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A Shadow in Summer

(Long Price Quartet #1)

3.62  ·  Rating details ·  12,143 ratings  ·  870 reviews
The city-state of Saraykeht dominates the Summer Cities. Its wealth is beyond measure; its port is open to all the merchants of the world, and its ruler, the Khai Saraykeht, commands forces to rival the Gods. Commerce and trade fill the streets with a hundred languages, and the coffers of the wealthy with jewels and gold. Any desire, however exotic or base, can be satisfie ...more
Hardcover, First Edition, 331 pages
Published March 7th 2006 by Tor Books
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Jorden Just so any new readers that care are clear, there is both sex and swearing (including "fuck").…moreJust so any new readers that care are clear, there is both sex and swearing (including "fuck").(less)

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Average rating 3.62  · 
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 ·  12,143 ratings  ·  870 reviews

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Sep 14, 2017 rated it liked it
Recommended to Petrik by: Scott Hitchcock
(I read this in Shadow and Betrayal omnibus.)

3.5/5 Stars

A highly original debut and a good start to a quartet.

A Shadow in Summer is Daniel Abraham’s debut and the first book in the Long Price Quartet series. After finishing this book, I have to say that I’m deeply impressed by its originality. There is a lot of subtlety that goes into the book here, Abraham also has created a low fantasy series that’s influenced heavily by Eastern culture especially with the way he implemented poses in the chara
Niki Hawkes - The Obsessive Bookseller
Via Book Reviews by Niki Hawkes at www.nikihawkes.com

I will be the first one to admit that the overview sounds a little boring and convoluted. The first time I picked it up in a bookstore, I almost disregarded it right away and put it back on the shelf. The reading gods must have been looking out for me that day because for one reason or another I cracked it open to read the first page… And didn’t stop for thirty minutes. It was fascinating and engaging – starting out by introducing a complex co
Nov 17, 2011 rated it really liked it
When you've read fantasy for as long as I have you get tired of the fact that 90% of fantasy tales revolved around a dumb farm boy who is the missing heir to the kingdom or to long gone magical powers, he has a good heart but can't seem to get the girl, he has to leave home and help the world/nation/kingdom against some Dark Lord, who tends to be archetype and has some old mentor who gives him the sword/magical talisman to win and kick the beejesus out of the Dark Lord. Oh, and then he gets the ...more
Mayim de Vries
Feb 12, 2018 rated it really liked it
’And love is more important than justice,’ Seedless said.
‘Sometimes. Yes.’
Seedless smiled and nodded.
‘What a terrible thought,’ he said. ‘That love and injustice should be married.’

The main merit of A Shadow in Summer lies in how its Author bound ideas into words and then formed them into a language comprehensible for us, ordinary human beings. As to the lives these ideas led, the choices they made, the roads they had taken and the tales that could be told about it - that is altogether a differ
Aug 12, 2015 rated it liked it
I have definitely read much worse fantasy, or fiction, for that matter, and I see that subtlety and thoughtfulness is the name of this tune, but honestly, it was slow and not much happens.

It was, on the other hand, quite readable and the characters were very solid, even memorable as far as they go. The society, the empire, is also quite fleshed out and has a character all of its own. I have no complaints with any of that. Indeed, I think it's quite remarkable.

I don't even have a problem with the
Mar 12, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy, abraham
22/25 (88%) 4.5 stars.

A brilliant, slow start to the series, filled with clever intrigues and ambivalent characters who struggle through ethical dilemmas and hard decisions; blessed with a brilliant writing style and an original and fleshed-out setting. Abraham truly has created something unique here, and he has done it without needing a single action scene, for the depth of the intrigues and decisions his character must make suffice to carry this story.


The worldbuilding is chef's kiss, almost S
Feb 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
*** 4.25 ***

A buddy Read with the FBR Group! Because we love originality!

And this is exactly what this book offered - originality and plenty of it! I had no idea what to expect, but I was blown away by how different and complex the plot of this fascinating story offers. If you are expecting a traditional Fantasy with some political jostling in it, you have the wrong book. This is not at all in the realm of the Fantasy I have known up to now. Yes, we have a world of imagination, a city-state mad
Scott  Hitchcock
This was part of a group read and I liked it best of everybody reading the book. Which is odd because I think I'm the first one to complain when Fantasy or Sci-Fi books don't have any action and move slow. Others thought that of this book but it wasn't that way for me. There's just something about DA's writing style where both the characters and world are so descriptive. The emotions and interactions come off the page in HD where another author trying for the same is a black and white 9' built i ...more
Sep 03, 2017 rated it did not like it
Shelves: ficção, fantasia, dnf
DNF @ 20%. I think I gave this book a fair shot, 20% is quite a long way to read and still be completely bored by the characters, world and plot.

