writing style. The book has a prologue (something frowned upon these days), and it is very interesting. I was hooked on the novel well before the end of chapter one. By chapter three I decided I plan to read everything Crane has written. He's that good.
The only negative is I got Defender for free. While it helped hook me on the author (which would not have happened otherwise), now I feel guilty for not paying for such great writing. Knowing how hard it is for authors to make a living these days, I hate that one has to put up more than one book for free to draw attention.
This book is well worth a full cover price. Period. In the future, I plan to buy any of Cranes' books I can.
Top international reviews
The land of Arkaria holds cities of dwarves, elves, humans, trolls, dragons, gnomes, dark elves,gods and their treasures. Within these cities are guilds- groups of adventurers who target the cities treasures and steal these for the good of the guild ( to build the guild up to a more powerful association for its members).Each guild also seems to have an underlying reason for existence.
Book one introduces us to Cyrus Davidon a warrior, who after failing to get his own guild (Kings of Reikonos) to any standing joins a larger more powerful guild Sanctuary. The leader of Sanctuary believes in honour and therefore has other reasons for the guild other than adventuring ( he thinks this is a means to an end).
The story develops through his first few years in Sanctuary and is full of action, betrayal, and longing...
A very good read.
The Girl in the Box kept me hooked and I am now waiting for the last two books in the series to come out.
As I had found those books to be most enjoyable, I thought that I would give Robert Crane's other series a go.
A previous reviewer mentioned that this book feels like a Dungeons and Dragons manual and I agree there is something to be said for the accuracy of that comment. I found this book quite tedious and difficult to get into. There was a very palpable feeling of let down and I found myself wishing that I could return to Sienna and the Girl in the Box.
And yet...there was just something enough to keep me going and then to purchase the next book and then again the next one after that.
Each book is better than the last and I can now say that I am enjoying the Sanctuary series.
In summary, you may find this book a bit of a struggle to read, but rest assured that if you persevere the next books do turn out much better to read. Unfortunately, they do need this book to set the story up, but in fact the pay off is quite acceptable.
It flowed easily with likeable characters and an interesting plotline. It didn't break any of the cardinal rules for myself (i.e. it didn't include overly graphic violence or sex scenes nor was it filled with swearing).
Seamless and enjoyable.
In fact this is a well written and gripping book. The story is told from the point of view of a warrior in a D&D style world. There is nothing wrong with starting from a world with that cast of characters. It is a world that most fantasy readers will know well as most fantasy books seem to include a subset of the same races/abilities/classes. It made a change for an author to be refreshingly honest about his influences and it made me smile when the character was first brought back to life.
The story is well worked. There are a number of sub plots, some of which reach fruition within this book and others that are left hanging. Unlike most of the starts to series that I have read for free on my kindle I will purchase the next book (which will be only my second purchase since getting the kindle at christmas - 30+ books reviewed so far).
There is enough to this story and this world that I want to go back into it.
I need to preface my comments by saying I'm now reading book 4 in the series and have really enjoyed this world and the characters that the author has created.
This first book starts quite poorly and, initially feels like a regurgitation of a Dungeons and :Dragons game. It introduces and explains in fairly short order the classes, their skills and characteristics of that game along with the whole theory of adventuring. For anyone familiar with this (and that maybe by a generational thing)" this jars quite badly. This exposition affects everything in that parts of it come from dialogue from characters which prevented me from engaging with them.
One that's out of the way, things start to pick up rapidly and it develops into a cracking read: entertaining, engaging and well paced. The other books get better and better.
So, stick with the initial exposition and you're in for a great read.
I was quite surprised at first to find a world and system of classes and magic that wouldn't feel out of place in an MMO or an RPG, but after reading the free sample and seeing the book was free on kindle I decided to give it a go. I wasn't dissapointed, the world and rules within it begin to add the charm. It possibly helps that I'm a gamer though, so that I wasn't so phased as others may be. If I had one complaint, it would be that death or injury seem to carry little weight in this world, with healers taking away any serious danger. There are ways around it which are explained well enough but rarely come into effect.
The characters are well written, certainly the main 3 or 4 accompanied by a good supporting cast. This is important as the story becomes one of character interaction and camaraderie, with an overarching plot that seems to exist purely to get the team out on their raids. It reminds me very much of the early days of World of Warcraft, playing within a guild, raiding the dungeons and the good natured banter between the guildmates. This is mainly prevalent in this book though, with the following books getting darker.
The story is rather fast paced, possibly due to the teleportation mechanic that means the characters can jump between points of action rather quickly. This possibly impacts the level of character depth and development which has been stated by other reviewers but I personally found that the characters shone through during the action. I would perhaps have liked more background on some of the characters, or minor characters that I liked and wished could be brought to the fore but I still found myself caring about the cast. Perhaps most importantly, I found myself wanting to know what happens next.
From what I understand, this was the first book released by this author, and it's a fantastic effort that paves the way for an enjoyable series. I believe the current average waiting of 4.3 stars is about right in terms of enjoyment and given the fact it's currently free on Kindle, anyone who's looking for a more light hearted fantasy has little reason not to give it a go.
Reading the first Sanctuary book with its descriptions of big raids was like reliving my EverQuest days. My guild, Hands of Doom, was like the Sanctuary of our server :-) We were the plucky fourth guild on the server - the first smaller guild after the Big Three to move into the Planes of Power. I briefly wondered if the author had been a member of our guild - but we were a European guild and I don't think we had any Americans!
But I digress.... The story interested me initially because of my EQ days. However, there was plenty to keep me reading beyond that and more than enough to persuade me to purchase book two, and book three not long after that. I think this volume is one of the author's earlier efforts as it was a lot less polished than The Girl in the Box series, which I'd read first in its entirety. However, there are plenty of interesting characters and some promising plot lines. Book Two kept the story developing very nicely and I've just finish book three which was excellent! And now you'll have to excuse me as I'm off to buy book four....
buy and read them, it is unlikely you will regret it.
Where this book is good, and maybe does not deserve the 5 stars, the series is absolutely amazing! Characters who at first were good keep getting better, more characters get brought in and their back stories are published as short stories which really brings them alive. Plots which at first seemed to be slightly lacking become well thought out and gripping.
I could not put the books down and cannot wait for the next book to come out.