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Harpy's Flight (Windsingers #1)

3.54  ·  Rating Details ·  1,183 Ratings  ·  44 Reviews
A reissue of classic backlist titles from the author of the best selling Farseer Trilogy and The Liveship Traders books. HARPY'S FLIGHT was Lindholm's first novel, and the first in the WINDSINGERS series, which introduced her popular gypsy characters, Ki and Vandien.
Mass Market Paperback, 320 pages
Published January 14th 2001 by Voyager (first published 1983)
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Mar 31, 2013 Lucinda rated it liked it
This mesmerizing tale of love, adventure and magic is beautifully written and a truly timeless classic.

I was a huge fan of Robin Hobb’s work when she used to write novels as Megan Lindholm, such as ‘The Ki and Vandien Quartet’ which introduced me to a great writer. I certainly feel that Harpy’s Flight projects the qualities of a great fantasy writer and those raw traits that the author possessed before the creation of epics (such as the Farseer Trilogy in which Fitz Chivalry was born). This ric
Feb 27, 2010 Nikki rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy
Harpy's Flight was written before the books that Lindholm wrote as Robin Hobb. This is evident in several ways -- the quality of the writing and plotting, the less rich characterisation, the fact that some characters seem almost like test runs for later ones (Rhesus from this book for Restart in Liveships, for example). Her potential also shows in the brightly described world, in the descriptions of cultures and rites, in the quality of the writing and the way it can grip you even when the first ...more
May 19, 2014 Jeremy rated it it was ok
I love Robin Hobb, but I wouldn't recommend this as a first read for anyone new to her work. Compared to the rich characterisation and deftly interwoven plots of her work as Hobb, Lindholm, in this novel anyway, reads more like a writing workshop offering. The characters are flat, the drama seems contrived. The setting is interesting and well described, but the world doesn't feel as expansive and diverse as the six duchies and the cursed shores of her work as Hobb. I would recommend reading the ...more
May 21, 2012 Rob rated it really liked it
...Harpy's Flight is not Lindholm's best novel but it is still an impressive read. The emptiness Ki experiences after the loss of her family and the violence she unleashes on their killers is heartbreaking. Whatever the technical flaws of this novel, on an emotional level is works very well. It is very clear that there is a lot more to discover about this world in the later three volumes. I think I saw a few more imperfections in the novel the second time around but I am still glad to have my co ...more
Jacoline Maes
Not impressed, I don't think I'll be continuing this series. It doesn't intrigue me. It reads fast, but I couldn't like the characters and I thought the storyline to be quite dull. I'll stick to reading the books Margaret Lindholm wrote under her pseudonym Robin Hobb.
Feb 29, 2016 Amy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: book-club, fiction
I would never have picked this up were it not for Book Club as I've always avoided Fantasy.

However, I have to say this wasn't as bad as I feared. Fantasy is often lumped in with Sci-Fi as a genre, but I didn't find this book confusing or annoying as I do with most Science Fiction.

I understood what was going on most of the time (in stark contrast to Sci-Fi) and how the book was trying to portray Ki's new-found grief. Likening Sven's family's devotion to harpies to that of organised religion was
I've already read some of the Robin Hobb books.
I think this misses the details the later books have.
Still a good book though.
Jun 18, 2015 Bryan rated it liked it
I came to this book as a huge Robin Hobb fan, but my only previous experience with her Megan Lindholm penname is her short stories. This is not only my first Lindholm novel, but it’s also the first novel she ever wrote under either of her pseudonyms. Being such a fan of hers, I was predisposed toward liking this story, and like it I did, although it has a few flaws.

In all fairness, this is her first novel – unfortunately, it read like a first novel, especially in view of her excellent Hobb mater
Aug 29, 2015 Teri rated it liked it
It is obvious this is an early novel of the writer Megan Lindholm or Robin Hobb. The woman at the center of the story is both naive and supposed to have been a teamster in this realm for years traveling through the same mountains she crosses at a new and dangerous pass during the wrong time of year. Yet until she picks up a companion she is unfamiliar with so much of the fauna and lore of the area. Leaving it unbelievable that she is not simply dropped into this world from a completely separate ...more
May 24, 2014 Cissa rated it really liked it
I love world-building, and this is an excellent world. Five sentient races, each of whom is very different from each other, with difficulties in reconciling such and working together.

