The Stormcaller: Book One of the Twilight Reign Paperback – October 21, 2008
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Frequently bought together
From Publishers Weekly
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
About the Author
- Publisher : Pyr; First Edition (October 21, 2008)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 449 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1591026938
- ISBN-13 : 978-1591026938
- Item Weight : 1.31 pounds
- Dimensions : 6.02 x 0.95 x 9 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #2,499,811 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
What a wonderful surprise, what a story. From a nobody to become an heir to a ruler, the story is just captivating, the pace is fast moving. It really deserves a 4 1/2 star.
However, the spelling and use of the wrong word was on every other page. I just found it hard to believe that this book could get published without having someone proof read it first.
So why the struggle up to three stars? This book failed for me on purely technical merits. It had all of the ingredients of the kind of book I normally devour - magic, prophesy, gods, big shiny swords with special names, world in peril, etc. Where did it lose me?
First, the list of characters, in addition to being too long to keep track of in such a short book, was tucked away at the back of the book. Literally. Readers of the paper edition might have seen it, by accident, when going to set the book down. Readers of the electronic edition, though, would suffer the entire length of the book before discovering that hidden away at the back there is a mild attempt at explaining who's who. Mild, because it isn't conclusive, and doesn't give us the information we need to fully appreciate the story that Lloyd is telling.
Tackling a new world, with politics and struggles between sides, with an obvious sense of depth and history, is nothing new to fantasy readers. Its part of what makes second world fantasy stand out, after all. As readers, we've come to expect that the author will use one of a few well trod mechanisms. The simplest, and least favored, is of course to just info dump, preferably somewhere near the start of the tale so we can get that nasty mess out of the way and move on. The more timid author will provide us with a glossary, or at least well populated and advertised appendixes, that explain the lay of the land, who the sides are, even a little cultural background. Some prefer this method as it leaves it up to the reader to determine what depth they're willing to explore and understand the underpinnings of the world they just engaged. Of course, the truly brave writer - and this is why epic fantasy is known for its lengthy tomes, I think - will layer their explanations and insights about their fantasy world through the telling of the novel, so that while you may start not knowing who Bahl is or what a white-eyes is, by the end of the story you'll catch yourself swearing in Bahl's name and cursing the blight that is a white-eye born man. These are the story tellers. And this is what is so infuriating about this book, because it is this final cusp that it fails to cross. Our understanding of the world is so incomplete we are left questioning what is happening for part of the book. Every time I felt I had a grasp, we were introduced to a new character that made me question whether we were speaking the same language.
In the end, I think this first book had potential, but never quite rises above these flaws to stand out. Recommended for genre readers looking for a new series, but be forewarned its rough around the edges.
(Review originally compiled for FantasyBookAddict.com)
Lloyd writes unlike so many other sci-fi or fantasy writers. Instead of massive info dumps filling us in on the background of the world they've created, Lloyd just hitches us to the characters like a reality cam and takes the reader along for the ride. We start to see the world, its mythology, lore, politics, and personalities first hand, in a patchwork fashion. Only occasionally does a character fill in blanks, and when it happens, it is never full or thorough, but smacks of the reality that this is how people talk, giving some information, never in encyclopedic manner, but just enough to make conversation work.
Piled into this is a colorful network of loosely connected characters, countries, creatures, and gods. Instead of the stereotypical swords and sorcery, Lloyd turns types on their head, makes his own types, and recreates old ones. All through-out, however, is the classic hero motif and the accompanying companions and wise old mentor.
It's a fun ride, and while I don't know that it will find itself in the upper echelons of fantasy fiction, it isn't due to any failure on the part of the writer. I think Lloyd is definitely showing himself to be a creative and talented pen with a future in front of him.
The book definitely has some strong points. The white eyes are conceptually interesting, and several of the white eye characters are well developed. The world shows some originality, although I don't think the author does a great job of getting the "feel" of the world across. The storyline is also fairly strong with a few twists.
On the down side, some of the "normal" characters come across as a bit two-dimensional. The writing is ok, but never really drew me into the story. It also feels almost like parts were edited out without adjusting the rest of the text to account for it, resulting in a bit of a "choppy" feel in places.
Overall the book was ok - good enough for me to finish it, but with the number of strong fantasies available these days I'm not sure it was good enough for me to pick up the sequels.