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Distant Star (The Reminiscent Exile #1)

3.72  ·  Rating Details  ·  488 Ratings  ·  44 Reviews
For Declan Hale, the Shadowless Arbiter, life has been simple since he ended the Tome Wars and forced a cruel peace in the mythical realms of Forget. Exiled to Earth for his crimes, Declan spends his days managing a small bookshop.

So when a familiar looking corpse appears in the dead of night, spilling his scotch, Declan is less than amused. Especially because the body is
ebook, 224 pages
Published May 24th 2012 by Cedar Sky Publishing (first published May 23rd 2012)
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Dec 03, 2013 Ron rated it really liked it
Very very enjoyable read. I loved the main character--standard heroes start off weak and we read about how the come to their powers, but Declan starts as a legend who got exiled because everyone feared him too much. And, I mean, ending a way decades in the making, killing over 8 million people and nearly destroying the universe all in one fell swoop is sort of the thing to fear. Which is what makes me love him so much, really.

Declan has some issues. Who wouldn't? But it was interesting to see h
Sidney Raflores
Aug 26, 2014 Sidney Raflores rated it liked it
The "Distant Star", doesn't quite read like the first book of a new series. It reads like a book in a well establish fictional universe. Mainly because, there are so many epic events, so much back story that's hinted throughout the tale that it would make anyone wonder, where's the other books? Not that is a bad thing mind you, throughout the story, the author weaves into the ever expanding picture, hints of the protagonist, Declan Hale's, life. It's another good reason to keep turning the page. ...more
Jan 27, 2014 Lark rated it it was ok
Declan Hale finds himself returning to a world he never thought he'd see again after he was exiled. But he has no choice, especially not after he sees himself die - in his favorite grey waistcoat, no less.

It gives a bit of a Jim Butcher Dresden vibe, but a little different. It's not as relatable, to be honest. Whereas Dresden snarks and talks to the reader, Declan is solely a first person novel that doesn't break that fourth barrier.

I know the author more from his fanfiction than his novels, so
Stephanie Wolf
Jun 26, 2012 Stephanie Wolf rated it it was amazing
Imagine a world you could travel to using books. “Book Diving” is the ability to cross between the realms, and the Story Thread is what ties all the universes together.

Declan Hale, a hero to some, was exiled to True Earth after what he had done at the Battle of the Tome Wars. In an effort to hide the treasures of Atlantis, Declan and Tal did what they thought best. Unfortunately, others did not, and a great many others perished.

When Declan is visited by himself, only to watch himself die in his
Jul 14, 2012 Dijay rated it it was amazing
Have you ever heard a clock scream?

Distant Star is an engrossing tale which holds up a standard of excellency within Fantasy. Most books are slow-starting, or feature boring characters, or do boring things. Like Ender's Game, Joe Ducie's work illuminates not only what Fantasy could do, but what Fantasy could do for readers.

When I started reading this book, I decided I'd take it slow. Mainly I was studying for my last few exams, so I would read the book between study sessions and laugh if it was
Colin Craib
Sep 04, 2012 Colin Craib rated it it was amazing
Shelves: street-magic
I've read some stuff by Joe before, and it is all very well written. That being said, he can tend to get a bit wordy and overly epic when writing so while I was really looking forward to this book I wasn't quite sure what to expect. With that out of the way, let me say that it widely exceeded my expectations. It is easily one of the best books that I have read recently.

The world that is created is something that I have never seen done in such a fashion, but it works. It combines some of the best
Aug 31, 2013 Leslee rated it liked it
Shelves: urban-fantasy, 2013
While I admire Ducie's talent and he obviously has great ideas, I felt this book was overly frenetic and had some intense pacing issues. There was just too much crammed in to such a short novel and there was a lot of showing rather than telling that could have been handled better with say, another hundred extra pages of padding (Declan's love for Tad, for instance, and the love triangle with Clare, felt really forced to me because we didn't really see any of what happens between the three).

Jul 02, 2013 Ralph rated it really liked it
The first book I read by Joe Ducie was a short story that I found on Amazon for free months ago. At least, I think that was where I found it. It was called THE FORGETFUL LIBRARY, and was just a short story. I liked the Declan Hale character, and saw Ducie had this novel out, I was excited, yet it took me awhile to get around to actually getting it.

That being said, this novel, for my return to this realm, was awesome! Declan Hale has been exiled from his world, a world within the nether called Fo
R. Scott VanKirk
Jun 19, 2012 R. Scott VanKirk rated it really liked it
Distant Star
Joe Ducie

Enjoyment **** Plot *** Interactions *** Characters **** World ***** Originality **** Grammar **** Style ***

With Distant Star, Author Joe Ducie has produced a book that is a cross between Jasper Fford's Thursday Next series, Cornelia Funke's Inkheart and Roger Zalazny's Nine Princes In Amber series. That's a good pedigree.

