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Myrren's Gift (The Quickening #1)

3.83  ·  Rating Details ·  3,827 Ratings  ·  154 Reviews
For the sake of an imperiled kingdom, the line between "traitor"and "savior" must blur . . . and vanish.

Though barely a teenager, Wyl Thirsk must now assume the role he has been destined for since birth: commander of the Morgravian army -- an awesome responsibility that calls him to the royal palace of the crown prince Celimus. Already a cruel despot who delights in the su
Paperback, 528 pages
Published January 31st 2006 by Harper Voyager (first published November 26th 2003)
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(showing 1-30)
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Apr 20, 2012 Camden rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: no one
Shelves: never-finished
This book is so bad that I started rewriting it before I even finished it. Which I have not yet. And have no intention of doing unless I run of material in the rewrite.

Have some reasons why I had to leave a public space while reading it because I thought I was going to scream/throw up. This books hits a level of misogyny that I wasn't aware was possible given the writer is a woman. There is a moment of rape apologism (rape apology?) that made me want to puke. There is a systematic and state-cond
Oct 15, 2007 Raerae rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: those with nothing better to do
It started off with potential, but pretty much destroyed it later on. The Gift was an interesting one, but rather ruined it for me in having access to memories and body would create interesting conflict to have seen Wyl struggle through that.

Good guys are good, bad guys are bad. Anyone in between pretty much get killed off. Good guy falls in love with Love Interest, bad guy wants Love Interest. Cue pointless journey and dogs appearing out of nowhere to help whenever a fight doesn't
Dead Stuff
Jul 14, 2014 Dead Stuff rated it did not like it
Myrren's Gift is a brilliant example of how treating the text as unreliable improves it beyond measure.

This could be the story of Celimus, a boy born into a tragic fate he cannot hope to uphold. His mother has been forced into an arranged marriage with a much older king to secure trading rights, not for love. Refusing to bend her will, she raises her son to be brilliant, ruthless and stand up to his father...not understanding that a boy born in a house of no love cannot lead his people. Too late
Jun 28, 2011 Lowed rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: ALL FANTASY LUNATICS
Shelves: books-read-2011
Just when I thought I had Fiona Mcintosh all figured out, she gives me this jaw-breaking twist that ended the life of one of my favorite characters- which in turn led to the throwing of the hardbound copy of this damn book!

Yeah yeah. I got over that part now.

But seriously, you thought Robin Hobb was cruel to her characters? Then you have not read McIntosh.
May 17, 2012 Nita rated it did not like it
Terrible, TERRIBLE series. I was silly enough to buy all three books at once and so i read (or skimmed when i just could not take it anymore) the whole series.

0/5 . I'd give it less if i could. I recommend it to no one. Ever.
Dec 17, 2009 Katilian rated it did not like it
Shelves: fantasy
The concept behind this series is an interesting one. Unfortunately, the execution is weak. The three-book plot relies on character stupidity to keep it going, and the prose reads like a Harlequin parody. I kept reading mainly to see how bad it could get.
Jun 10, 2015 Fanfan rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: No one
Recommended to Fanfan by: Got it as a freebie, and I'm glad I didn't pay for it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Lisa H.
Mar 21, 2014 Lisa H. rated it it was ok
Shelves: fantasy, saga
I am so disappointed in this book and its sequel (and I'm assuming will be equally disappointed w/ the third one, but hey, I spent the money on it, I'm going to read it.)

First off, a glowing recommendation by Robin Hobb, author of TWO of my favorite fantasy trilogies (Farseer, Tawny Man). What a damn lie. Hobb is an amazing writer and I can't imagine she would honestly rave about this trite piece of barely-adequate crap. I should know better than ever go by rave author blurbs (except Harlan Elli
Nov 13, 2008 Rovie rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2008
In some respects, Myrren's Gift is an average fantasy romp with everything you'd expect in a fantasy novel; court intrigue, battles, magic, a bit of romance etc etc. At times it's just a little tedious because it feels like I've read all of this stuff before. Certain charters seem to lack depth, and perhaps also intelligence, and it is frustrating to watch said characters trying to solve problems when the answer is so, so obvious.

