Cephrael's Hand : A Pattern of Shadow and Light

  • by Melissa McPhail
  • Narrated by Nick Podehl
  • Series: A Pattern of Shadow and Light
  • 32 hrs and 5 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

"All things are composed of patterns...." And within the pattern of the realm of Alorin, three strands must cross.
In Alorin...300 years after the genocidal Adept Wars, the realm is dying, and the blessed Adept race dies with it. One man holds the secret to reverting this decline: Bjorn van Gelderan, a dangerous and enigmatic man whose shocking betrayal three centuries past earned him a traitor's brand. It is the Adept Vestal Raine D'Lacourte's mission to learn what Bjorn knows in the hope of salvaging his race. But first he'll have to find him....
In the kingdom of Dannym...the young Prince Ean val Lorian faces a tenuous future as the last living heir to the coveted Eagle Throne. When his blood brother is slain during a failed assassination, Ean embarks on a desperate hunt for the man responsible. Yet his advisors have their own agendas, and his quest for vengeance leads him ever deeper into a sinuous plot masterminded by a mysterious and powerful man, the one they call First Lord.
In the Nadori desert...tormented by the missing pieces of his life, a soldier named Trell heads off to uncover the truth of his shadowed past. But when disaster places him in the debt of Wildlings sworn to the First Lord, Trell begins to suspect a deadlier, darker secret motivating them.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

This is a great book!!!

If you don't like large fantasy novels expertly written, then this is not the book for you

The start is a bit hard to keep up with, because from page-one you hit the ground running, there is so much going on and it keeps its momentum through out the book.

I had seen an advertisement for this book saying "if you like Brandon Sanderson and Robert Jordan you will love this book."
I am always skeptical when people say things like that, but in this case it was true.
Robert Jordan is dead, Brandon Sanderson completed the wheel of time based off of his notes, (I am a big fan of Brandon Sanderson.) But Melissa McPhail is the closest I have come to experiencing a story that has the feel of The Wheel of Time.

For many years epic fantasy has been a boys club, ( there have been many woman fantasy writers but none of them had the depth or complexity for me to see them as one of the top fantasy writers)
I am glad to say this is no longer the case, (in the past for years alone I have gone through about 1000 books, and I have found great female Fiction writers, science fiction writers, but until now I had never found a great female Fantasy author.
This series deserves its place in the top 10 if not the top five great epic fantasy series out there.
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- Dason

Average overall — good plot, subpar characters

Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

No, this is a book to listen to while doing something else.


If you’ve listened to books by Melissa McPhail before, how does this one compare?

This is the first one.


What three words best describe Nick Podehl’s voice?

Not best performance.


If this book were a movie would you go see it?

No.


Any additional comments?

About half way through the novel and I suspect I won't be able to finish it. Here are some of the things that I enjoy about this story. The overall story is interesting and the mysteries behind the plot are compelling. The magic system is unique. This is a long book that gives the buyer a lot of value for the credit. There are a lot of unique species that gives this story a very fantastic aspect, in the most literal sense.

The worst aspect of the book is the unrealistic interactions between many of the characters. For example, every time the story follows Trell "of the tides" you know several things will happen: he will be complemented about being intelligent and wise by strangers (he does not demonstrate these qualities at any time), he will be called handsome by random strangers, and he will fantasize about having sex with attractive women whom he recently met. He also gets lauded for his military genius but you never hear about any of the details. Yes, we are told that he was instrumental in winning a major battle, but what he did and how it was better than what others could do... who knows. This makes many (most?) of his interactions unrealistic. Trell, a major character, is able to single handedly sink this novel, but there other examples that I won't include in this brief review.

I did not feel that Nick Podehl was the best narrator for this novel. I've listened to five or six different novels narrated by him and this was the worst. His desert voices are especially grating. I don't think the story is dark or epic enough to have a deep voice like Michael Kramer, maybe Tim Gerard Reynolds. The way Podehl does the voices enhances the ridiculous way that some of the characters interact.

All in all, not the best and not the worst. For me, believability of characters is more important than fantastic story. I think that if the writing style is improved the next novels will be a real treat to read, but as is this series is for those with extra credits and nothing interesting going on.

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- Jason Grosch

Book Details

  • Release Date: 07-26-2016
  • Publisher: Podium Publishing