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The Blood of Whisperers (The Vengeance Trilogy #1)

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3.95  ·  Rating details ·  92 Ratings  ·  41 Reviews
They call him the Usurper.

A man of common blood sits on the throne. At his command the last emperor was executed, but vengeance is coming...

Endymion is an Empath. He was born with the ability to feel another's emotions and reach inside their hearts for their deepest secrets. Often despised, he lives a nomadic existence, but when he finds himself imprisoned for sorcery and
...more
Paperback, 320 pages
Published September 28th 2013 by Cloudburst Books (first published September 26th 2013)
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Community Reviews

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Petrik
Jul 19, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: owned-physical
4.5/5 stars

A thoroughly engaging Asian-inspired fantasy and a super underrated debut.


I’m a man of habit; I usually always plan my TBR. But Devin Madson’s books shot up my TBR and ruined my plans immediately the moment I finished her award-winning novella, In Shadows We Fall, three weeks ago. From the moment I finished the novella, I knew I simply needed to read more set in this world and I’m damn pleased I followed that notion.

The Blood of Whisperers is Devin Madson’s debut and the first book in
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Dino-Jess ✮ The Book Eating Dinosaur ✮
This bad boy is on Netgalley right now! Go get it!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Original Review Feb 2014:

I put off reading this book for a long time, because I knew the trilogy wasn’t all released yet and I did not want to have to wait in between books. Yes. I am a product of the world we live in, and I love instant gratification ha!

But I caved and finally read the first instalment of The Vengeance Trilogy, The Blood Of Whisperers and I'm so glad I did. In all honestly, this book took
...more
Iryna (Book and Sword)
Jul 09, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ebooks
4/5 stars

Having previously read the novella by Devin Madson, In Shadows we Fall I immediately wanted more. More! So I just went ahead and got the 1st book of The Vengeance Trilogy - and here we are.

From the very first words of the novella I knew I loved the writing, so it was no surprise at just how much I enjoyed it in the full pledge novel as well.

Before I forget, I do recommend reading the novella prior to the trilogy - you don't have to, but trust me it will bring an extra dimension to ev
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Matthew
Dec 12, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I'm rarely surprised by fantasy fiction lately. After twenty five years of reading it I've noticed a lot of the books are the same. Male protagonists (usually), medieval European settings, and an ancient and powerful evil that will need destroying. Throw in a wise old wizard or two and you get my drift. So when I read something different I'm usually very surprised and delighted. And when that something draws you into a world so immersive and wonderful then it becomes an experience for the ages.

T
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Richard Nell
Nov 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
Overall/Tl;dr
Unique, well-written, East-Asian themed fantasy story of empire and revenge. It's Grimdark in that there's several (first-person) POV characters and really no good guy, but it's not so dark that anyone should be turned off. Easy recommend to really any fantasy fan.

Setting/World-building
Very Japanese/Chinese with several positions (like Minister of the Left) plucked right out of history. Not much else to say except that history geeks like me should find a lot to like, and for you nor
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C.T. Phipps
May 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy, grimdark
The Blood of Whisperers has one of the strongest openings I have read in a fantasy novel. Endymion is the ward of a priest but despises the profession because he is a, honestly self-admitted, selfish man who does not believe it is his place to help others. However, an attempt to make him a novice in a priesthood goes disastrously wrong as his heritage condemns him as does his talent for sorcery. The book continues on from there at a breakneck pace and zigs rather than zags despite having some co ...more
Liviu
Very compelling series with 3 pov's:

Endymion - empath - the novel's universe form of magicians who are thought to have been eradicated long ago but are under death at stake sentence if somehow still existing) of mysterious parentage

Darius - a young but much feared first minister of emperor Kin and in a way the person who connects all the rest

Hana - only surviving daughter of the last legitimate Laroth emperor assassinated some 15 years before with most of his family, murder blamed on his estrang
...more
Courtney
Aug 22, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Adult fans of: epic fantasies
Recommended to Courtney by: Booktasters
Emperor Kin, a man of common blood, claimed the the Crimson Throne by having the emperor before him executed at his command. The change of power has put the empire on the brink of war and there are many who are planning on taking vengeance on the usurper. Kin may have been made the youngest general in Kisian history, being a brilliant tactician and strong solder, but will he be able to hold his place at the throne for much longer?

The Blood of Whisperers by Devin Madson is an epic fantasy stor
...more
Brandon Wills
Jun 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
One thing that I can appreciate in a fantasy book is an author who jumps straight into the action. It has been a long time since I was gripped by a story this quickly and so strong (it even sidetracked me from finishing a Stephen King book). The characters were strong, the action was stronger, and Endymion’s adventures were so well written that I have to say Devin Madson has convinced me to buy the sequels. Good job, Devin!
Devin Madson
Dec 29, 2013 added it  ·  (Review from the author)
Shelves: my-books
The Blood of Whisperers is my baby!

