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The Scrivener's Tale

3.64  ·  Rating details ·  464 ratings  ·  59 reviews
An action-packed standalone adventure moving from present-day Paris to medieval Morgravia, the world of Fiona McIntosh's bestselling QUICKENING series.

In the bookshops and cafes of present-day Paris, ex-psychologist Gabe Figaret is trying to put his shattered life back together. When another doctor, Reynard, asks him to help with a delusional female patient, Gabe is reluct
Paperback, 499 pages
Published November 1st 2012 by Voyager - AU (first published October 1st 2012)
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3.64  · 
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 ·  464 ratings  ·  59 reviews

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Shelleyrae at Book'd Out

Reader's familiar with Fiona McIntosh's popular fantasy trilogy The Quickening will be thrilled with her latest release, a stand alone novel that is set in the same imaginative landscape. Though best known for her fantasy series I have only read McIntosh's stand alone historical fiction novel The Lavender Keeper and recently purchased the first two books of her crime fiction series. I am pleased I took a chance on The Scrivener's Tale as I found it to be a fabulous read. Moving from Paris, Franc
Jan 05, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: library-books
I can't really say that I am overly thrilled to have chosen this book for my first book of 2013. Why am I not happy? Well... it was boring!

I just cannot put to words the feeling of the big giant MEH that kept flooding my mind while reading. To be honest, I wasn't really expecting much. I picked this up on a spontaneous trip to my local library, and as usual, the library wasn't supporting any book that I really wanted to read anytime soon, so I did the next best thing and picked up a book that I
Shahad Almutahhar
Feb 02, 2017 rated it really liked it
This book has left me this close to actually crying and that's something since I don't cry.

The book caught my interest easily at the beginning and it was steady paced, bringing the right things at right times and taking them away to allow the reader to miss those characters and scenes and read more to meet them.

Then close to the middle, or a bit before the middle, the book started to lose my interest and get quite confusing at many times. It was too slow and there was nothing exciting happenin
Jan 30, 2014 rated it really liked it
A new fan...
I've always liked Fiona McIntosh's lush and inviting book covers, but I've never managed to get past flicking through the books and reading a few a passages - my impression was the books seemed a bit too much aligned with some 'fantasy genre' for my preferences, that is, densely written with action a little slow, graphically descriptive torture and other nasty scenes and quite poor portrayals of women; many people love her books so I'm sure she didn't miss me. (I do enjoy quite a lot
Apr 11, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A bit more towards the tell end of the show/tell spectrum than is ideal, and at times a little dramatic (in a whimsical way), this light-hearted (despite "dark" subject matter it never feels very heavy) fantasy book is nonetheless an entertaining read. I enjoyed it!

Only found out after finishing it that apparently there is another book by the same author set in the same world that was written earlier - "The Quickening". Although this book is a follow-up, it reads absolutey fine as a standalone.
May 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I don't read epic fantasy often anymore, because it's all pretty much cookie-cutter. I know what's going to happen and I can predict even the path the story will take. But every so often a book comes along that catches me by surprise. The Scrivener's Tale is one such book. I discovered it randomly, and as it's the first book by McIntosh that I've read, I had no idea it was set in a world she had already created. In fact, when I started the book, I thought it was going to be a modern-day fantasy, ...more
Shala Howell
Jan 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This was a fabulous winter read. Apparently this is set in the same world as the Quickening series, which I haven’t read. It works well as a stand alone story, though.

I will definitely read more Fiona McIntosh. She does a good job of blending familiar fantasy tropes with original storytelling to keep readers looking for a good story both comfortable and engaged.
Crymsyn Hart
Jan 08, 2019 rated it liked it
It was a decent enough book, but not one of my favorites. Not because it was a stand alone tied into a series. I don't know, just didn't hit all the right bells with me.
Jan 08, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I think I'd like it better had I read the Quickening series first. Now I'm intrigued by the world and the other characters so may need to look into it.
Monique Mulligan
Dec 18, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I tend not to read a lot of fantasy books, but after reading The Lavender Keeper and being captivated by Fiona McIntosh's superb storytelling, I had to give The Scrivener's Tale a go. I'm glad I did - I was soon transported from present-day Paris into medieval Morgravia and swept along with a fantastical adventure. Those familiar with McIntosh's writing will recall Morgravia from The Quickening series; however, this novel is not a continuation of that series but a stand alone.

