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Brood of Bones (Lady of Gems)

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3.74 of 5 stars 3.74  ·  rating details  ·  521 ratings  ·  143 reviews
Cursed by constant sleepiness, Enchantress Hiresha has no time to marry and raise a family. From virgin to grandmother, all the women in her city are in their last trimester, power drained by a lurking sorcerer. Only the Lord of the Feast, a dangerous yet charming illusionist, is uncivilized enough to help.
Kindle Edition, 368 pages
Published November 15th 2013 by Amazon Digital Services, Inc. (first published September 28th 2011)
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Community Reviews

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Carol.

“I never learned the knack for waking. Consciousness hung over me like a sodden rag, weighing on my eyelids and muffling my ears, yet even my stifled senses did not spare me the indignity of hearing my name screamed across a public place.“

Sounds like me...

Brood of Bones is the first in a series about Hiresha, an expert in jewel enchantment and sufferer of severe narcolepsy. She has journeyed back to her hometown, Morimound, at the request of the Siri the Flawless, city arbiter. Accompanying Hire
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A.E. Marling
Nov 10, 2011 A.E. Marling added it  ·  (Review from the author)
Shelves: wrote
A story without fantasy is like a holiday without fireworks.

The fantasy genre has always lit my eyes with wonder, whisking me away to lands of great frights and greater friendships. I knew since my sophomore year in high school that I loved writing tales crackling with magic, and that passion only grew into a relentless pursuit of the craft of storytelling. I would like to thank my faithful readers, who have always encouraged me. I have learned so much from you. The praise directed toward this n
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Elspeth
I am finding this book hard to review.
The writing was good, the story was interesting its just that I found the main character an asshole.
In the beginning of the book you find out that before she was this all powerful, and rich enchantress she was poor. As well as being poor she was made fun of due to her narcolepsy, and made to feel not quite worthy of a normal life.
You would think this would have had some sort of lasting effect when she came into power. She could have taken that childhood, and
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Roger Eschbacher
An exceptionally cruel dark magic is plaguing the city of Morimound and Enchantress Hiresha must solve the mystery of who has infected the wombs of almost all the women of her beloved town with bony abominations. Simultaneously nearing the end of their nine month pregnancies, Hiresha races to find the culprit - an evil sorcerer, she suspects – and undo his brutal spell before the women of Morimound die horrifyingly painful deaths giving birth to these unchildren, this brood of bones.

As much an
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Phil Leader
I got this book because I wanted to read some of Marling's work and it seemed a good starting point. I downloaded it at the same time as a lot of other works, intending just to skim the first chapter of each and then decide which one I was going to read.

I read the first part of this novel and I was hooked. The story unfolds really well and there is real suspense. The writing is a joy to read and the descriptions of the world are really evocative.

The story revolves around Elder Enchantress Hiresh
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Anzu The Great Destroyer
Weird O_O pregnant women freak me out. But it's an interesting book, you should give it a try.


Free today*, 13th May 2013, on Amazon. Get it here.

*might still be free after this date - give it a try and see
Ariel
The Good
The writing style is excellent. Many times, especially with fantasy, there can be a tendency for the words to get in the way of the story. Thankfully, Marling avoids this. Some of the word choices, while a bit strange, became the way I connected with the main character, Hiresha.
I also appreciated how the romance in the story was handled. To be frank, you aren't slapped in the face with a lovesick insufferable walnut. It's nice. I enjoyed it.
The most notable, and my personal favorite,
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Kelsey
Sep 12, 2012 Kelsey rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: aspiring fantasy authors, people who enjoy non-Tolkien-like epic fantasy
Brood of Bones is worth reading for its unique characters, world, and storytelling, but ultimately it’s pleasant, not wowing.

The main character Hiresha is like a magical Lisbeth Salander. Both Hiresha and Lisbeth live in their own detached realities. They see people around them as illogical or inferior. They feel no compulsion for human interaction, and when they do seek companionship, they struggle to connect to others. They are also extremely powerful: Lisbeth can hack into any computer system
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Dawn
I admit I approached this novel with some reservations. Despite the fact that my own husband's work is "self published" and that a few friends of mine have gone the "small publisher" route, there is still a nervousness in stepping away from the taste-makers at the Big Six. Not that they don't publish plenty of lousy stuff, but at least you wont get something written by two goldfish via translation through a Kazoo.

