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Bridge of Swords (Empire of Bones #1)
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Bridge of Swords

(Empire of Bones #1)

3.63  ·  Rating details ·  86 ratings  ·  20 reviews
Sendatsu is a hunted man. His people, even his own father, want him dead. Cast out of his home, he finds himself in a strange new land, desperate to find a way to return to his children.

Alone in the land of Vales, Sendatsu is forced to rely on his talents as a fighter to survive. His skills are welcomes by two fugitives - Huw and Rhiannon - who are hurrying to alert the pe
Paperback, 515 pages
Published August 17th 2012 by HarperCollinsPublishers (first published January 1st 2012)
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3.63  · 
Rating details
 ·  86 ratings  ·  20 reviews

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Jul 25, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
The beauty of this book is that it takes everything we know and love about fantastical literature and uses them in an innovative way. Everything about Bridge of Swords is brilliant – a gripping plot line peppered with well executed action sequences, interesting characters driven by realistic motivations, and a new world rich in culture, history and mystery. This has been my first foray into the works of Duncan Lay and I wonder how I overlooked his work for so long!

Sendatsu is the hero of this st
Mary Smith
Sep 10, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: library
When I started this book, I didn't realise that it was the first of a second trilogy by the author. However, I don't think this really mattered, as it seemed to be self-contained in this trilogy. Just by the way, does anyone write single-volume fantasy any more? That said, I quite enjoyed it, it's been quite a while since I read a proper fantasy and this one is definitely that. It tells the stories of Sendatsu, an elf who is attempting to discover why elves and humans have been separated; Huw, a ...more
Rose Nisbet
Jul 19, 2017 rated it really liked it
I liked the concept of a fusion between northern european and northern asian.
Dark Matter
Jan 12, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
This and more reviews, interviews etc are on Dark Matter Zine, an online magazine. This review was written by Rebecca Muir for Dark Matter Zine.

Bridge of Swords is the first book in a planned trilogy, Empire of Bones. Sendatsu is a high status elf, son of a member of the Council. His life is a life of privilege but also of sorrow. His life now revolves around his children. After discovering an ancient scroll, Sendatsu becomes entangled in a power struggle between t
Tsana Dolichva
Jul 25, 2012 rated it really liked it
Bridge of Swords is the first book in Duncan Lay's second trilogy, Empire of Bones. It is set about three hundred years after the Dragon Sword Histories (The Wounded Guardian, The Radiant Child and The Risen Queen), however you definitely need not have read the first series for this one to make sense. Given the large time gap, there are no common characters and in the interim the face of the world has changed significantly so that even those who have read the first series will find it relatively ...more
Jul 24, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Sendatsu is cast away from his home, sent to a new land in hope to finding the secret to why the elves locked themselves away from the humans centuries ago. As an elf who has lived 'behind the wall' in Dokuzen all his life he knows nothing of this strange world, only that he must return to his children at home soon. He is soon found by two fugitives Huw and Rhiannon who have their own agendas and motivations. Soon Sendatsu is a wildcard for freedom as lies unfurl and the truth is revealed.

The se
Kristopher Mason
Feb 20, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: my-bookshelf
I thoroughly enjoyed this book, unfortunately this novel suffered the same fate as almost every fantasy novel I've ever read, and that is that I start to find them tiresome halfway through. This is not a negative statement against the author, it's just something I find hard to avoid. It's more than likely to do with the amount of backstory, history and politics in fantasy novels; sometimes I find them too full on and have to put them down for a bit. But I digress...

I found Bridge of Swords to be
Jul 24, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: first-reads, fantasy
I received this book as the result of a FirstReads giveaway.

First off, my apologies for taking so long to review this book. While the book is thick, it was not the reason for my taking so long to read it. Life sometimes gets busy and sometimes it involves personal loss, such as what happened in this case.

