I had feared that with the release of the Origin series (Legends of the First Empire), Mr. Sullivan would no longer reach back/forward to share more of the adventures of the most colorful, humorous and intriguing duo since Holmes & Watson. I can appreciate how Hadrian and Royce have bounced around in MJS’s head for so long, and am thankful for it. Please keep the Chronicles coming, for Maribor’s sake.
Each time I am treated to a new story, I find I must go back and re-listen to the series; sometimes in order of release, others in chronological order. I will do the same this time, adding the Legends into the queue. The epics are so well thought out and true, likely owing to the fact that all 6 Revelations were written before the first was published, that each re-listening only brings more and more detail forward. There are no loose ends; there are no “chance” encounters. Each story reveals something from the one before. The opening scene of Royce & Hadrian in Disappearance of Winter’s Daughter reminded me of how I felt at the beginning of Star Wars: The Phantom Menace. After so many years to be instantly transported back to Tatooine.
That same sense of nostalgia, happy to be with these beloved characters again. Here in Winter’s Daughter, we see Royce struggle with his own cynical world view, his worth and lovability, and reconciling it as a necessary yang which allows Hadrian’s Pollyanna yin to exist. It’s such a lovely part of the story, surrounded by action, danger, missteps and unforgettable Riyria banter. (Seriously, only Royce Melborne could talk about eating unicorns with a straight face). And it goes without saying that Tim Gerard Reynolds is to Riyria what Luke Daniels is to the Iron Druid, or Jim Dale to Harry Potter; he has brought a distinct voice to these characters which is now inseparable from Riyria itself. There can be no other.
If you are just joining Riyria, I believe the best experience is to read in the order by which they were released, that is, first with the Revelations, then the Chronicles. I believe knowing the fate of the story only lends more depth to its beginnings. And be prepared to find a new favorite series.
If you are an old fan of Colnora, Riyria and the world of Avron, dive right in. The story is a delight, the setting is filled with new interesting characters, and the boys? As always, bickering, debating, finding new ways to horrify the other, and still coming to grips with the reality that, for better or worse, they are in it together to the end.
13 of 13 people found this review helpful
The author dedicated this book to the Ryira, Royce and Adriene. He explains himself in the preface. For me, every novel the Ryira, elvin word meaning the two, are in is like welcoming two old friends. Listening to this latest novel is better than any movie sequel from any franchise. Make no mistake, Michael J Sullivan has created one of the best series in any genre.
Tim Gerard Reynolds delivers the perfect narration, capturing the wit, wisdom and irony that fill every page. This is one remarkable story. Reynolds does it justice.
Though it’s genre is fantasy, lovers of mystery, thrillers, drama and romance will all be satisfied. It is one of those rare novels where every page builds on the other.
I am forced to write this review on my iPhone, so forgive its brevity and any misspellings. What I want to leave you with is that whether this is your first novel of the Ryira or not, it is a story for the ages.
24 of 26 people found this review helpful
This was yet another perfect pairing of brilliant storytelling and masterful performance. I can't think of a better pairing of writer and performer than Sullivan and Reynold.
The world that Michael J Sullivan has created in the Riyria stories is so alive and vibrant. The characters are so well developed and really have a life of their own. Sullivan has written the story but he has done such an amazing job of it that I believe Royce and Hadrian are living and breathing somewhere.
I highly recommend buying this book and all the other books in this series. I love that each book can be read independently of the others, other than the original trilogy. Each story is fully developed and complete. This is another perfect fantasy adventure appropriate for all audiences, parental discretion always advised.
7 of 7 people found this review helpful
I get so excited when I see a new book from Sullivan and this lived up to all my expectations. Reynolds truly transforms the story with how he reads it, it made me look forward to my daily commute.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful
I have absolutely loved the previous riyria stories and have re-"read" them all multiple times. And while I enjoy hearing more of Royce and Hadrian tails, this story fell flat for me. Although it explains some of their history the plot never really went anywhere and was rather predictable. Also, I am not sure what happened while recording was going but one moment Tim Gerard Reynolds would sound like he was right there, or more like that you were right there, and then it would sound like he was really far away. Anyways, to summarize, this was not the best performance or story from the world of Riyria.
18 of 21 people found this review helpful
Michael J Sullivan is the finest of story tellers.
He knows his main characters to a fault, describing their best & worst attributes.
He also has a talent for developing interesting secondary characters.
The Disappearance of Winters Daughters was the best novel I've read this year. No pun intended. The only problem is waiting 12 months for the next novel in the series.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful