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The Last Quarrel: Episode 1

(The Arbalester Trilogy #1.1)

3.21  ·  Rating details ·  52 ratings  ·  31 reviews
Gaelland is a nation gripped by fear.

In the country, fishing boats return with their crews mysteriously vanished, while farms are left empty, their owners gone into the night, meals still on the table. In the cities, children disappear from the streets or even out of their own beds. The King tells his people that it is the work of selkies – mythical creatures who can turn
ebook, 150 pages
Published January 22nd 2015 by Momentum Books (Pan Macmillan)
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Showing 1-30
3.21  · 
Rating details
 ·  52 ratings  ·  31 reviews

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Althea Ann
Apr 18, 2015 rated it liked it
This first 'episode' sets the stage for what looks to be shaping up to be a very standard but quite entertaining fantasy novel.

First, we're introduced to Fallon. A staff-wielding local law-enforcer, he's always hungered for the change to be a hero. However, as a middle-aged family man with a son in ill-health and a wife suffering from depression and anxiety, he seems unlikely to get his chance. However, when the Duke's ship runs aground outside his village, mysteriously abandoned, he sees a chan
Jun 04, 2015 rated it liked it
So far nothing novel or new to the fantasy genre, but an interesting set up as far as the events go.

The characters are a bit bland, and I hope that the author takes the time to develop them a bit more.
Jan 08, 2015 rated it liked it
So where do I begin? Well, I didn't love this book, but I didn't hate it either. In all fairness I thought it was a promising start to a five part book. It had many positives... an intriguing premise and mystery... some interesting characters (some of them were just plain cliched though)... and a fascinating world that was richly described in this episode. Fallon was a good protagonist, and I really enjoyed how the story motored along at a reasonable pace. However, there were some negatives for ...more
Jan 20, 2015 rated it it was ok

Publisher: Momentum

Publishing Date: January 2015

ISBN: 9781760082512

Genre: Fantasy

Rating: 1.8/5

Publisher Description: In the country, fishing boats return with their crews mysteriously vanished, while farms are left empty, their owners gone into the night, meals still on the table. In the cities, children disappear from the streets or even out of their own beds. Fallon is a man who has always dreamed of being a hero. When an empty ship sails into their vil

Fallon : I love my family, but I want to fight ! I need to fight!
Cavan : I need to save my people. I have to fight!

People disappear. Children are abducted and those who do it leave no trace. Are they mortal? Are they mythical creatures coming to life? Whatever it is, it created havoc, and few dare to stand strong to fight it. Few wish to restore peace either to prove their worth or to protect their people.
This is a story filled with suspense. You are not going to get bored. It is short (mayb
Jan 11, 2015 rated it did not like it
• I received an ARC via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you! •

It was the cover that drew me to The Last Quarrel, because, hello, I kind of like it. But, unfortunately, this book wasn't for me. I did like the joking and bickering between the characters but yeah, I'm sorry, I wish I had liked it more.

Thanks again for the arc! :)
M. Monahan
Jan 31, 2015 rated it it was ok
In the country, fishing boats return with their crews mysteriously vanished, while farms are left empty, their owners gone into the night, meals still on the table. In the cities, children disappear from the streets or even out of their own beds. The King tells his people that it is the work of selkies - mythical creatures who can turn from seals into mean and back again - and witches. But no matter how many women he burns at the stake, the children are still being taken.

Fallon is a man who has
Originally published at West Coast Book Reviews.

As the first Episode in a series, I was prepared for the format; players find their places, evil takes a foothold, good gives us a reason to get a comfy chair in their corner and a get the next one in the series NOW cliffhanger.

Done and done.

It also has two things I used to terrify myself with years ago; witch-burnings and unnatural faceless villains.

I like Fallon as a soldier and a family man and also Bridgit, she's got a lot more toughness in her
Jan 30, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy
It was ok. What I didn't like is that the pacing is too slow. Almost nothing happens in the book. I don't know, maybe it's because it's so short. *shrug*
I also think that some sentence don't flow the right away and get the narrative more "clunky".