However, the book certainly isn't terrible. There are well writte
Aug 19, 2010 Doc rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: No oneI
I've had to change my position on book burning after reading this orc entrails and tripe. I was dragged, jerked and jolted for 75 pages of agonizing uncharismatic characters, weak premise and terrible dialogue. Luckily,before too much self torture; I did some reconnaissance on this affliction i was reading and found, many poor souls had suffered far further reading then i and came to the same conclusion.

i should have left this in the thrift store bin in which i plucked it.

Save yourself, your bra
Sep 21, 2014 Nenya rated it did not like it
Shelves: dnf
DNF 5 chapters in. It's a fantastic fantastical (as in, magical) far as I can see. But I don't hold with cheapening the story by introducing titillating torture. Oh sure, it's the bad guys torturing, but it was so overtly sexual and pointless. Perhaps it's done to show how 'bad' the bad guys are... Rubbish. It's done just to introduce questionable sexual material into an novel while maintaining the fiction that it is "clean".
Jan 05, 2016 Leslea rated it it was amazing
Could not put this book down! So excited this is the first in a trilogy as I now have 2 more great reads to look forward to. This book is rich in characters, landscape, dialogue and plot. I have fallen madly in love with Wyl and cant wait to see what happens to him. Fiona McIntosh is a genius.
Martin Owton
Nov 06, 2012 Martin Owton rated it did not like it
A strong contender for the worst book from a major publisher I've ever read. Chock full of poor characterisation, point of view shifts, redundant plot threads and improbable twists.
Jan 01, 2010 Laurie rated it liked it
Excellent plot, with many twists. Unfortunately the author felt it necessary to include graphic details of torture and violence. I skipped those pages and finished it in short order.
Sep 08, 2015 Kristi-anne rated it it was amazing
I don't know why so many bad reviews, I found this trilogy awesome, I couldn't stop reading it, I couldn't put it down till done such awesome twists , I loved it!!!
Rabbit {Paint me like one of your 19th century gothic heroines!}
I've been trying for days to get into this one. So I'm going to DNF on page 9.
Nov 13, 2016 Loren rated it really liked it
Not so sold on the third-person writing style but the story hook is great and works well.
Jul 09, 2015 Steve added it
Shelves: bookreporter
Fiona McIntosh is making a name for herself in Australia, where all three volumes of "The Quickening" already have been released. This first volume, MYRREN'S GIFT, which recently hit shelves here in the U.S., is a stunning stateside debut that will keep you proclaiming "just one more chapter."

Fergys Thirsk is the revered general of the army of Morgravia, the sworn enemy of Briavel. The friendship between Fergys and his king, Magnus, is as close as anyone could ever dream. When Fergys is mortally
Sam K.
First of all, let me inform you all about the reason why I chose this novel. I know you shouldn't judge a book by its cover, but.. the snow-covered peaks, the ominous, looming fortress contrasting against the warm hue of orange..

I kinda fell in love with the cover. And the description on the back didn't actually sound so bad. So, I decided to give Myrren's Gift a go.

Aaanndd.. what a disappointment. Honestly, around halfway through the novel I was actually looking forward to finishing the novel a
Oct 06, 2016 Spuddie rated it did not like it
Shelves: dnf
It took me a week to read 80 pages of it (which means I even went beyond my 50-page rule)...but as much as I wanted to, I just could not get interested.
Oct 26, 2014 Greg rated it really liked it
I must start this review with the admission of not having read a classic fantasy tale for close to a decade. Obviously I don't claim, therefore, to be an expert judge of what makes a good fantasy novel, but with my plethora (make that a mountain) of recent books read and reviews written, I feel safe in saying that I know a good book when I read one. Myrren's Gift - Book One of The Quickening Trilogy - is one such book.

Within a scattering of chapters in this exciting, character driven tale of wit
Vanessa J
Jan 26, 2015 Vanessa J rated it it was amazing
I'd previously read Fiona McIntosh's other book, Royal Exile, and was quite disappointed in it. I really wasn't looking forward to reading her other work, but I'd promised myself I'd give her another chance, so I finally bit the bullet and bought a copy of Myrren's Gift.

And boy am I glad I did! I completely take back all the mean things I ever said about McIntosh.