One thing that was really baffling and continually took me out of the book was the way the characters kept posing during conversations. It was soooo ridiculous, there wasn't a single dialogue that didn't involve at least ten different poses. They started as "a pose of greeting" or a "pose of farewell", which I can deal with, but soon the characters were
Allen Walker
Jul 13, 2020 rated it it was amazing
An underrated masterclass in quiet intrigue and character study.

My full review: https://youtu.be/J8TDSZE6Aps
Mar 28, 2011 rated it liked it
The review that hooked me: http://www.goodreads.com/review/show/...
The review that should've hooked me much earlier: http://www.goodreads.com/review/show/...

I don't think beginning this series with a marathon reading session while sick was the best approach, since fevers make me to skim faster and I missed some intricacies. Illness also makes me so lazy, such that I was unwilling to move even though I'd hunched down into a painful sitting/crouching/fetal position. Despite that (and despite the v
Dec 31, 2017 rated it really liked it
Recommended to Lema by: Kylie
Shelves: fantasy
[4.. maybe a 3.75 stars]

So if I need to describe this first book in 2 words I would say: Original and Clinical
Original, because let's be honest it's nothing like other fantasy novels I've read, the magic system is about capturing "ideas" into humanoid forms called "Andat" and control them to do the bidding of the castor, however these forms develop somewhat human traits and emotions as well, cue instant interesting and favorite character!

The world building is also very engaging with a lot of or
Sarah  Aubert
Nov 23, 2021 rated it really liked it
4.5 Stars.

A unique and compelling book that opens a fantasy series I am very much looking forward to continuing. A Shadow in Summer is an intimate, political, and character-driven fantasy novel. Abraham's fastidious worldbuilding and complex use of language brings to life a story that feels different from anything I've read before. I could tell, about five chapters in, that this is a series that is going to hurt - and one that is only going to improve with the telling. I am forcing myself to sl
Mar 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing
RTC after I finish the series.....It was a bit difficult in the beginning of the book but then it grabs you and keeps you up til 3am. Not that I did ;)
David Sven
Jul 27, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
I enjoyed this. Not bad at all for a debut novel.

It's a low magic fantasy. Political/industrial intrigue rather than knights and dragons.

I like the city of Saraykeht and the almost oriental feel to the main culture. The main language is comprised of poses and gestures that accompany words similar to the Adem hand gestures in The Wise Man's Fear.

The central concept of poet's capturing ideas and then imbuing them with volition creating an enslaved god (andats) was interesting. You would think this
Feb 11, 2018 added it
Truly impressive. So many novels in genre are less novels than they are the workings out of a plot—but that's not the case here. The characters breathe, and their moral and personal and emotional concerns are at least as vital as the clockwork of cause and effect. This actually made it a bit tricky for me to orient for the first couple chapters (after that phenomenal prologue). I kept waiting for the adventure hook, the mystery prompt, the grand doom foretold, and when one didn't come I felt thr ...more
4.0 to 4.5 stars. A very impressive debut novel. While very light on fantasy elements (think George R. R. Martin and the Song of Fire and Ice), the one major fantasy component is original and simply superb. That idea is that "poets" create and bind ideas made flesh and control them in the use of commerce and war. I was really impressed. This, along with a well developed world and a great story make this a strongly recommended book. ...more
Feb 14, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: buddy-read, fantasy
I really liked the writing and the concept of "poets" giving literal shape and form to ideas. The characterization was also pretty good for most of the characters. I wasn't emotionally satisfied with the ending but it wasn't enough to put me off from reading more in the series. ...more
Allison Hurd
Apr 19, 2020 rated it liked it
What an uneven read! I was not impressed with the beginning, but then the idea of the magic drew me in, and then the plots grabbed me, and then it got gross and boring and then I fell in love with one of the characters, and then the author threw that all away.

Weird, but not in a bad way I guess?

CONTENT WARNINGS: (a list of topics): (view spoiler)

Things that were enjoyable:

Jul 19, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Executive Summary: This pretty much seals it, I apparently really enjoy everything Mr. Abraham writes. This series likely won't be for everyone though.