This book (while it read as a stand-alone, there are apparently others set in the world) focuses on the relationships between the humans and the harpies. Some humans hate them; some worship them. What happens when these collide? The harpies are well-drawn, though- and this might be a spoiler- in the end it looks lik
Aug 27, 2010 Shayna rated it it was amazing
The first chapter of this book gripped me. I love the creative freedom that Hobb has when she writes as Megan. I read this book before I read anything by her as Hobb and I enjoy both styles of writing although I find that as Hobb she is more restricted and rather depressing at the end of each trilogy.

The fact that Ki isn't a young, doe-eyed thing as so many fantasy protagonists HAVE to be these days to be enjoyable. I feel that Hobb put a lot of her own pain, joy and experiences into this series
Jun 14, 2016 LemmiSchmoeker rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Ich fürchte, ich bin ungeduldig geworden mit der Fantasy-Literatur. Wie schon beim letzten Fantasy-Buch musste ich auch dieses abbrechen – diesmal schon nach einem Kapitel, also rund 20 Seiten.

Selten hatte ich es mit so belanglosen, atmosphärefreien Beschreibungen zu tun, die sich beispielsweise die ersten viereinhalb Seiten in einschläfernder Weise mit einer Klettertour befassen. Auch ist schon der erste Satz ein gefängniswürdiges Stilverbrechen: „Die Frau war ein winziges Fleckchen an der senk
Apr 25, 2010 AtlantaTwin rated it liked it
Had I read this before she started writing as Robin Hobb, I don't think I would've moved on -- and I would've greatly missed out! It's interesting to read the earlier works. The descriptions are just as fantastic, as I found myself sweating, heart pounding and holding my breath while reading a few key scenes. The despair, lonliness and need to be free come truly through every page -- almost too much at times for me to want to move on. I found the transitions between flash-back and real time diff ...more
Nov 18, 2012 Dymphie rated it it was ok
'De Vlucht' een nieuwe vertaling van een al wat ouder werk (uit 1982) van Megan (ook bekend onder de naam Robin Hobb). En een beetje een tegenvaller. Veel onevenwichtiger dan haar ‘ Boeken … ‘ trilogieën. Teveel verschillende types, die alleen maar even aangekondigd worden (Denen?), niet goed uitgewerkte personages. Maar af en toe wel een blik op een intrigerende wereld, alleen komt die er niet helemaal uit. Rare overgangen, lijkt soms wel of er een stukje tekst ontbreekt, of ligt dat aan de ver ...more
William Cardini
Jul 21, 2016 William Cardini rated it really liked it
Shelves: faves, new-read-2016
Although I fiercely love Robin Hobb's books, it took me a long time to try a Megan Lindholm novel. I was surprised to discover that this was her first book, since so many elements of her writing as Robin Hobb seemed strongly present in this book (a visceral phsysicality, emotionally devastating, intense descriptions of cold and privation).

This book only pales in comparison to the Farseer books. It's much better than most fantasy. I also like that it's short and wraps up the main conflict, even
Feb 12, 2015 Preston rated it liked it
So I finally got around to acquiring all of the books by Robin Hobb's original writing name, Megan Lindholm. This book was a good read with a very strong female protagonist. I particularly enjoyed how Robin Hobb exercised the method of story telling where concurrent to the present being written, she would occasionally go back a few months and have a story in the past also being developed because of the influence of the past with the present.
Jul 31, 2015 Angharad rated it liked it
Not really sure how I feel about this book. I enjoyed it well enough, and I found the different cultures and races interesting (I was disappointed that we didn't get to hear more about them actually). But I never became particularly invested in the storyline or the characters, and throughout the book I never really felt any emotion stronger than mild curiosity.

It was fine, it just didn't really grab me I guess.
Oct 27, 2010 Janet rated it really liked it
This author is a great story-teller, no matter what pseudonym she uses. I was curious to see if there was a big difference in style compared to her writings under 'Robin Hobb,' especially since she had written that readers often greatly prefer the works under one name over the other. But I enjoyed this book - and have also liked all of the Hobb books that I've read - and am eager to start the next in the series.
Liz Cee
Apr 04, 2014 Liz Cee rated it it was amazing
I truly enjoyed this. The characters believable and the plot well-drawn. I started reading some Megan Lindholm (a.k.a.) Robin Hobb's short stories in a couple of anthologies and really enjoyed them. They led me to this book, and I'm glad the author has many titles to her name. Wonderful fantasy!

