Summary

The White Tree (Book 1): In Mallon, the dark magic of the nether has been banned for centuries. Its users have been driven out or killed. Its secrets lost.
But the holy book of the nethermancers has just been found by a boy named Dante.
As he works to unlock the book's power, he's attacked in the street. The nethermancers aren't gone—and they want their book back. Caught between death cultists and the law, Dante fights for his life, aided by his growing skills and a brash bodyguard named Blays. Together, they're drawn into a centuries-old conflict that brings Mallon to the brink of civil war.
Surviving won't be easy. But if they make it out alive, they'll step down the path to becoming two of the greatest warriors the world has ever known.
The Great Rift (Book 2): Dante and Blays have averted war against their new home of Narashtovik. But they didn't do so alone. It's time to repay their debts.
The norren who helped them remain enslaved by the Gaskan Empire. While arming the norren clans for rebellion, Dante hears one of them is in possession of the legendary Quivering Bow. If he can track down the weapon, it could secure norren independence.
But the wheels of war have already begun to turn. As Gask moves to crush the rebellion, Dante and Blays find themselves at the head of a campaign for survival—for norren and Narashtovik alike.
The Black Star (Book 3): Narashtovik has been saved—but Dante and Blays' friendship has been destroyed.
Blaming the Gaskan king for the loss of his love, Lira, Blays infiltrates the enemy nobility. There, he schemes to bankrupt Gask and drive its ruler from the throne. But Dante's been waiting for Blays' return. If he finds and exposes him, Blays will be executed as a spy.
As they squabble, strange lights shine in the east. Harbingers of a long-forgotten threat. If the signs go ignored, Narashtovik will be annihilated by an enemy it never knew it had.
©2012 Edward W. Robertson (P)2015 Podium Publishing
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
2 out of 5 stars
By Robyn on 21-02-16

Good potential, poorly executed.

I did plough through the whole trilogy (probably only because it all came at the cost of a single credit for 66 hours of story), but have to admit to being rather disappointed. There was so much potential with the world created, but the plot seemed to lurch from event to event, with huge gaping holes glibly glossed over. Similarly, the characters were under-developed, and all seemed to have the same flippant attitude to events of consequence.............all rather disappointing.

I also found some of the story telling quite jarring at times. For example, this is an "old-world"; with sword fighting and horses as the means of travel.....Yet a throw-away quip by one of the lead characters references "zombies"??!!! I had to rewind just to check I hadn't misheard. Felt horribly out of place.

By the third book in the trilogy, I think the author had settled down a little, and the characters were a little more defined (Blays becomes a little more interesting) but the plot was still so frustratingly shallow and with so many gaping holes its a wonder an editor ever let it get to production.

The narration was ok, although very few characters had real differentiation which could be challenging at times.

If you want mindless entertainment and you are aren't too picky about plots and character development, then this is probably sufficiently entertaining to distract...............however, if you choose to pass this one by, you won't be missing anything.

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23 of 27 people found this review helpful

2 out of 5 stars
By Bob on 23-12-15

Gave up half way.

Any additional comments?

I've got no idea how this novel has attained such a high average score. I listened to over 20 hours before I decided I couldn't take anymore and gave up. The only reason I haven't given it one star is because I have not completed it therefore I cannot completely condemn it as something wonderful may happen after the first 30 hours of listening. The two leading characters are criminally underdeveloped. Why does Dante so desperately want to have magical powers - because he saw somebody else do it once, is that it? Why does his eventual side kick Blase seem willing to follow him unquestionably? Again the answer appears wafer thin. The nonchalant attitude the teenage protagonist show to murder and death really shows the lack of true characterisation. I have read some reviewers talk of how they love the way the two characters talk to each other in crudities and they site this as some sort of evidence of good characterisation however when I listen to it all I hear is pithy nonsense, two teenage best friends who never have a real or meaningful conversation, I've never know such a thing, what is the point of a best friend when your at the most vulnerable time of your life if not to share some of that teenage angst? Plot, in the first 20 hours I have not found one, the main characters bumping into people and believing whatever they are told, going wherever they are directed to go, doing whatever they are told to do, does not constitute a plot in my book. We've got protagonist that don't think, how are you supposed to drive a narrative if you don't think for yourself - the answer is they do not. I am a great fan of the fantasy genre, I love gritty realism and I enjoy getting value for money with a long listen but this is really poor.

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21 of 25 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By jazmaan on 05-09-15

Entertaining and Fun

Would you listen to The Cycle of Arawn again? Why?

I might go back and listen to the first book again, this trilogy is so long I've forgotten some of the first book already!

What did you like best about this story?

I liked the fact that it never dragged over 65 hours!

Have you listened to any of Tim Gerard Reynolds’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

Reynolds may have even improved since he narrated the Riyria Chronicles!

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Ha ha. 65 hours is too long for any one sitting!

Any additional comments?

I don't agree with people complaining about so many of the characters being smart-alecks. I enjoyed every bit of the wise-cracking repartee and just accepted it as a cultural thing common to this fantasy world. This "Cycle" reminded me a lot of the Riyria Chronicles. I'd say it doesn't quite measure up to Riyria, but it was still quite enjoyable and I hope there's even more to come in this series.

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96 of 107 people found this review helpful

4 out of 5 stars
By Alex on 26-06-15

65 hours of awsome for 1 credit

Would you consider the audio edition of The Cycle of Arawn to be better than the print version?

yes, Tim Gerard Reynolds voice will forever be Dante and Blaze

Have you listened to any of Tim Gerard Reynolds’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

he did as good on this as he did on The Riyria Chronicles, one of the best fantasy stories I've ever listened too on audible.

If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

dark fantasy with a side of snarky humor

Any additional comments?

if you've read The Riyria Chronicles, and loved it, you'll like this slightly darker world with two similar pals. Dante and Blaze are a lot of fun to listen too as they go back and fourth with each other and the others around them. your crazy not to spend one credit on 65 hours of fun entertainment.

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133 of 152 people found this review helpful

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