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Shadow and Betrayal (Long Price Quartet #1-2)

3.81 of 5 stars 3.81  ·  rating details  ·  557 ratings  ·  54 reviews
In a remote mountain academy, the politically expendable younger sons of the Great Houses study for an extraordinary task. Most will fail, some will die, but the reward for the dedicated few is great: mastery of the andat, and the rank of Poet. Thanks to these men - part sorcerers, part scholars - the great city-states of the Khaiem enjoy wealth and power beyond measure, a ...more
Paperback, 593 pages
Published January 1st 2010 by Orbit (first published October 1st 2007)
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First Second Books
Look, it’s an epic fantasy series that’s not set in a feudal Europe analogue! And it’s got a relatively Campbellian hero-cycle plot that’s not based on the premise, ‘there is great evil in the land, I must fight it, though I am small/weak/young/reluctant/unprepared.’


The thing I’m finding most fascinating about this world are the poets – and therefore the use of language. Abraham creates a magical system that’s based on people being able to accurately describe forces of nature – and therefo
(Re-posted from

There was this fantasy series I loved like a mad thing when I was about fourteen or so, but I won’t say which one as I don’t want to spoil anyone. There was one character in particular I was very fond of, a dashing young prince. The trilogy, among other things, followed Prince Dashing on various adventures until he saves the land and his lady love and lives happily every after.

But the author did not stop with just this trilogy, he went on to wri
(Repost from
I recently mentioned that the best SFF doesn't leave its world unchanged. For me, a story that ends 'same-old' falls far below one which explores the plethora of changes - not just 'new-king-on-the-throne' change (and he'd better not have been a farmboy...), but social change. Societal change. Magical change. Technological change. Fantasy in the Industrial Revolution? All for it.

...And at its heart, the Long Price Quartet is uniquely about ch
Two books in this, and they really are two almost completely different stories, including some of the same characters in the second book, a dozen or so years later and at the other end of the country. There are some themes that carry over, some that counterpoint.

First, let me talk the world and the rich, glorious detail of it that seeps through in the crack of every lovely sentence Abraham crafts. Because I'd read a hundred and more pages of this without any clear driving sense of the story, but
A Shadow in Summer (book 1):

A Betrayal in Winter (book 2):

I’m more a fan of intricate, character-driven fantasy than sensational sword-and-sorcery quests; I’d choose Robin Hobb over David Gemmell in a trice. So when I was told that – despite the moody warrior on the front cover – Daniel Abraham’s The Long Price belonged more to the former camp than the latter, I was intrigued.

I was right to be. Having just finished
The first two books in a four part saga.

This is an unusual but interesting and well written saga set in a time and place that is not of this Earth (I don’t think). The main characters (Maati and Otah) lives are bonded together but go their separate ways while intersecting at numerous points as they both grow and learn and get caught up in a devious plot to topple the leader of a city.

The most bizarre and original and interesting element to these stories are the manifestations of ideas into physi
This book (or rather, [i]A Shadow in Summer[/i], as I never got around to [i]A Betrayal in Winter[/i]) never really took off for me. I made myself read through the first 192 pages, and then I was through. I put it down when ‘life’ got in the way, and I felt no inclination whatsoever to pick it pack up and start reading again. That’s not to say it’s a bad book, but I just could not get into it. I appreciate what Abraham is trying to do by creating a Japanese-like culture (where the ubiquitous ‘po ...more
Joshua Perry
Jun 04, 2014 Joshua Perry rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Fantasy lovers big and small - only if you're prepared for a quartet!
Very good, 4/5 stars.

From the very start of the first book in this omnibus (A Shadow In Summer) Daniel Abraham really set the scene for a great book. The imagery in the first few chapters is just phenomenal, I could really see the school in my mind's eye, I felt as if I was able to walk the streets of Saraykeht, everything was described very well without being over the top.

The characters were believable. Not only that, but I found myself getting very attached to some, and forming a deep hatred
I found this a little hard to get to grips with at first, because it's a fantasy story that somewhat defies expectations. There's probably certain themes that you associate with 'fantasy' and ... poetry probably isn't one of them.

