The Spirit War (The Legend of Eli Monpress, #4)
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The Spirit War (The Legend of Eli Monpress #4)

4.23 of 5 stars 4.23  ·  rating details  ·  2,005 ratings  ·  114 reviews
Eli Monpress is vain. He's cocky. And he's a thief.
But he's a thief who has just seen his bounty topped and he's not happy about it. The bounty topper, as it turns out, is his best friend, bodyguard, and master swordsman, Josef. Who has been keeping secrets from Eli. Apparently, he's the only prince of a rather feisty country and his mother (a formidable queen who's every...more
Mass Market Paperback, 320 pages
Published June 5th 2012 by Orbit (first published January 1st 2012)
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Community Reviews

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Soooo I seriously love this series. I just love it to death, and this book doesn't disappoint. We learn a TON about Josef, and get a lot of world-building context as the author builds towards the fifth (and final) book, released this fall. CAN IT BE NOW PLEASE?!

The tone of this one is a bit more serious than the previous ones, but it is definitely due, as the glibness of characters is stripped back to reveal WHY they're so glib, and what they're really hiding. And the ending...OMG THE ENDING I...more
This series started out as a fun, light, quirky fantasy with a cast of witty and lovable characters, but has subsequently grown with each book into one of my favourite series. All the ingredients for a good book are there: great writing, characters you can't help but love, lots of laugh out loud moments, clever and believable scenario resolution, quick pace and a detailed back story that cracks open at unpredictable moments to surprise the reader. But the thing I love most is that Rachel Aaron s...more
Courtney Richards
Oh. My. Word. There are hardly words to describe how I feel right now, but I'll give it a go.

At first, I was disappointed with Spirit War. I enjoyed seeing a lot of things from Josef's perspective, but there wasn't enough Eli to suit me. But the end-- oh the end!! Honestly, the last third of the book was an emotional roller coaster, and there aren't enough words on earth to explain how the ending made me feel. It's nice to see things finally all coming together, despite the dark(er) turn the nov...more
Overall: 6* (well-I have rated the previous ones in the series as 5*)

This is undoubtedly the best book in the series so far and I really love the way Rachel Aaron has woven the story here.

While Eli wants nothing more than an increased bounty on his head, Josef is forced to return to his homeland and take up his title as the Prince of Osera and fulfill his duty to provide the rightful heir to the kingdom.

The book is written from multiple PoVs and while the last one revolved around Nico, I was def...more

Full Review Over At Fantasy Book Critic

OVERVIEW/ANALYSIS: It’s always harder to review series books, the further you get into the series. For one, most of the plot points become spoilers for previous books, secondly it becomes a bit harder to keep repeating why you like this world or the over all series and lastly the highs of the previous volumes keep raising the bar of expectation to its zenith. So in spite of all the afore mentioned reasons, the Spirit War, book four in the Legend Of Eli...more
First posted here

With truly horrible covers and very little publicity, the first three books of Aaron's series flew completely under my radar for a long time. It wasn't until they were put together in an omnibus, The Legend of Eli Monpress, that I discovered this very fun series. Eli Monpress is the greatest thief in the world, and his ultimate goal is to get enough notoriety to have the largest bounty ever placed on his head. He is doing so in a world were every thing has a spirit, with some pe...more
Jun 10, 2012 Jenni rated it 5 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2012
There is no way I can be objective about this book because I've been waiting not-so-patiently for it for ages. And I have to say, it did not disappoint, which is a big thing, given how high my expectations had built.

I loved it to bits. There were so many moments where I went GLEEEEEEE! and possibly hugged the book. There is so much new information and a lot of interesting backstory and the last third of the book is non stop. The only thing wrong was that the book ended. How cruel to make us wai...more
I really like this series. It's more action than anything else, generally light and an easy read, but with touches of thoughtfulness that add enough depth to keep it interesting. And I like the way pieces of the big picture keep being gradually revealed, it definitely has kept me very curious while each individual book has had its own interesting story as well.

This one had a good twist with Josef's past. I liked how he responded to his mom and the situation on the island. And I really felt for p...more
Eli's backstory - finally! I haven't often read a story where it's the man who's the victim in a controlling, abusive relationship, and when the abuser is a goddess (or something like), what can you do? Eli's bravery and cunning in winning his freedom made my heart ache.