Feb 22, 2016 Vorbis rated it liked it
3 1/2 stars. So this is what Robin Hobb books would look like with a happy ending. Still an amazingly crafted world, full of monsters and heroes. Very well written. I like the casual way she puts you in the middle of the world, with some explanation but mostly just letting details unfold and assuming you'll catch up.

I liked it, and I think I'd like to read the sequel though god only knows where I'd get my hands on it.
Oct 25, 2012 Jesseka rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy, fiction
Not as strong as Hobb/Lindholm's later work but still a good read.

Though Lindholm spins beautiful and complex fantasy worlds it is her understanding of what it means to be human that keeps me returning to her books. In Harpy's Flight Lindholm explores grief, revenge and how our own cultural upbringing and experiences shape our experiences of the world and misunderstanding of others.

I look forward to reading the rest of the quartet.
Allen Garvin
Feb 19, 2008 Allen Garvin rated it really liked it
Shelves: high-fantasy
Lindholm's (aka Robin Hobb) first novel. Not up to the quality of her later books, but some hints of her ability to deftly draw interesting characters is present. The novel starts with Ki (A Romni, sort of a Gypsy-like culture) taking vengeance on a Harpy next. Several flashbacks throughout the novel show what led to that action, and the consequences of that vengeance. The pace is rather sluggish, but the characters are believable and interesting. A quiet and introspective fantasy.
Noella  Van Looy
Dit is het eerste deel in een reeks met in de hoofdrollen Ki en Vandien. Een groot deel van dit eerste boek gaat over Ki's verleden. En dan ontmoet ze Vandien, en samen maken ze een tocht door een gevaarlijk gebied.
Ik vond het goed geschreven en heb ervan genoten. Ik ga zeker ook de volgende delen lezen.
Jul 23, 2008 Nicole rated it really liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
Ki has lost her family to the harpies but to live she continues traveling as a teamster for hire. Vandien has joined her but Ki is not terrible sure she wants this partner. He may become the next victim if the harpies catch up with her.

Note Ki and Vandien were first in the short story "Bones for Dulath"
Linda Humberstone
Oct 16, 2012 Linda Humberstone rated it really liked it
Thoroughly enjoying this series by Megal Lindholme, on the 2nd book now and will certainly read the others. Particularly good if you have a lot on your mind as the story enables you to switch off for a while! As usual for her books this set also explores different cultures in an alternative world but is done so well that it do not seem bizarre.
Mar 24, 2016 Linda rated it really liked it
Am having a bit of a Robin Hobb withdrawal, having now caught up with her newest series. So decided to try some of her books under the Megan Lindholm pseudonym. I liked this first entry into the Windsinger series and have already reserved the next book. The world-building is top-notch, and the characters and plot are involving.
Jeanne Johnston
Sep 14, 2014 Jeanne Johnston rated it it was amazing
Ahhh. This was not inferior to the Robin Hobb series, just smaller and more personal. There were a few typos and obvious editing goofs, but I can ignore them because I know she refined her skills incredibly. Just when I despair at losing old friends, she creates new ones. Thoroughly enjoyed it and glad I have the next one queued up.
Apr 01, 2008 Oyceter rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I adore Ki, the heroine, who is damaged and broken and out for revenge and falling to pieces while also completely controlled. Lindholm is great at conveying the claustrophobic atmosphere of Ki's in-laws' place, and at showing Ki's silent, devastating grief.

Full review:
Junkie for the Written Word
Jul 12, 2016 Junkie for the Written Word rated it really liked it
I'm not sure how it's possible I went this long without knowing Robin Hobb also wrote under this name. It's evident that this is one of her earlier works, but the story is still strong and sucks you in completely.

And it adds fuel to my theory that the author uses her real life enemies for her main characters. I mean, she really just abuses the hell out of them.
Pam Baddeley
Sep 17, 2015 Pam Baddeley rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Re-read this novel a few years ago and still loved it. The beginning, where Ki is climbing up the cliff to exact vengeance on the harpies who murdered her family is absolutely stunning and gut wrenchingly emotional.
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The author also writes under the pseudonym Robin Hobb. Her real name is Margaret Astrid Lindholm Ogden.
More about Megan Lindholm...

Other Books in the Series

Windsingers (4 books)
  • The Windsingers (Windsingers, #2)
  • The Limbreth Gate (Windsingers, #3)
  • Luck of the Wheels (Windsingers, #4)

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“You needed the bitter edges of life to make it real, to let you taste what was still sweet.” 3 likes
“Choose life, Ki. Choose it one more time.” 2 likes
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