Following the loss
I'm not sure what it is with getting a third of the way through a book and giving up these days (see: Code Name Verity, but apparently I just don't have the patience for books that don't grab my attention and hold it. This one isn't all bad, but the way characters explain exactly what is going on all of the time became tedious after a while. Characters had the same type of dialogue as well, making the bits with conversations between characters read somewhat like a one-man play. I'd like to say I ...more
In 2005, American audiences were introduced to Fiona McIntosh with her novel, MYRREN'S GIFT, the opening volume of a trilogy that was already causing a stir in her home country of Australia. Over the course of three books, McIntosh carried readers on a journey through the magical and brutal world of Morgravia, displaying her skill at storytelling and worldbuilding on a smaller stage.

Over the course of the past seven years, she has continued to hone her craft, branching out with more fantasy, hea
Aug 16, 2013 rated it it was ok
I remember reading The Quickening series back when I was in high school. I loved it. The intrigue, the tightly woven plot, but most of all the agonising ordeal these now beloved characters went through had me frantically turning pages well into the early hours of the morning. I thought The Scrivenger's Tale, again on Morgravian soil, would reignite my love for this wonderfully rich world McIntosh had created.

I was wrong. God, how I was wrong.

It's obvious Fiona McIntosh loves Morgravia. Me? Well,

Book synopsis:
Anni (Tea in the Treetops)
The Scrivener’s Tale is a return to the world Fiona McIntosh first wrote about in her Quickening series, set several hundred years later. When I first heard about this book and realised it was a stand-alone story in a previously created world, I was assured that I didn’t need to read the previous series to know what was going on.

This is true to a certain extent – there is quite a lot of story set-up at the start to help the reader to understand the history of Morgravia and the magic of Myrren an
Agent Annie
Oct 31, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: agent-annie
Pssst… The Scrivener’s Tale by Fiona McIntosh is an exciting story in a world far away. What hooked me though, was that the book description started with “It’s an ordinary day in Paris” and then all went afoul. I thought this story that took place in the modern day world. It does not. It’s set in a world called Morgravia, which is fine; I was just a bit disappointed at the beginning because I thought I was getting a contemporary tale. However, once I got used to being in Morgravia, I was sucked ...more
Feb 21, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2017-challege
A one-volume fantasy based lightly on a previous trilogy. Well-written, as is Ms. McIntosh's way, and keeping the interest of the reader throughout. Guessing on the outcome or the fates of the characters is fun and even if you find out you're wrong, you enjoyed the trip. I could wish for a further story of some of the people, but I won't spoil the ending for another reader.
Oct 23, 2012 rated it it was ok
Shelves: cannot-finish
So far, this book has been kind of disappointing. I've read a couple of Fiona McIntosh's other fantasy series and loved them. I always recommend them to friends and family who are looking for a new fantasy series...but The Scrivener's Tale...not sure I would recommend this at all. I'm on chapter 8 and I'm really struggling. I keep thinking, "one more chapter and it will surely get better" but it just hasn't. If anything, it's getting weirder.

There's been a few things that are annoying me. First
Nov 03, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy
Morgravia and it's ruler, Queen Florentyna, are in peril. A demon, Cyricus, has been entrapped in the Void for many centuries. But demons are cunning and one fueled by revenge can never be considered defeated while life remains.

Now Cyricus has broken free of the Void and he is planning to destroy all those who sent him there. That includes all of the kingdom Morgravia, it's ruler, and all its allies. Who can stand against such a powerful foe?

Those that sent Cyricus into the void have always kn
Lydia Presley
Jan 03, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2013, fantasy, fiction
I admit, I was extremely hopeful picking up The Scrivener's Tale by Fiona McIntosh. After a series of historical and contemporary novels I was more than ready to dive into a fantasy world, and the idea of a single volume, set in a world that was already created, appealed to me. I was a bit worried that I wouldn't be able to fully discover that world... but that fear was not the one I should have been concerned about.

The good was that McIntosh knows her fantasy world, Morgravia, very very well. I
Laura Sgro
Feb 05, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This book was an unexpected treat. I found it for $5 at a discount bookstore and bought it because the premise was interesting - though I will say that the back cover summary doesn't really do this book justice - and I'm so glad that I did.