So when I stumbled across a link to it for free download in Goodreads' new Ebook S
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Robin
Newcomer A. E. Marling does a bang-up job with this novel about a magic-wielder afflicted with a sleeping disorder. Her drowsiness does not equate boredom for the reader. On the contrary, "Brood of Bones" is a fantasy whodunnit, with Enchantress Hiresha cast in the role of arcane detective. The setting and the magic are skillfully portrayed; the characters are complex and not always predictable. Hiresha struggles not only with her sleeping problem, but with the past that has formed her; her posi ...more
Beth
I've been interested in reading some self-published books recently, but wasn't keen enough on the hunt, or confident enough in its success, to brave the wilds of the Kindle freebie woods myself. Luckily here comes Carol with a nicely positive review of A.E. Marling's Fox's Bride to lead me to this first book about Enchantress Hiresha.

The blurb will give you a pretty good idea of the basic plot of the book, so here are a couple of impressions.

Hiresha is a really interesting character. Her disabi
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Kelli Musser
I stumbled upon this completely by happy accident, via Twitter...nd I'm extremely happy I did. As a lifelong fantasy reader, I found myself bereft and sad in between books from current authors I enjoyed. I decided a new author would be worth a try.

Trust me, its worth the read.

The world of the Enchantress Hiresha is at once similiar yet astonishly different from your 'standard' fantasy world. Magic in this realm cannot be used in the waking world - which puts the narcoleptic Hiresha at a distinc
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Tea
I enjoyed this book... once I got a better understanding of Hiresha, the protagonist and narrator. That was a bit of a feat, though. I'm sure several readers would be turned off rather quickly, but there are rewards to sticking with A.E. Marling and waiting for the fuller picture.

The plot is essentially a mystery permeated with magic.

The world-building was the real draw for me. Marling seemed to have drawn on half a dozen non-European cultures to create his society, and that alone was a breath o
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Christina Kessler
Oct 11, 2011 Christina Kessler rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Anyone who likes fantasy
I love this!
The plot and characters in this book are so original and engaging. I love the sharp contrast in writing between when Hiresha is asleep (and hyperintelligent and powerful) and when she is awake (drowsy and confused). The Feasters are creepy and fascinating. I was on the edge of my seat until the last page! It's so hard to find fantasy that has strong female characters and tight plot. This is it.
Ines
Hiresha is an enchantress who struggles to stay awake, which helps her with her magic that can only be performed while she is dreaming. Unfortunately, this means she hardly lives in the real world. After receiving a letter from an old arbiter, she returns home to find most of the women there pregnant, from children to grandmothers. Hiresha decides to investigate what is really happening once she realises none of the future mothers has felt their babies yet.

I admit it took me a long time to warm
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Mike
I love it when I see something genuinely new, something that isn't the same old story in the same old setting retold for the far-too-manyth time, and that is what Brood of Bones is. Though it's not without its flaws, it's certainly the kind of book that makes me want to read the sequel.

First, let's talk about the homonyms and malapropisms. It's usually unfortunate when an author attempts a "formal", "high" or "period" style, not only because it makes the characters seem remote and unemotional, b
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BL834
I really liked this book. Torn between a 4 and a 5, I'm going to have to let it sit for a while.

The writing was invisible (ie: I didn't notice I was reading text so much as simply knowing the story as it unfolded) while at the same time it seemed to provide very vivid, almost technicolor, visuals.

The "romance" element was nicely done. Not very romantic, I suppose, but there was a depth of feeling lurking just below the surface.

I did not like the protagonist at all for 90% of the book - and yes
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Christopher Kellen
Brood of Bones is the story of Hiresha, an enchantress with what appears to be narcolepsy. However, instead of treating this with humor (as so many works do), Mr. Marling treats it with the utmost seriousness. In fact, for Hiresha, it’s actually an advantage in her line of work — but I won’t go into any more detail so as to avoid spoilers.

In the past two months, I have undertaken to read five different books, and have finished none of them. With some of them I barely made it past the first few p
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M.L. Chesley
This is a well crafted, intellectual piece of High Fantasy. I feel that my review might clash with the intellect level with which it was written. A. E. Marling has created a very unique fantasy world, at least from my viewpoint, and well thought out characters.