The core concept is that mystical power comes from 'Andat' - essentially personified concepts which are defined and controlled by Poets. In that an Andat is harnessed and controlled by being described by a Poet - at which point that Poet becomes someone of very notable
Melissa Pence
What sort of world would one inhabit, if, abstract thought and desires could be bound into a creature? What sort of creature would you birth with a flawed creator? In A Shadow of Summer, Daniel tackles a system of magic that I have not entirely seen before and--will probably never forget.

An idea that lives and is bound to its creator, where its purpose is to serve and continually look for means to break that servitude. It brings power...and it brings danger.

In the country of Saraykeht, the cap
A shadow in summer:

Con questo libro (in realtà la prima parte di uno dei due volumi che raccolgono la quadrilogia) comincio la lettura della saga di Daniel Abraham, The long price quartet.
Una saga fortemente sponsorizzata da Tintaglia (che, in effetti, mi ha passato i due tomi lo scorso anno per farmela leggere, da brava spacciatrice di testi).

Devo ammettere però che, alla fine, questo primo libro è stato abbastanza deludente.

La scrittura dell’autore è ottima, e tiene il lettore incollato alle p
Above average fantasy much keener on mannerpunk and emotion than it is on the copious swinging of swords. Which makes a nice change for me.

I have a few niggling points regarding the beginning of the first book. The mountain academy in particular did seem to be something of an over-engineered solution for selecting poet-adepts and surely it could at least be built somewhere closer to the Dai-kvo? He's described as the busiest man in the world later in the book and I'm sure if I was even half as i
Nov 09, 2011 Ken rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: fantasy
A Shadow in Summer was my third book club read with Fantasy Faction, the first book in The Long Price Quartet by Daniel Abraham. Since I purchased the omnibus edition with the first two books, this post will be a review of both A Shadow in Summer and A Betrayal in Winter.

The thing I love the most in A Shadow in Summer is the amount of world building and the attention to detail. The Khaiem has a very strong Oriental feel. First, the school that Otah Machi attends reminds me very much of the Shaol
Elegant is how I would and do describe this series.
I don’t think any one thing in particular stands out as being particularly good, or bad, but overall I have the feeling of having read a book carefully crafted by a master. The plots flow naturally, and realistically. The prose is appropriate to the situation.
I can see why people have problems getting into “Summer”, however, it is an essential part of the quartet. The events that occur here echo throughout the rest of the books with significant
The "Long Price Quartet", begining with these two novels, is a dark, gritty and heart-wrenching fantasy novel that explores the depths of human emotion. It contains many of the usual fantasy tropes, such as a splendidly unique magic system, vast landscapes, political intrigue and battles between nations. But it is so much more than this; it is a coming of age story that spans the life of two young boys, as they experience love, death, murder, tragedy, betrayal, abandonment and ultimately fear of ...more
After years of reading recommendations about The Long Price Quartet by Daniel Abraham and waiting to purchase all four volumes, I finally delved into the world Abraham created and I found myself pretty impressed. This omnibus edition featured the first two volumes of the Quartet, A Shadow in Summer and A Betrayal of Winter, which not only introduce the world but are separated in time from one another to be both independent and interdependent on one another.

A Shadow in Summer: Otah Machi turns aw
Gina Turner
I sit here with tears streaming down my cheeks, having just finished the last book in The Long Price Quartet, and I don't know what to write here except that I can't remember ever reading a story so beautiful. It took my breath away. I started this series over a month ago, and while it has been a long read, never has any story been more worth it. Daniel Abraham writes with a beauty, grace, talent, and real love for the story and the characters he creates that very few authors can match. Although ...more
Jessica Strider
Pros: lots of intrigue, complex characters, fantastic world building

