Robert's Reviews > Wintertide

Wintertide by Michael J. Sullivan
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Dec 09, 2010

it was amazing
Read from December 05 to 09, 2010

Wintertide is the fifth book in the Riyria Revelations. The first book is The Crown Conspiracy, the second is Avempartha, the third Nyphron Rising, the forth is The Emerald Storm, and the sixth and final book-Percepliquis has a tentative release sometime in April 2011.

Warning: This review contains spoilers for the previous book The Emerald Storm

Wintertide begins the next episode of The Riyria Revelations and continues the long thread plot in the land of Elan. With princess Arista and Degan Gaunt captured, Royce and Hadrian now have to find a way to rescue them. At the same time the Novron Empire is planning the wedding of Empress Modina to Ethelred the king of Warric. To celebrate this occasion, Arista and Gaunt are scheduled to be executed. Some subplots involved are how Hadrian will handle is new "assignment", Royce's search for an inhabitant of Melengar, a couple love interests, and others not to be mentions to remain spoiler free.

With as wonderful as the book The Emerald Storm was, I jumped right into this one and it was a quick read. I was engrossed from the beginning to the end. The pacing was perfect and keeps the reader engaged from beginning to end. I would have finished this one in two days if it wasn't for work and needing sleep. The characters are just as great as they have always been. They have such development and depth to bring out all range of emotions from the reader from rooting for the protagonists, to wishing the ability to spit on the villains. Everyone talks with their own unique voice making them easily distinguishable from the others. The story flows from one point to the next without a hitch. Everything seems to be right in its place and fits nicely.

Some criticisms:

1. I only have a couple criticisms and for those who have read or are along quite well in the series will understand what I mean. Mr. Sullivan is a master when it comes to writing intrigue and betrayals in his stories. Now, however, the betrayals are becoming a bit too predictable and always seem to be from someone you wouldn't expect, but when this formula continues, the unexpected now are expected and so there is no surprise to it.

2. I won't be able to delve into this one too much, but the ending, even though it is not technically a cliff-hanger, does happen abruptly. It does set things up well for the next and final book in the series, but I would have liked a little more to the way this one ended. It just didn't feel natural the way it ended.

Some Positives

1. The characters once again are a highlight to this book. They all have their own quirks and flaws. They are so lifelike and really reach out to the reader and the development is executed wonderfully.

2. Mr. Sullivan shows in this book that no only can he write a good adventure novel, but he can mingle in the courts with kings and queens. The way he handles all courtly manner was a marvel to read. Usually, I prefer to be on the path to adventure, but Mr. Sullivan knows how to bring to adventure to the aristocrats as well and really sets things along.

3. This book has more intrigue than actual fighting action, but it is perfectly set to keep the reader engaged with the action of, shall I say "battle of words", between the characters in the castle.

There are just so many things to love about this book and series. I am really looking forward to the final book in April and will be reading it forsaking all others when I get it. Like all the others in this series, this one is a stand alone novel that can be read at anytime in the series for the main plot of the book itself. As for the series, I would recommend reading from the beginning so you can enjoy the development of the characters and the larger plotline from one book to the next. I highly recommend this book for fans of fantasy. If you are looking into starting the fantasy genre, then give this series a try. It is an excellent gateway for those wanting to read fantasy novels.

Happy reading

-Dimndbangr
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