I am not going to review it. I'm not going to rate it. That isn't my job. My job is to write books and leave the readers to decide what they think of them. What I am going to do is take the opportunity to say a few things about it and about myself.

I'm a self-publisher. Yes, I know, there's a stigma attached to that and it's a sucky problem, because people assume my work is shit. Admittedly it's a stigma that is largely well deserved, with self-publishing contai
...more
☙ percy ❧
Feb 16, 2018 rated it did not like it
i don't really have much to say about this, to be honest, except that i found it extremely dull and boring and possibly the most generic high fantasy i've read in a while. millions of tropes and nothing new or unexpected. i guess you might like this if you aren't really familiar with the high fantasy genre, but this was so Typical it wasn't enjoyable at all. the only non-typical thing was that the world was based off feudal japan rather than medieval europe, but to be honest half of the time you ...more
Daccari Buchelli
Jul 10, 2017 rated it really liked it
If you like action packed novels that transport you to another time, then this Fantasy novel may be for you. With emphasis placed upon honouring one’s family and avenging their deaths, we follow a few young warriors on their respective journeys.

Hana and Endymion are central characters, being just a couple of the true heirs to the throne of Kisia. Their stories move at a brisk pace, drawing you in with the promise of secrets yet to be unveiled.

I liked the way in which Kisia’s history was weaved
...more
S.B. Wright
Oct 11, 2013 rated it really liked it
Should a book review be just about the text between the covers?

Blood of Whisperers is the debut novel from Victorian author Devin Madson. It’s the first in a trilogy of novels set in the pseudo-Japanese fantasy world of The Imperial Expanse of Kisia. What drew me to this particular novel is the way in which the author sought to bring us this tale.

The Blood of Whisperers and the following books, The Gods of Vice( due December 2013) and The Grave at Storm’s End are already written and edited. I ho
...more
Marc Morris
Feb 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
So I have came to the end. Wishing for more hoping for more and seeking a Wi-Fi signal so I can get more.....
To be honest I was blew away with this book for many reasons but mostly the depth of character building and development which was entwined to the flow with such ease each main pov and more supportive cast all had there strengths and flaws but more importantly there secrets , as for the world we never explored enough for me to comment on but hopefully over rest of the trilogy we can taste
...more
Geoff
Sep 23, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I write. I like to think I write well, and I've had some great reviews so far.
This is a book I wish I had written.
The characters are vivid (even the secondary characters), and so full of life that I can't forget them.
The plot is strong, the pacing is perfect, and the style is brilliant.
I've read fantasy for most of my life, and it's rare to find a book this compelling.
Not a wasted word, and well-worth the read. Welcome to a world of honour and loss.
Can't wait for the next. An author to watch ver
...more
Mihir
Jan 09, 2014 rated it liked it

This book was bit of a difficult read for me because I kept on reading it in small bits and parts. I thought the story and settings were different and good but the characters and pace of story weren't quite up to the mark. I'll be reading the sequel to see where the author takes the story and characters.
Bethwyn (Butterfly Elephant Books)
Aurealis Awards 2013 nomination.
Tsana Dolichva
Oct 24, 2013 rated it really liked it
The Blood of Whisperers is Aussie author Devin Madson's début novel. I have to admit I was ever so slightly hesitant going into a book by a new author and a new publishing house, but I need not have been concerned. The Blood of Whisperers absolutely lives up to the quality I have come to appreciate from the Australian speculative fiction scene. (And I have since learnt that it's production was funded by a Pozible campaign, which is a risk for a début, but it has obviously paid off.)

In case you m
...more
Lydia Perversius
Apr 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Oh. My. God! This one is definitely getting on my top books for the '18 list! Even if it was published quite a long ago, it was read by yours truly recently and boy did I love it!

In the first book of what promises to be a spectacular trilogy, we see a story from three different perspectives. One from a young boy, one from an older girl, and one from an estimed noble with quite the dark secrets. All three of them are magnificent, full of suspense, political intrigue, and soooo much betrayal, it c
...more
Joy
Jul 06, 2018 rated it it was ok
This is a review of the trilogy as each book is rather short and a fast read.

Were this not set in a Feudal China-ish setting it would really be more syfy than fantasy. The basic plot is a civil war over who is the rightful ruler with the usual back stabbing and lies, murders and plots.

In the bloodline of one family is the ability of empathy but described as mind reading, emotional control, forced obedience, amoung other Powers. It leads to insanity or despotism, also a great deal of moral confli
...more
Kat
Sep 04, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: orcs-r-us
I really enjoyed the first book in the Vengeance Trilogy - c'mon, it's got vengeance and stuff.