Cons: characters make disappointing choices

Otah Machi, sixth son of the Khai Machi, gives up his chance to become a poet and leaves the training school he was sent to without a brand, in order to make his own way in life. Years later, one of Otah's pupils, Maati, comes to Saraykeht to apprentice with its poet. Poets keep Andat, spirits made flesh who perform particular tasks. Saraykeht's Andat, Seedless, helps with the cotton tr
First of all, I want to say how much I LOVED the setting, which is a sort of East Asian (perhaps Chinese?) influenced set of cities whose power comes from the ability of their poets to bind thoughts to flesh. The first novel in this omnibus edition (A Shadow in Summer) was mostly interesting for the intrigue and the setting but I thought the second, A Betrayal in Winter, really increased the stakes and for me, the character of Idaan Machi in the second novel was what made me absolutely love it. ...more
Wow. This SF Book Club edition contains the first two books of The Long Price Quartet. A Shadow in Summer and A Betrayal in Winter. Interesting theme, well written, grabbed my attention from the prologue. The characters are well written and complex. The politics is Byzantine on a level typical of Abraham's fellow New Mexican George R.R. Martin. Fortunately, the cast of characters is more manageable than Fire and Ice. Martin in fact recommended reading these books to those who are getting tired o ...more
A beautifully constructed world complimented by a brutal and uncompromising story of the politics of great houses and simple hearts, written with such style that it will haunt the time you spend away from it. Abraham is a master of "blue-collar" fantasy, making his mere mortals more compelling than any epic tale.
Not as good as the work he has done with Ty Frank on the Expanse series, but good stories within a very interesting world. This book I couldn't put down, but I think book two drags on a bit and that the epilogue wasn't needed. I'll be interested to see what he does next.
Martin Glen
I bought this series before Daniel Abraham's current saga, The Dagger and the Coin series, but found it less accessible. It's a fairly 'writerly' work, in that it's a fantasy book without all the bells and whistles that one usually finds in modern fantasy series. That's fine, but for this kind of work I find myself posing a simple question - does it need to be set in a fantasy world? Or could it be historical fiction? This series, so far, does not tick the box. Its magic is not mysterious and im ...more
Enjoyed this edition which is in fact the first two books in a quartet. First time I have read anything by this author and I will be getting the next two books and looking for other titles by him as they come out.

There aren't any orcs, elves or dragons and very little magic, but there is a good storyline and characters that pull you in. The setting as an eastern feel rather than the usual western dark ages you find in so many fantasy novels.

The main themes seem to be the roles assigned by societ
A Shadow in Summer and A Betrayal in Winter were fascinating installments to Daniel Abraham's The Long Price quartet. The world in which the characters inhabit is a fascinating one and the characters themselves are unique with their own burdens and goals. I personally enjoyed A Betrayal in Winter more than the first novel and I look forward to seeing how everything plays out in the second omnibus.

My complete review of the novel was originally posted at http://www.caffeinated
poor, poor attempt at storytelling. no matter how cool your fantasy world is you still have to tell at least a halfway decent story!
Thoughtful and rather unusual fantasy - strong on character and plot, not action or world-building. The central concept that makes this world original is not entirely convincing, but if that is taken as given, the rest of the plot follows logically enough. Characters do show development through the two novels, and there are some quite deep themes that shine through. Well worth the read, more so than most fantasy novels. Also, each novel is a modest size, not a tome - a welcome development in thi ...more
Chris Conley
It's fortunate that the volume I obtained actually contained the first two books in this series. Had that not been the case, I doubt I'd have bothered with the second book. The first part was slow. While it might have been deep, at times, it glossed over pretty much every bit of possible action. The second book does doesn't do that so much, and the story really does pick up and get quite interesting, which is why I can say it's fortunate that I all but had to read the first two books.
Two in one. Totally different to the norm; more Eastern than any other I can think of. Poses that add to language. Plus the poets and andats. Raced through the second book in just over a day.
Writing style quite interesting. The Prologue was intriguing. But after that it descended into a level of complexity that I'm not happy with. It's on my bookshelf and someday when I'm hard up for reading material I'm sure I'll finish it, someday.

(and it's not that I don't appreciate a circuitous plot, but if an author must try his hand at political intrigue and internal angst, he should ensure the pacing is swift and that things actually happen)
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Daniel Abraham is an American science fiction / fantasy author who lives in Albuquerque, New Mexico. He is a graduate of Clarion West, and sometimes collaborates with George R. R. Martin, another New Mexico resident.

His short stories have appeared in numerous publications and anthologies. His novelette Flat Diane was nominated for the Nebula Award. His novelette The Cambist and Lord Iron: a Fairyt
More about Daniel Abraham...
A Game of Thrones: The Graphic Novel, Vol. 1 The Dragon's Path (The Dagger and the Coin, #1) A Game of Thrones: Comic Book, Issue 1 A Game of Thrones: Comic Book, Issue 2 A Shadow in Summer (Long Price Quartet, #1)

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