Which is probably what soured me on Miranda in this book. She came across as a shrill fishwife. She's become arrogant and so cocksure that she knows what a wastrel Eli is that she becomes almost unlikeable. One of my fave authors...more
Thomas Taylor
I've said it before, and I'll say it again. Rachel Aaron's Spirit books are what Locke Lamora wishes his sequels could have become. While Locke's sequels have gotten increasingly worse, the Eli Monpress books seem to only be getting better with each installment.

Spirit War fills a lot of backstory and information into Eli's world and all the characters around him. You learn a lot about Eli, Nico, Josef, and even Eli's parents.

The book culminates in some rampant action after starting off a little...more
What happens when the caper gets serious?

This is book #4 in the series, and darker than the earlier ones, though just as compelling. Much more is revealed about the world and how it works, which I appreciated. All of the characters are facing their "demons"- sometimes literally- and need to re-think their positions and values.

While this book's arc does resolve in the book, it also develops a lot of the overall arc of the series, and those questions are left hanging. Not a flaw, as long as they'r...more
This book falls somewhere between the two and three rating for me. While there's nothing I really dislike, my reaction falls somewhere in the "meh" category. None of the characters especially grab me. They all have a flair for the melodramatic. So whatever happens, there is one thing you can expect; the most dramatic/unexpected event will happen. "Luke, I AM your father!..."

In this installment, we find out a little bit more about Nico, a lot more about Josef, and quite a bit more about Eli. It'...more
4.75 stars--I really, really liked this book but there just a couple of small bits that took away from it getting a perfect score. First, twice (that I noticed) the wrong homophones were used; assent for ascent, and roll for role. It's pedantic, but it bothered me--that's what editors are for, right? The other annoyance was the revelation of a traitor that seemed pretty well telegraphed.

Aside from those small complaints, this was probably the best entry in the series. The scope continues to bro...more
Lauren Craft
I really wish that Josef could actually win a fight, with the greatest awaken blade there is, without nearly dying. I really wanted him to rip Adela a new one but instead she almost beats the crap out of him. WHY can't he just kick some butt sometimes!!!! I really found that absolutely infuriating!!! Although I think the shepherdess is a crazy lady I like that story line. I believe it absolutely necessary and look forward to how the weaver and the hunter take care of that situation. Yet I find m...more
Wow, marriage, death, intrigue, war! A whole load of those little plots that have been hinted at in the previous books are brought together in a face paced page turner, and the cliff hanger!!! Well I'm heading straight for the concluding part of this series! Brilliant!
3.5 stars. Much more serious than the previous ones in the series. Definitely progressed the story, though - will be interesting to see what happens in the last book.
Loved this book. I read the second half of this book all in one sitting because it was so engaging and I couldn't put it down. Highly recommended.
Rosa Aquafire
"I liked it."

Awright, well, the first half of this book is terrible and it loses a lot from Josef and everything relating to Josef being just the worst BUT I really enjoyed the mainplot stuff in it, Nara was a great villain, the war bits weren't nearly as terrible as I imagined, there was only ONE big stupid 50 page sword fight and the ending was pretty hardcore.

There's some weird gender shit in this one though and also, like, I think the book is supposed to want me to agree with Etmon and Miran...more
Score: 3.5/5
Weight: 40%

Eli Monpress, Nico and Miranda Lyonette continue to impress me in this book. Despite Eli not being my favourite in the first three books of the series, the new revelations about his past, as well as his sacrifices for his friends, make me see him in a new light. I always had a feeling that there was something more to him, and it was wonderful to see little pockets of his old life open up; by the end of the series, I really sympathized with him.

I felt a little dis...more
I have to say, I enjoyed the first couple of Eli Monpress books more than the second and third, because the first two were all about the caper. Three and four have become very serious, and in many ways standard, epic fantasy, filled with the clash of kingdoms, desperate magical battles and a sinister dark threat to the world.

It's well done, but it's not really what I signed up for based on the start of Book 1.

The other annoying thing, to me, is that four out of five significant characters are a...more
I feel like this was maybe a little uneven in the pacing. Like it started off a little slow, but the last part of the book was a little too much at once. It was still good, in any case.

We get a lot of backstory on Josef, which I've been wanting for a long time, since the beginning of the series, basically. After reading this one, I found that the characters I already liked, I grew to like even more, and the annoying characters continued to annoy me. I wouldn't mind if they went away.