The characters were ok/good. The story? hmm passable, I guess. Can't say much since it's this short.
Tsana Dolichva
Mar 13, 2015 rated it really liked it
Really just the start of the story. I flipped over to Episode 2 straight away.

The Last Quarrel: Episode One by Duncan Lay is the first of five "episodes" of the BFF (big fat fantasy) novel The Last Quarrel. They're being released a few weeks apart and as of writing episode four has just come out with episode five due in the last week of March. My plan was to review the whole book in one go since I'm not a huge fan of rationed episodes (I prefer to binge watch my TV as well), but since things hav
Ian Wood
Jan 18, 2015 rated it did not like it
This is the complete review as it appears at my blog dedicated to reading, writing (no 'rithmatic!), movies, & TV. Blog reviews often contain links which are not reproduced here, nor will updates or modifications to the blog review be replicated here. Graphic and children's reviews on the blog typically feature two or three images from the book's interior, which are not reproduced here.

Note that I don't really do stars. To me a book is either worth reading or it isn't. I can't rate it three-
Annemarie Macken
Mar 20, 2015 rated it liked it
Episode 1 of 4. This book displays signs of good qualities, wrapped up in some choices which might not be so good. The plot and characterisation show clear promise and, whilst it is an enjoyable enough book to read, the enjoyment is marred somewhat in that it appears to only be a quarter of a book. This could be seen as being hinted at in the title with the use of Episode 1, but it still feels a little as if you have been robbed when it ends with very little having happened. It feels a little un ...more
Feb 18, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2015, arc
See the complete review posted on Book Frivolity. Check out other Fantasy and Historical Fiction ruminations there as well! Here's the thing, it's very hard to rate and review part of a book. I like the concept of releasing a fantasy book in a series of fortnightly episodes (5 I believe, then wrapped up into one later down the track!), but it renders the reviewer a bit stumped. I can say it's very well structured, the writing is clear and concise, and it seems to be a good story line. The prolog ...more
My review cross-posted from Wit and Sin:

Superstition abounds and true magic is hinted at in The Last Quarrel: Episode One. Duncan Lay’s first installment of The Last Quarrel sets the stage for interesting things to come, though on its own Episode One takes quite a while to engage readers. Still, Mr. Lay’s land of myth and magic is interesting and shows true potential. There are creepy monsters, kidnapped children, politics, family strife, a man who wishes
Elena Linville
Jan 22, 2015 rated it it was ok
Shelves: arcs, meh, won-t-recommend
The Last Quarrel has all the makings of a really good book. It's well written, and the characters are engaging (at least some of them), but the problem is that it's NOT a full book, just the first part of a longer novel, cut and thrown out there all by itself.

Now I know that the cover says Episode 1, but when I read a series or watch one, I expect each episode to have a finished story with a larger overlaying arc continued from episode to episode. It's not the case here. The Last Quarrel is slow
Mad about
Jan 16, 2015 rated it liked it
Our adventure is set in the land of Gaelland and follows 2 main leading men, Fallon and Cavan. One is a figurehead Prince, the other a law enforcer in a small coastal town.
Their lives are drastically different but one force which has invaded it's people affects them both as their citizens are going missing.

Prince Cavan is controlled by his ruthless father King Aidan and completes a daily task list of public appearance due to his less aesthetically pleasing brother Swane taking a backseat. He lo
Jan 14, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2015, netgalley, arc
First of all a big thank you to Netgally and the publishers for a advanced copy of this book.

Fallon is a Duke’s man (peacekeeper, sheriff, man of all trades) in the small fishing village of Baltimore. Everything is usually quiet except for the occasional scuffle with men from a neighboring village or dealing with poachers or squabbles between neighbors. All of these things change though when the Duke’s ship comes home with no one on board.

Elsewhere in the kingdom about the same time period young
Rachelle (RavenclawRachelle)
First off, I feel that I must comment on the highly unusual decision to release this as episodic content. This has become more popular recently in the video game industry, but I'm quite interested to see how this translates into the book publishing world.

As the episodic release means that the story its self is quite a bit shorter and without a climax and resolution, its difficult to really get a complete idea of how I feel about this as a whole.