The premise is that a witch bestows a gift upon the honourable but unfavoured companion to the Prince, and this gift will later come
Sep 17, 2013 Shayne rated it it was amazing
I first picked up this book in high school mainly just because I thought the cover looked interesting not even bothering to read the back of the book.

After I read the prolog I wasn't sure if I'd be interested in this book simply because it seemed that it would be a plain and normal story like most books. I decided to continue and after the first chapter I became enthralled with the book and couldn't put it down. There were allot of things I didn't agree with at first but then I had to remind my
Dec 18, 2014 Aelvana rated it really liked it
It all began the day Wyl's father died, and Wyl was summoned to the capital to begin training to take his place. Still grieving for his father, trying to live up to his father's hopes, Wyl finds himself distinctly at odds with Prince Celimus, whom everyone had hoped would be as good a friend as the King was to Wyl's father. Celimus, however, possesses none of his father's kindness or compassion; only too late does his father realize what a monster will inherit the throne. But what's done is ...more
May 16, 2014 Caitie rated it it was ok
I tried really hard to get through this book, but I just couldn't! To be fair, I thought it showed a lot of promise at the beginning. It definitely set the scene really well and I was actually really excited about reading it after only a couple of chapters. Unfortunately as soon as the action kicked off it went downhill quite rapidly. It fell into way too many fantasy cliches, the protagonist (and many of the supporting characters) were bland and the level of (sometimes sickening) cruelty in the ...more
Jan 11, 2013 Aaron rated it it was ok
Typical fantasy novel, but two things made it worse for me (warning, spoilers):

1. The main character, Wyl, is born not handsome. However, he is treacherously betrayed and killed, but wait! The witch he had mercy on that was burning at the stake had secretly given him a power that he switches bodies with whoever kills him, so now he has a perfect, handsome body. Whatever happened to seeing the beauty within a person? Awful message.

2. At the end of the book, in the heat of the moment Wyl tries to
May 26, 2011 Josh rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy, high-fantasy
Nifty first outing from a fairly new author. The plotting is tightly paced and keeps railing along at fairly high speeds. McIntosh's use of magic in the story is subtle and suitably rare, keeping it mysterious and somewhat confounding to the characters, which is to the good. Some of the characters are somewhat stock, but the main villain is almost gleefully evil and unredeemable which actually works very well here. the character's a sadist and megalomaniac, instead of just being misunderstood, ...more
Jun 12, 2014 Marjolein rated it really liked it

Read all my reviews on

This is the first book in the Quickening Trilogy.

I happened to read some other reviews before I started writing my own (which I rarely do), but honestly, I don't see why they are all so negative. I mean, this is far from the best book I've ever read but still I enjoyed reading it. (I've read tons of books I liked less).

The story itself was quite interesting, although some of the plotlines make the story itself a bit easy, e
Mar 25, 2012 Anne rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Le Dernier Souffle est un livre surprenant: il commence très calmement avec peu d'actions et presque pas de rebondissements, la première moitié du roman ce lit assez lentement, puis l'histoire devient peu à peu de plus en plus saccadée et imprévisible. Le suspens monte graduellement au fil des pages au point qu'on lit les 100 dernières d'une traite et qu'on voudrait commencer le second tome sans faire de pause. J'avais peur en lisant les premières pages que l'histoire soit un peu commune, ...more
Jul 11, 2013 Shmendrick rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This was passed on by a relative along with the other two books in the series. Whether I'll read them is a matter of doubt. The characters felt a bit cardboard cut-out-y and Koreldy was becoming the only character I liked when she killed him off. Valentyna managed to become the most irritating character and McIntosh needs to stop writing romance until she learns there are other ways of falling in love than at first sight. Also if that dog isn't the manwitch person he spent the last bit of the ...more
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Fiona writes best selling historical adventure-romance alongside the heroic-romantic, often brutal, fantasy she built her career upon. She lives in Australia but frequently roams the world meticulously researching the locations and gathering material for her historical novels that have international settings. Her books are published worldwide and in various languages.
Her most recent historical fi
More about Fiona McIntosh...

Other Books in the Series

The Quickening (3 books)
  • Blood and Memory (The Quickening, #2)
  • Bridge of Souls (The Quickening, #3)

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