The settin...more
The Spirit War is the fourth installment in Rachel Aaron’s Legend of Eli Monpress, a series that started out as a light and fluffy read but has grown continuously darker as it progresses. This most recent novel continues that trend, and also is considerably more epic than any of the first three volumes – our heroes are all over place in this one, momentous events are afoot, and – the title holding what it promises – there is a war going on (even though the actual fighting, once it happens, seems...more
This is the fourth book in Aaron's Eli Monpress fantasy series, which concerns the exploits of Eli, the world's greatest thief and a powerful wizard. at the end of the initial trilogy, Aaron had begun to reveal more about the nature of the world and what is really going on in it. The Spirit War continues this trend while telling a great story about how Eli, Josef, and Nico get involved in repulsing the invading Immortal Empress and her overwhelmingly powerful and numerous forces.
The Spirit War i...more
Shanna Swendson
I'm now glad I delayed reading The Spirit War even though I bought it soon after it was released because it makes the wait for the next one (November 20) shorter, and I was ready for the next one as soon as I finished it. This is a really fun romp of a series about a wizard who's able to charm the spirits that embody all things and get them to do things for him. He uses this power to become the best thief ever, but he tends to get into a lot of scrapes where he's forced to play the hero. I finis...more
Oh wow. Just wow.

Series review to come. One book to go.


Now THAT was a fun story!

My motivation for reading is simple. I read books to be entertained, and when I've finished reading them I want to feel happy. That's it. Really.

Reading the five books of Eli Monpress satisfied both requirements more simply than any other books I've read. Some books try to be so enlightening they ruin the entertaining part. Others are entertaining but have horrible endings. Or maybe they could be entertaining...more
Beth York
*bam* and we're off... book one, page one and welcome to a lovely series that will quickly hook you into its interesting grasp with its fantastical intrigues.

rarely do I get so heavily involved when starting a new book and/or a new author. the legend of eli monpress is one of those delicious rule breakers that stole me away right from the start. this happens by Aarons uncomplicated understanding and intimacy with the splendid world she has created for her characters. the author never gets lost...more
Danielle Shipley
In a world where everything from doors to swords to grains of sand has a living spirit… they all adore Eli Monpress, rogue wizard and self-proclaimed greatest thief in the world. But as much as the everyday spirits love Eli, no one loves him more – or with more dangerous obsession – than the Shepherdess, Benehime, a formidable power with a disturbing lack of attention to responsibility. She’ll pull any stunt to get her favorite back where she wants him, even if it means letting the inexorable Im...more
All right, this is a book I can get behind! While I thought the previous 3 books took too long to establish backstory and build towards the climax of the entire series, this book got right down to business and it was a huge improvement.

In fact, I would suggest skipping book 2 and just reading 1 and 3 and then this one. All the important mechanics are in 3 anyways. This book has an uncomplicated plot and hinges on individuals giving up their selfish desires, emotions, whatever for the greater goo...more
The Legend of Eli Monpress is a captivating and fun series about a charming thief, an ambitious swordsman and a woman with dark and mysterious powers. Eli Monpress has one goal and that is to become the man with the biggest bounty ever. He is determined to get famous with his thievery. Apart from being a thief Eli is also a wizard. In Aaron's world everything has a spirit from a simple stone, to a door, a flower, a pond, the sea, fire, the wind, etc. Wizards are the people who can communicate wi...more
Niki Hawkes
Via Book Reviews by Niki Hawkes at

I want to start out by sharing the overview for the first book:

Eli Monpress is talented. He's charming. And he's a thief.

But not just any thief. He's the greatest thief of the age - and he's also a wizard. And with the help of his partners - a swordsman with the most powerful magic sword in the world but no magical ability of his own, and a demonseed who can step through shadows and punch through walls - he's going to put his plan into effect....more
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Hello, my name is Rachel Aaron, and I write the Heartstriker books, a new Urban Fantasy series about misfit dragons, starting with Nice Dragons Finish Last. I also wrote The Legend of Eli Monpress fantasy series for Orbit Books about a wizard thief and the poor bastards who have to try and stop him. PLUS I'm also the author of the new, rolicking fun Science Fiction romance Fortune's Pawn under the...more
More about Rachel Aaron...
The Spirit Thief (The Legend of Eli Monpress, #1) The Spirit Rebellion (The Legend of Eli Monpress, #2) The Spirit Eater (The Legend of Eli Monpress, #3) Spirit's End (The Legend of Eli Monpress, #5) The Legend of Eli Monpress (The Legend of Eli Monpress, #1-3)

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