So far the story has been focusing on back story an
Ryan Lawler
Jan 16, 2015 rated it liked it
This is typical high quality fantasy from Lay, but just as the story was starting to gain momentum, the end.of the episode came and I was left in the lurch.

This is a mystery set in a Celitc based world, full of witchcraft, superstition, witchburnings, child abductions, and targetted ship destruction. The maincharacter at the moment is Fallon, who is sick of living an unfulfilled life and is desperate to prove his worth. As I said before, its the usual great stuff from Lay.

This is not a story wri
Abbie DiscoSuperFly
Oct 11, 2015 rated it it was ok
Shelves: x-wobble

Maybe it's me...but honestly, this book was not memorable.

The beginning grabbed me...but it lost me a long the way. Maybe because some the the "historical" aspects, didn't seem quite historical enough, or maybe I just didn't connect with the characters. The "bones" of the book were not too bad, which is why the 2 stars.

I will not be continuing with the series.
Donna Maguire
I was really pleased to be given an opportunity to read this book, I was instantly attracted to the cover and wanted to know more. The first book is building up and setting the scene of what is to come and I have already started reading part 2! I like the characters and the different stories being run at the same time through the book and I am curious to see how they will link up... and most importantly what is responsible for what is happening. Really enjoyed part 1. I received a copy of this b ...more
Trish Mistafa
Apr 01, 2015 rated it liked it
I have never read any of Duncan Lays books before and decided to start with "The Last Quarrel" series. Although the first book was a little slow I kept with it and I am so glad I did. Each book gets better and better to the point where I could not put it down and now I am waiting for the next series "The Bloody Quarrel". I am not happy with the ending of episode 5 (Im a bit of a softy) but I am intrigued enough to want to continue and find out what happens! I'm sure I won't be dissapointed. I gu ...more
Nathan Sims
Apr 05, 2015 rated it liked it
Creating an interesting world that he seems to have a solid handle on, Lay takes great care with the story, developing it carefully and with a delicate hand.

However, I found myself wanting to spend more time with some of the secondary characters than the main characters. The motivations driving those secondary characters sucked me in much more than what I found making the main characters tick.
Brandy S.
Jan 26, 2015 rated it it was ok
Shelves: netgalley
*ARC provided by Netgalley in exchange for an honest review*

I really wanted to like this book. The cover is what initially drew me in. The beginning was pretty slow and hard to get into. Most of the main characters were just kind of thrown at you within the first few pages. It got a little better as it went on but the ending brought it back down with a cliffhanger, leaving everything feeling unresolved. The characters all in all were lacking.
Ginny Lurcock
Jan 23, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: pages-051-150
The Last Quarrel is fucking amazing. The fantasy tale of a prince and a solider both trying to solve a mystery with supernatural implications from two different sides with very different motivations, the story is woven together to perfection. My only regret is that this is the first part of a serial release, so I now have to wait until April for the tale to be released in its entirety.
Mar 09, 2015 rated it it was ok
I wanted to love this book; Australian author, great book cover (I know "don't judge a book by its cover"...but really who doesn't?) ...but I didn't feel for the characters the premise of the story is good. It just didn't grab me and keep me interested. Characters were cliche, story was a little predictable and the ending didn't feel like the cliff hanger I think it was supposed to be.
Was this a book, or just a part of a book? I'm not interested enough in the story to read further.
Venetia Green
Jun 02, 2015 rated it really liked it
Well written and nicely paced, but certain future plot developments seemed transparent from the outset.
Dave Brassington
May 07, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Yet another brilliant fantasy trilogy from Duncan Lay
Maxine Robinson
Mar 01, 2015 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2015
If this was an actual entire novel instead of a section, I'm sure I would have liked it more.
I just don't think you can write a novel and then cut it into sections and sell them as separate books.
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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

The Arbalester Trilogy (3 books)
  • The Last Quarrel: The Complete Edition (The Arbalester Trilogy #1, episodes #1-5)
  • The Bloody Quarrel: The Complete Edition (The Arbalester Trilogy #2, episodes #1-5)
  • The Poisoned Quarrel: The Complete Edition (The Arbalester Trilogy #3, episodes #1-5)