The Blood of Whisperers follows three main narratives, that of Endymion, an empath, Hana, a fierce female fighter, and Darius, perhaps the most enigmatic and interesting of all the characters. After a bloody coup, they're all left fighting for the throne, and willing to give everything to get it.

What I really liked about was the way Madson balanced changing character conflict and motivation. It creat
...more
David
Jan 17, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really can't decide what I think about this book. Halfway through, I almost put it down - I just wasn't connecting with any of the characters, it just wasn't holding me...but...something kept me reading.

Honestly, this felt like a big prequel - something that's setting up big stuff in the next books, and you have to read it, but at the same time, it was slow (and this is coming from someone who reads and enjoys Tolstoy).

But here's the thing - the end REALLY changed things - the last quarter of
...more
Asma Abalkhail
Jan 26, 2018 rated it liked it
I’ll keep this review as spoiler-free as I can, since I really want people to try it out since I personally think that this book has a big chance of growing for the better.

As I initially stated, it’s more of 3.7 and my issues with this book were things I think I can overlook, like how the book started slow (you are thrown into things happening and events moving forward) yet I felt let behind (especially since I was experiencing my reading slump) but once you reach about halfway, you would be we
...more
Kerstin Vollbrecht
Aug 18, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This is a story about Endymion, an Empath who doesn't know who he really is, Hana, the heiress of the Crimson Throne and Katashi, her cousin, who also believes himself the rightful heir to the throne, which is currently occupied by Kin, the Usurper. The story narrates the journey of all the characters to achieve justice and revenge for themselves and their families. It is a beautiful story into the depths of what moves them and the changes they experience, especially in the case of Endymion and ...more
Cecilia
May 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this book. I liked 2/3 of the character profiles (I hated Hana so much). Darius was my favorite character. I loved how he acted and his though process through everything. The pacing was really good. There was either an action scene or a scene that revealed important character traits or crucial information. Overall, I would totally recommend this book and can't wait to read the next book!
Darryn
Aug 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
I received a copy of this book from Netgalley for an honest review.

I was pleasantly surprised picking this up as it was really good. Fantasy is usually a hit or miss with me and this was definitely a hit. The characters and dialogue are what make the book for me. The setting was interesting too, it wouldn't be my normal choice but it worked really well. Looking forward to book 2.
David Schembri
Nov 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing
What an adventure, following an intriguing group of characters through an empire seeping with plots of vengeance and the fight for the truth to ones identity. Beautifully written, compelling, and formed in a way that makes you not want to put the book down.
Highly recommended.
Pierce
Jun 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Ms. Madson, for me, started a little slow. Her world was built in subtle layers as this novel progressed. Brutality became more and more evident in a world where there was no clear hero or enemy. Your choices, as a reader, were left firmly in your hands, and in the end, you may be wrong. And in the end, she shone through as a truly epic author.
Kathryn at Book Ink Reivews
A copy of this review can also be found at Book Ink Reviews.

I so wanted to like this book. I really did. Especially with the crazy amount of high reviews. But I just...couldn't.

It has witty banter and a focus on world building, but it explodes with too many POVs and important characters. It causes the introduction to take over half the book, then makes the action at the end seem incredibly rushed.

I wasn't attached to any of the characters except for one--and you're not even really supposed to li
...more
Jason Franks
Feb 07, 2015 rated it really liked it
A sharp and refreshingly tight fantasy epic.

Blood of Whisperers follows its three damaged protagonists as they navigate the treacherous politics of a fading Empire that is as much Asian as it is European. A rebel captain, an orphan boy and a minister in the usurper's court--the setup is familiar but the execution is far from it.

There's plenty of action here, but the focus is definitely on the political manoeuvering as the scion of the deposed royal family seeks to win back his throne from the ge
...more
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40 followers
Devin Madson is the Aurealis Award-winning author of In Shadows We Fall. Having given up on reality she is now a dual-wielding rogue with a lot of points sunk into stealth and lock picking skills.

Anything but zen, Devin subsists on tea and chocolate and so much fried zucchini she ought to have turned into one by now.

If you’re after happy, fuzzy tales then you’ve come to the wrong place. Her fantas
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More about Devin Madson

Other books in the series

The Vengeance Trilogy (3 books)
  • The Gods of Vice (The Vengeance Trilogy, #2)
  • The Grave at Storm's End (The Vengeance Trilogy, #3)

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“There is nothing more disgraceful than a vain man."

"Better a diamond with a flaw than a pebble without.”
4 likes
“I do not think I was made to help people."

"And what were you made to do?"

"To wander.”
2 likes
More quotes…