Audio book: The sad truth is I consume far more books in audio these days than in text. The reviews of this series in audio has been pretty mixed towards negative, so I was leary to give it a shot.

I'll say that for me Neil Shah, was an alright narrator. He actually reads really well, and does a variety of voices. Some of them just annoyed me. Espe
Althea Ann
Aug 07, 2011 rated it really liked it
I picked up this book because of the laudatory blurbs from both George R.R. Martin and Connie Willis.
I know Abraham has co-written with Martin before; although this is his first solo novel, it doesn't read like a first effort in any way - it's definitely engaging, above-average fantasy.
The world is a somewhat familiar fantasy scenario with an Asian-ish flavor, but not so much so that it doesn't feel interesting and original. It's set in a kingdom whose power rests on the andat - powerful beings
Nov 06, 2021 rated it it was amazing
4.5. Fantastic character work and world-building. Full review to come soon.
Sep 17, 2013 rated it really liked it

I’ll admit it, I struggled with this work and what to think of it. The first two books in the quartet I really enjoyed. The second two books irritated the hell out of me.

Nevertheless, as much as I was irritated, I half suspect that that wa
✘✘ Sarah ✘✘ (former Nefarious Breeder of Murderous Crustaceans)
FREE for members of Tor.com’s eBook of the Month Club! You can sign up (also for free) and get the book here!

Jan 07, 2017 rated it did not like it
Shelves: fantasy
There are so many authors who fail to present a world which is unique and different from the hundreds of worlds that exist in fantasy. They Fail.

Daniel Abraham succeeds to make his world different. Unfortunately, different does not always mean better.

Plot Well, there isn't any. I am greatly surprised how this became a quartet when there was no story to be told beyond ten pages in the first book. The issue I had with this book is that it never pursues any concept faithfully. It starts off as a
Apr 02, 2010 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
So disappointed, again. I picked up this book because my heroes Connie Willis and George R. R. Martin, hands down my two favorite scifi/fantasists writing today, had been quoted as saying generous things about this series. Obviously the lesson here is to never trust blurbs, ever, even if you think the people writing them have bigger brains than you. I mean, it started out well enough. The first scene with Maati and the andat was hair-raising in its eeriness, and I liked the idea of poetry transc ...more
Sep 19, 2019 rated it liked it
After sitting and thinking about this I am going with this start rating because I do not think I was in the right head space for an Epic Fantasy like this. By that I mean, this first novel is devoid of any mythical creatures and action like non. This was a very political, character driven story and had I known that going in I think that would have helped a little bit. Now don't get me wrong this novel was written extremely well and executed just as well. Daniel Abraham has created a very unique ...more
Mar 01, 2008 rated it liked it
Recommended to Mary by: review by GRR Martin
thoughts about reading sci fi/ fantasy:
I think of fantasy books in three tiers:

Tier 1: These are complete successes. I believe the world completely, the plots zoom along and the I care about the characters as if they were friends. Examples are Tolkien, the Fire and Ice series by George R R Martin, The Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon, and Harry Potter.

Tier 2: I can't quite believe in the world, but the plot and characters are good enough to be entertaining.

Tier 3: Don't believe it and don't ca
Jordan Stephens
Jan 02, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Dec 20, 2016 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Epic fantasy fans looking for a new take on the genre
Completing a novel, launching it out into the world, must be a daunting thing. It's no surprise that authors often take it easy on themselves the first few times, finding their feet before they launch into the deep end.
Which is to say that most debut novelists do not kick off their epic fantasy tetralogy with a glacially slow, intense but distant, morally complicated multiple-point-of-view novel about an abortion, set in a non-European culture whose oddities make themselves felt in every single
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Daniel James Abraham, pen names M.L.N. Hanover and James S.A. Corey, is an American novelist, comic book writer, screenwriter, and television producer. He is best known as the author of The Long Price Quartet and The Dagger and the Coin fantasy series, and with Ty Franck, as the co-author of The Expanse series of science fiction novels, written under the joint pseudonym James S.A. Co ...more

Other books in the series

Long Price Quartet (4 books)
  • A Betrayal in Winter (Long Price Quartet, #2)
  • An Autumn War (Long Price Quartet, #3)
  • The Price of Spring (Long Price Quartet, #4)

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