I've never read any of the author's other books, and I'm pretty new to the fantasy genre as well (excepting Harry Potter), but this was a gorgeously inventive introduction to both. Overall, I found the book complex enough to keep me engaged, and the 500 pages
Lucie Paris
Jan 08, 2013 rated it it was ok
I'm a fantasy fan so it is with great pleasure that I started this novel. Excited by the first Parisian chapters (given that I am living in this city) and by the sessions with the therapist, rather well fed, the beginning whetted my curiosity. Then, I was also intrigued by Cassien whose past and how it has grown up enhance the reader to expect of many surprises.
But very soon, my eagerness was deflated.

Even before entering Morgravia's gates with Gabe, I started to let it go. I even stopped my re
Bronwyn Mcloughlin
Jan 22, 2014 rated it liked it
I'm not much of a fantasy reader, but something about this one when it came through sounded interesting and so I thought I would give it a go. Well enough written, and I read it through to the end, so it did enough to keep me engaged with the plot and characters. Not startling, and a bit disjointed sometimes. The device of starting with a story thread set in contemporary Paris was unusual, and although it allowed the development of the 3rd member of the triad, and also allowed for those readers ...more
Mar 18, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Fantasy novels are not books I read (very often). When however I saw this book in my bookstore I was intrigued by the cover and that it said it would be a story from mondern day Paris to a medieval land. I love books with a story that keeps forward and backwards in time.

When I started reading I had to pay good attention to what I was reading, so much information at once. But then ... I could not put the book away! It is such a good written book, with lots of emotion, danger and suspense. You tot
Feb 20, 2015 rated it liked it
The Scrivener's Tale is a stand alone book that takes place in the fantasy realm developed in a previous trilogy by Fiona McIntosh. This was my first introduction to this realm and I found it curiously flat. There is no doubt that the writer has worked on her craft and knows how to sustain a lengthy plot, which is no small feat, and there is nothing glaringly bad about the novel except that it is a bit dull. The dialogue is often over explanatory as though the writer is trying to convince the re ...more
Apr 20, 2014 rated it it was ok
This fantasy tale lost my attention after Gabriel left Paris. The beginning of the story showed promise, then it deteriorated quickly. I found the storyline boring and muddled (I had not previously read any of the Morgravia series, maybe this is the reason). I thought the characters were contrived. Even the main female character, Florentyna, did not elicit any sympathy, as she acted like a spoilt teenager, one minute sullen and arrogant, then quaking at the knees after meeting Tamas her childhoo ...more
Feb 03, 2013 rated it liked it
A strange book because I couldn't make up my mind for a long time if I liked it, I kept putting it down. Not a good sign for me as I like to finish a book once I have started.

It really seemed like 2 authors had woven the story together, some parts were beautifully written, characters believable, plot exciting and then suddenly it was as if someone else less able had taken over for a while and had written the next part of the book.

Not sure I would read it again. Maybe I should have read the ear
Gemma Bartlett
Sep 21, 2014 rated it liked it
I'll be honest, I couldn't finish this book. It has three stars rather then two on the chance that the story improves later in the novel.
Frankly I found the characters very hard to relate to, I flat out disliked Angelina. The story was boring and the practice of just verbally dumping Gabe's "tragic background" into a lengthy monologue right at the start was lazy.
The concept of the novel was promising and I have heard Fiona McIntosh is a brilliant fantasy writer so perhaps it is a shame that thi
Caitlin Kinsella
I have mixed feelings about Fiona McIntosh. I really liked the Myrren's gift trilogy but got a bit bored (if I'm honest) in Odalisque. However this standalone novel, which follows The Myrren's Gift story, was a thoroughly enjoyable, quick read. It helps if you remember vaguely what happened in the previous books, but you can get by without it. The characters are very likeable, but the story was a little bit of a condensed re-hash of the previous trilogy. So don't expect any mind-blowing or cleve ...more
Jan 10, 2013 rated it it was amazing
AMAZING!! I was looking at the map of the lands and had a niggling thought in the back of my head that things look rather familiar but could not figure it out until I read the first page and was very excited Fiona was coming back to the land and of course the ever prominent Lyanna!! It has been a few years since I had read 'The Quickening' series but my mind was still able to recall the amazing landscape of those books. This book was brilliant, I really cannot say enough about it. Cannot wait fo ...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