I would be lying in saying I loved this book from the first page. In reality, it took me about 50 pages in until I started to enjoy it. ( My 10th grade teacher always told me to give a book 70 p
Aug 18, 2014 rated it liked it
Sometimes the name of the leading character in a novel can make all the difference to me –I mean how great is the name Katniss Everdeen? I had one of those ‘name moments’ while reading Bridge of Swords by Duncan Lay. The protagonists name is Sendatsu, his name will not leave my thoughts, I keep saying it over and over again, I try to sleep and his name pops into my mind Sendatsu, Sendatsu! Lay has obviously created a memorable character. Its not just names that makes this fantasy novel memorable ...more
Newtown Review of Books
Apr 13, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: reviewed, sff
The fascinating things in this book are, firstly, the characterisation. Lay excels at presenting the relationships which develop between these three characters, with warmth and insight. They are all charmingly flawed. Sendatsu has been bullied by his father into a sort of passive selfishness. Rhiannon has such a ludicrously inflated vision of the perfection of Elves that she can see nothing at all of the reality; she is slightly ridiculous although loveable – a beautiful singer and dancer who ha ...more
Sep 06, 2012 rated it really liked it
I bought it today and met the man himself! I've only read a short amount into it so far, but I'm finding the writing style to be descriptive and the plot to be an interesting one.

I generally don't read fantasy unless it is suggested by a friend whose taste in novels I approve of, and I also find elves to be a rather dull set of characters. Not in this case though. The idea that Sendatsu's people are not the elves they claim to be is pretty compelling.

There's a lot of potential and I don't see ho
Maurynne  Maxwell
Jun 29, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: giveaways, i-own-this
I am grateful to Harper Voyager for the goodreads giveaway copy I won. This is a high fantasy tale with elements of Welsh and Asian history/culture mixed in. It is definitely a coming-of-age tale that I would have enjoyed more in my teens-thirties, but as you can tell from my reading history, I have read a lot--and I have come of age. Character is what draws me in and while the world and the magic system are interesting, I wasn't fond of any of the characters. I will keep an eye on the author, t ...more
Michael Bailey
Apr 26, 2013 rated it it was ok
I really tried to like it, as I'm always chasing new authors....but it just didn't grab me. The setting seems derivative and a little contrived and the characters weren't holding my attention.

Still, I'll try again in a few months and see if I've been too harsh.
Mar 09, 2013 rated it liked it
Overall, an interesting plot. However, some of it so predictable it is a bit shameful. I would probably read the second book when it comes out, but if I never did, I don't know that I would be upset by it.
Dec 21, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Great book with interesting elf vs human dynamic.
Can't wait to see more of the elf-lands in the next one!
Sep 17, 2013 rated it it was amazing
First book I have read by this author. I enjoyed the twist on the old elf vs. Human tale.
Rainy Days
Sep 06, 2012 rated it it was ok
I can't stop reading it-help, must eat!!
Beks Giggle-Snort
Apr 20, 2014 rated it really liked it
So glad I bought the second book the same time as the first one! I need more.
Tracy Fisher
Thoughly enjoyed this.
Apr 18, 2014 rated it it was ok
Characters annoyed me to no end, not woeful but not amazing either.
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Oct 19, 2014
rated it it was amazing
Jun 09, 2014
Michaela Schmidt
rated it really liked it
Mar 31, 2014
rated it really liked it
Jul 12, 2014
Shane Charles
rated it it was ok
Mar 02, 2016
rated it did not like it
Jan 05, 2013
Katelyn Boulton
rated it it was amazing
Dec 07, 2013
rated it it was ok
Jan 20, 2014
rated it really liked it
Aug 07, 2018
rated it liked it
Aug 25, 2012
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Duncan Lay is a layout designer and headline writer at the Sunday Telegraph (Australia). He has always worked in journalism and has worked for a number of different newspapers and media outlets. He lives on the Central Coast of NSW with his wife and two young children.

Other books in the series

Empire of Bones (3 books)
  • Valley of Shields (Empire of Bones, #2)
  • Wall of Spears (Empire of Bones #3)