Mr. Ducie has written an interesting and dense story that requires careful reading. It evokes Zalazny's style mor
Jim Bernheimer
Apr 11, 2013 Jim Bernheimer rated it it was amazing
I don't give out a lot of five star reviews. My criteria is when I finish a book and think, "I wish I had wrote that." If I do, then the book gets five stars. Joe Ducie's Distant Star gets five stars from me.

In the interests of full disclosure, I know Joe online and one of his short stories (Upon Crystal Shores) appears in the second volume of my Horror, Humor, and Heroes anthology series. Still, I am no shill. Joe has talent and I am certain he will do great things.

Joe gives the reader a vibran
Feb 24, 2016 Elisa rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this grumpy old 24 year old. That was the weirdest thing, he is so young, yet seen so much. Anyway, this is a story where you can jump through certain books to get to the story thread and then fight and kill over it. Lots of folks with magic, everyone has an agenda and you don't really know what is happening until it is over. There is a lot of backstory that slowly is explained. Lots of folks mad at him because he did a good thing, but caused a lot of damage to do it. Anyway, th ...more
Janet McNulty
Jun 15, 2012 Janet McNulty rated it really liked it
Shelves: reviewed
Distant Star follows the adventures of Declan Hale, an exile from a place where people can travel to other worlds, and he is stuck on earth, a place with no magic. It begins with an assassin trying to kill him and later Declan runs into his own dying self. This sets him off on a mission to prevent his death and figure out who is trying to kill him.

From the get go, the reader will find himself immediately engrossed in the story. I love the way it begins and it keeps the pace with its contemporary
Apr 04, 2014 Angie rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: urban fantasy fans
Recommended to Angie by: my son
Declan Hale is the lead character in this and he's immediately become a favourite character of mine. This book is just so good. Declan lives in Australia and he's not supposed to be using magic anymore. This doesn't go to plan when people from his past turn up needing help. And his past is such a good story. He reminds me of a young Harry Dresdon and I think that anyone who is a fan of the Dresdon files will love this book.

Its a strong novel for a new author, the book is well written, the charac
Matthew Legaspi
Dec 07, 2013 Matthew Legaspi rated it it was amazing
Ducie’s work is a cocktail mix of the best elements of fantasy, both classic and contemporary. A debut author, Joe Ducie, concocts his merry story like a bartender would mix me my tequila and pineapple juice: fast, sweet, sexy, and strong. Both the descriptive factors and the characters taste familiarly of the Dark Tower and the Dresden Files. This is a tale of love lost, redemption unfound, the schemes men make for power, and the remaking and unmaking of worlds. It’s a descent into madness and ...more
Apr 21, 2014 Rebecca rated it did not like it
I'm so glad this was a borrowed read and not a purchase.

I had just finished the In the Company of Shadows series (Evenfall et al) and was looking for a new series. Since this one started out with a book I could borrow for free, and it had an interesting concept, I thought I'd give it a try.

Basically, the book is about Declan Hale, a wizard of sorts (though they don't call themselves that in this universe) who helped end a major war called The Tome Wars five years ago, but not without great cost,
Jun 14, 2014 Mordie rated it it was ok
All the elements to like this book were there, but I didn't like it at all. In many ways the book told the story, instead of showing or gripping me into it.

The book starts with a scene, tells what happens and from there on it is a scene after scene - wait, where's the description of the worlds, what about the character's family, how about.. - yes. I found myself struggling to get to know the characters and like them. The reactions seemed weird and off and not knowing at all what was going on mad
Jul 19, 2014 Pedro rated it it was amazing
Can say enough good things about this book, and the author.
being a fellow west Australian im appreciative of an author that knows Australia for more than kangaroos and the outback as it does get tedious after a while.
but in regards to the book.
i honestly loved it,
it is well written and well thought out.
i ADORED the world that Jo Ducie built.
to me it felt so vibrant and responsive to the story.
the only one criticism i could possibly put in was the lack of forthright back story on the main
Ahmad Alkadri
Sep 01, 2013 Ahmad Alkadri rated it really liked it
Written grandiosely, Joe Ducie clearly shows that his writing skills is one of the highest notch I've ever countered. Great story, great beginning, though several scenes felt over-prosed, Distant Star marks the beginning of new and one of the best fantasy series I've ever read for years. Very enjoyable. Recommended.
N. Bradley
Jul 12, 2014 N. Bradley rated it it was amazing
I'm a fan of Joe's from long ago, and I'm ashamed it's taken me so long to get around to reading this. It's certainly not a comment on the book itself, which is fabulous.

Anyone familiar with Joe will be pleased to know that this is Ducie at his sterling best. An intoxicating mixture of accessible writing, fascinating ideas and ever present glimpse of something truly epic, just out of reach behind the curtain.