Elder Enchantress Hiresha is a powerful magic user, but with many flaws. The largest being her inability to live in the waking world. She has been gifted twelve gowns and her station requires she wears them all. That alone would make me ex
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Gregory Close
In short, Brood of Bones is an excellent novel.

- The cover was beautiful, and it led me to click through to the book blurb.
- The blurb was intriguing, and it led me to click on the link for a free sample on Kindle.
- The free sample sucked me into the story immediately, and without hesitation I bought the full Kindle version.

I was blown away by the originality of the setting and the magic system as well as the endearing imperfection and authenticity of the characters. The prose was effortless an
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Emily
This book was definitely a fast read... there was a lot of action without a lot of down time, and the mystery that served as the main plot point really drove the story along.

Our main character, Elder Enchantress Hiresha was... an interesting character. I'm pretty sure we weren't supposed to like her, but I'm not entirely sure about that. She's arrogant, completely out of touch with how others feel, and she's pretty damn selfish. But, she's the only one who has a chance of figuring out what the
...more
Candace Pettit
I loved this book. I was fascinated by the world created by the author. The setup of the magical system for enchantresses was creative and interesting. I found it fascinating to read a fantasy novel but clearly recognize elements of the detective genre in it.

Hiresha is a unique protagonist. I can completely relate to her, being a female who can sometimes be straight-forward, blunt, formal, and not one to suffer fools lightly. Tethiel is even more interesting, filling the anti-hero role without
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Victoria Case
Well, I liked the book but it was very, very, very slow to get going (at least it seemed like that to me). Hiresha's having a hell of a time with her self-confidence, believed shortcomings and a whole city of women all pregnant at the same time. I'm not sure if I'll read the other "adventures" of Hiresha or not, the writing was good, the characters' dialogue was hilarious in places and once the book finally got going it was a decent who done it (or who is doing it???) read. Overall not bad.
Ddsun
Want to read something utterly different? Utterly fascinating? This is your book.

I have to admit that I initially fell in love with that beautiful cover, but this book won my heart. The heroine has a unique problem that could have ruined her life. Instead, it was the key to a life she never imagined. Reviled as a child, she has become the noble sponsor of her home city and an Enchantress.

She returns home to find every woman in the city "blessed" with the very thing she longs for - pregnancy. Onl
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Daniel Clark
I loved this book. Well there was the perverted guy at the end, but anyways. The main character was hilarious. She has such a funny way of relating to other people and herself. The world the book is set in is vibrant and the magic is fun.
Rating: PG-13 for thematic material
Wench
This book was really tough to get in to and read, especially since I just had a baby two months ago. But, it's interesting and DIFFERENT. And could use a better editor, although I could say that about nearly every book I read. But good enough I'm adding the sequel to my to-read list.

TW: forced pregnancy, pregnancy complications, mention of child sexual abuse, violence
Gretchen
Astonishingly original. Can't recommend it highly enough to fantasy readers.
Jaleta Clegg
I picked this book up as a diversion, thinking I could put it down anytime and not expecting much. Instead, I was fascinated. The feel is not the normal Tolkeinesque high fantasy. This book has all sorts of intriguing cultural things going on. There are lots of layers to the emotions and the story. I found it to be a complex, different story than most fantasies.

If you're looking for something unusual, give this story a chance. I'm very glad I did.
JoAnne
This is the story of a lonely woman who never learned tact and does not like her job as an Elder Enchantress. She is weighed down by having to wear many dresses. The author did not explain why. The woman, Hiresha, has come to Morimound because she wanted to visit the man she had wished to marry when she was a girl. Her old teacher called out to her. Sri was imprisoned for being pregnant. Hiresha notices that all of the women and girls of child bearing age were pregnant. She gets Sri released and ...more
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The Great Amusing...: Free Copy on Amazon 1 4 Mar 20, 2013 05:56PM  
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5263747
A.E. Marling wrote his first fantasy novella after his freshman year in high school. In college, he found nothing gave him a greater urge to write than science lectures, and he sat through a lot of ‘em. He has yet to repent his fascination with fantasy and is intrigued by its grip on the human imagination.

Both ambidextrous and word-voracious, his diet ranges from Arthurian legends to Jane Austen.
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Other Books in the Series

Lady of Gems (4 books)
  • Fox's Bride
  • Gravity's Revenge
  • Dream Storm Sea
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