The Disappearance of Winter's Daughter

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By Alyson Williams on 12-14-17

Not the best Riyria story

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.

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16 of 17 people found this review helpful

By Charles Atkinson on 12-12-17

This is Entertainment! Dilly Dilly!

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.

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16 of 17 people found this review helpful

By Gina on 12-30-17

By Mar! A brilliant addition to my favorite Chronicle

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.

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6 of 6 people found this review helpful

By Lore on 01-03-18

More Riyria, nuff said!

Royce and Hadrian are back and this time Royce's past actions result in a unique opportunity for the duo that is sure to put them at odds. The wealthy merchant Gabriel Winter has tracked down Royce (no easy task) because many years ago he experienced the "Year of Fear" when Royce terrorized his home city of Colnora. He has sought out Royce because he believes that his daughter is dead at the hands of her noble husband and he seeks retribution. He wants those responsible to pay in blood and offers up coin for every body that Royce produces; however, if it it turns out that she is alive then he is also offering a fixed sum for her safe return.

Of course Royce and Hadrian agree to the job for opposite reasons and it is a perfect circumstance to play off their contrasting personalities. As one would expect, the investigation into her disappearance is not that straight forward and it will take the unique skills that they both bring to the table in order to sort it out.  This is a classic investigative story wrapped in a fantasy setting, and Michael J. Sullivan pulls it off nicely. The colorful side characters keep it entertaining and Royce may have finally met his match in the old widow Evelyn, who isn't intimidated by him one bit. :)

If you are a fan of Riyria then do not hesitate to pick this one up. However, keep in mind that this is more of a stand alone story that must get by on its own merit as there is no overarching story arc to move forward, and that absence does not go unnoticed. Tim Gerard Reynolds is at the mic and there are none better, so once again the Sullivan/Reynolds combo offers up a great listen.

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3 of 3 people found this review helpful

By Stardrifter on 12-11-17

A fantastic addition to the series!

Riyria is one of those series that I have read more than once. Or, to be a little more specific, read, then listened to, then listened to again. I don’t normally read or listen to any book more than once, these days. But, this is one of those series that never gets old or boring for me. I love a character-driven story, and Royce and Hadrian are very, very easily my two favorite characters in all of fantasy to read about. That’s not even an exaggeration. I read a metric ton of fantasy, and Royce and Hadrian are yet to be dethroned from being supreme emperors of my favorite fictional characters.

That said, when a kickstarter happens for a new Riyria story, I happily throw money at it as soon as possible. In this case, I opted for the audiobook, because I knew that I wouldn’t have time for the print version right away. I was right in guessing that too, I’ve had this book on my kindle for almost a month, and still didn’t get a chance to consume it until the audiobook was released. Nevertheless, I wasn’t disappointed. I am never disappointed. Parts of this book had me absolutely grinning. Parts of it made me angry, and parts made me sad. Even the author’s note had me tearing up a little (it was super sweet, guys).

Tim Gerard Reynolds is one of my favorite narrators, and while I would probably have stumbled upon his work without any help, my first listen of his excellent narration skills was Theft of Swords. So, he is Royce and Hadrian, on some level, to me. Giving them a good voice- giving Royce all the cynicism he needs and Hadrian all the good-natured optimism he needs, made them even more special. This one is just as much so.

This particular volume was just fantastic. This was a really great addition to the series, and I had a really hard time pausing it to do things one normally doesn’t bring audiobooks to. Work meetings, et cetera. It was as engaging as every other book in the series, it was well plotted, well written and I didn’t guess the ending right at the beginning. That’s all I need in a Riyria story, really. The ending of this one was satisfying and left me wanting more adventures!

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3 of 3 people found this review helpful

By David on 12-08-17

Extraordinary, spell binding!

I have been a huge fan for years of Royce and Hadrian and this 4th book in the series is by far the best yet. Michael Sullivan's writing is exceptional and coupled with the reading prowess of Tim Gerard Reynolds, the output is a suspenseful, captivating, and at times humorous; altogether delightful. The relationship between Royce and Hadrian continues to evolve in the fourth year of their partnership in a way that remains intriguing leaving the reader wanting more. Superlatives just don't do this story justice, including the reading performance. If you are new to the Royce and Hadrian, start at the beginning. You will enjoy the journey very much.

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3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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