It's certainly a style that won't please everyone. As a reader, you're dumped head fir
May 22, 2014 Josh rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this book more than I expected to. I picked it up at the recommendation of a friend, and I'm definitely going to check out the sequel. That said, in hindsight there are so many bizarre little flaws in this book. For instance, the coolest concept in this book is the idea of the Story Thread and of being able to travel into your favorite novel and visit its world. This... isn't really used. Our protagonist travels to different worlds, but they are created by Mr. Ducie for this book speci ...more
Lindsay Simms
Sep 25, 2013 Lindsay Simms rated it it was amazing
How do I even begin to review this book? I finished it, along with the sequel, a week ago, but have been putting off writing this because I genuinely don't know how to word just how much I love this book.

It's been five years since Declan Hale ended the Tome Wars in a very, shall we say, direct way. Basically, he screwed over whole universes, sold his shadow, and lost his girlfriend. Because of this, he's been exiled to True Earth, and is living out his days drinking, writing a never-ending manus
Joana Aleixo
Jan 07, 2014 Joana Aleixo rated it liked it
Shelves: ebooks
* 3.5 Stars *

So I liked this book. It was nothing like I ever read before and I really really liked that evolved books so much. I wish I could enter a book and travel through all of these amazing stories and meet all the characters. I would be a dream come true.

I liked the book but I think it was kinda of confusing especially in the beginning. Things stared to make more sense in the second part but still, I think that were some things that are kinda vague and confusing.

Even with the character
Gordon Burroughs
Jun 18, 2012 Gordon Burroughs rated it really liked it
I enjoyed the novel, and I liked the concept of the Story Thread.....that particularly well envisioned books have spawned actual mini-universes in the greater cosmos that some talented people are able to visit, or utilize in some way to affect actual physical beings. People with enough Will are able to quite literally delve into a good book; I did wish that the concept was employed more, and hope that the author utilizes it more in the future.

The only drawback that I had with the book is that a
Haden Pike
Oct 10, 2015 Haden Pike rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Much like with Jim Bernheimer,I became aware of Joe Ducie because of his Harry Potter FanFiction back in 2008. You can definitely see elements of those stories in this one---Atlantas and the Infernal Clock, for example. Regardless, this was an absolutely amazing story. The idea that books have power is common in philosophical debates, but this is the first story I've read where this concept is physically manifested.
Feb 21, 2013 Jared rated it it was ok
Shelves: urban-fantasy
My major issue with this book is that there are no challenges presented to the protagonist.

For the first two-thirds of the book (yes, two-thirds), he does what others force him to do. He doesn't really make choices. In the last third, he is rescued, other people give him everything he acquires, and the group goes off to save the day. It isn't until the last tenth where he actually breaks away and does something on his own, but from there it's a straight shot to the goal. Literally no challenges.
Caragh Murphy
Nice idea, but the writing was entirely tell and not show. The plot unravelled more than progressed. For a book written in the first person, there was no emotional connection to the protagonist whatsoever.

It's a pity. There were just enough flashes of something interesting to make the book incredibly disappointing that it never got there.
Alex Jackl
Apr 27, 2014 Alex Jackl rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

I loved this series- clever, thoughtful, and full of good characters and interesting magic. The idea of story uhh especially , as literally world changing is fantastic.
Jul 07, 2015 Rachel rated it liked it
Even though it is the first book in the series to me it felt that something was missing. Like two or three books missing.
Nov 06, 2014 Alasse rated it it was ok
Shelves: scifi-fantasy
fast read, but it felt like I was reading a book far down in a series in an established universe, and I had no idea what was going on most of the time.
Aug 04, 2015 Lynn rated it really liked it
Full review to come.
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Joe Ducie (1987-) is a writer from Perth, Western Australia. By day, he charges a toll to cross a bridge he doesn’t own. Yet by night, in a haze of scotch-fuelled insanity, he works tirelessly on an array of stories both short and long. Joe possesses a fierce love of a smooth finish. Under no circumstances should you ask him just what that means.

Joe was born in Barrow-in-Furness, Cumbria in Novemb
More about Joe Ducie...

Other Books in the Series

The Reminiscent Exile (3 books)
  • Broken Quill (The Reminiscent Exile, #2)
  • Knight Fall (The Reminiscent Exile, #3)

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“Perfect endings... they don't exist, 'Phie. Only in stories, where nothing ever really changes. Here, right now, isn't a story. There is no happy ending, because it's not the end. Do you understand?” 3 likes
“Did you see a future for us, Tal?" I asked, but she only stared. "Did you see us waking up together? Smiling in the morning? Did you see us laughing and growing old? Did you see me loving you even more for every morning as the years flew past?" I took a deep breath and exhaled slowly. "Boy, I sure did.” 1 likes
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