The Last Mortal Bond : Chronicle of the Unhewn Throne

  • by Brian Staveley
  • Narrated by Simon Vance
  • Series: Chronicle of the Unhewn Throne
  • 29 hrs and 45 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

The trilogy that began with The Emperor's Blades and continued in The Providence of Fire reaches its epic conclusion as war engulfs the Annurian Empire in Brian Staveley's The Last Mortal Bond
The ancient csestriim are back to finish their purge of humanity; armies march against the capital; leaches, solitary beings who draw power from the natural world to fuel their extraordinary abilities, maneuver on all sides to affect the outcome of the war; and capricious gods walk the earth in human guise with agendas of their own.
But the three imperial siblings at the heart of it all - Valyn, Adare, and Kaden - come to understand that even if they survive the holocaust unleashed on their world, there may be no reconciling their conflicting visions of the future.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Less Awful than Predecessor

If you've read the Providence of Fire (book 2 in this series) you're probably wondering whether you should throw a good credit after bad. I managed to overcome my revulsion for the last book and listen all the way through this one. It is not as bad as the last book; I would venture to say that it rises as far as "kind of okay."

I want to give Staveley some credit. The underlying story arc is pretty cool. There is some worthy intrigue. He has built some artifacts into this world that are really interesting particularly the Kettral soldiers and the Skullsworn. There is a hint of some good world building here.

From the last book to this one, Staveley has improved on his male characters. They're no longer crashing around incoherently doing things that don't make sense, even to them. In fact, he even does some really cool things with a few of them (which would take spoilers to explain).

His female characters are half-cooked. They are more like caricatures. Most of them are one dimensional. He makes some silly decisions when he tries to flesh them out. But worst of all is Adare. She doesn't make sense as a person. Staveley uses her to increase the drama artificially. She basically walks into each scene and does something really dramatic that screws everything up for other people to fix. Her motivations are all over the place. It is so prevalent that she bends the entire book around her idiotic misadventures. This makes is significantly less enjoyable.

Vance continues to give strong narration. I took points off as some of his accents are bleeding together.
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- Benjamin "Likes to listen while doing chores; likes to write reviews while he should be doing chores."

Uninteresting protagonists and story

While the author is an excellent writer, I wasn't able to garner much interest in the novel even with the superb narration. None of the trio sibling protagonists were all that interesting and many of the circumstances surrounding various betrayals either didn't have a credible foundation for committing the act or were clearly obvious. As an example, Adare intentionally stabbing her brother, Valyn, for fear that the person he sought to kill in revenge for their father's death was needed in order to save the empire. Or the betrayers of the Kettral on the island was so predictable it could have been foreseen from a fortune cookie.

Kaden was mostly aloof and seemingly caught up in some Zen-like trance through most of the story while Valyn seemed mostly homicidal with a few instances of kindness along the way. Adare's relationship with her newborn child seemed mostly superfluous even though much time was spent on it.

There was other problematic areas where conflicting ideas were presented but then were never clarified like when Kaden's Shin mentor claimed that none of the "young gods" were really gods but, actually, just Csestriim masquerading as gods.
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- Sailfish

Book Details

  • Release Date: 03-15-2016
  • Publisher: Brilliance Audio