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Treachery's Tools

(Imager Portfolio #10)

4.18  ·  Rating details ·  868 ratings  ·  59 reviews
Treachery's Tools is L. E. Modesitt's tenth novel in the New York Times bestselling Imager Portfolio fantasy series and begins thirteen years after the events of Madness in Solidar.

Alastar has settled into his role as the Maitre of the Collegium. Now married with a daughter, he would like nothing better than to focus his efforts on improving Imager Isle and making it more
Hardcover, 510 pages
Published October 11th 2016 by Tor Books
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4.18  · 
Rating details
 ·  868 ratings  ·  59 reviews

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Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽
Sep 30, 2016 marked it as on-hiatus
I just opened a package with a very nice hardback copy of the ARC of this book from the publisher. The only problem is I haven't read any of the books in this series, and I don't recall ever requesting this book. So, thanks, I guess?

Can anyone tell me a little about this series and its world? :D
Nov 04, 2016 rated it really liked it
This is a sequel to Madness in Solidar which needs to be read first & well remembered since Modesitt dumped me into a flurry of names & political intrigue. I liked it. As usual, he really delves into the economic basis for power struggles as a world is changing from a feudal society into an industrial one. There is plenty of action as the High Holders (feudal lords) try to keep their power against the rising merchant (factors) class with a weak king (Rex) dithering at the top. It's a mat ...more
a follow-up to Madness in Solidar and a middle book in the sequence to be continued (and maybe concluded) in Assassin's Price - if one follows the series, one knows where this arc goes as it is the middle in the historical timeline between the unification of Solidar by Quaeryt under Rex Regis's rule (in an almost late medieval time of wars, bad roads, feudal relationships, with the beggining of cannon, muskets and gunpowder technology) in the 5 books of that sequence and the modern Solidar of Rh ...more
William Bentrim
Oct 12, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Treachery's Tools by L.E. Modesitt, jr

This is the newest book in the excellent Imager series. I had lamented recently at the infrequency of Modesitt books and then just weeks after getting Recluce Tales, this book appeared at my door inciting a WhooHoo on my part. The previous sentences should leave no doubt in your mind that I really enjoy Modesitt's work. This book takes up 13 years after the Madness in Solidar. The Collegium, home of the imagers. Times are a changing and High Holders and Fact
Oct 07, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Originally published at Reading Reality

They say that “age and treachery beat youth and skill”. In this book, the formula is more likely, “age and skill beat youth and treachery”. That’s not quite there either, but it’s a lot closer to the mark.

This is also a story about change, and the resistance to it. And because of that, Treachery’s Tools is primarily a political story. By that I mean politics as war conducted by other means, at least until war becomes necessary as a way of either cementing v
Jan 07, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ebook, maps, fantasy
“There’s not much difference between arrogance and stupidity. Arrogance, though, is the brother of treachery.”

This is weird. Ten novels deep into the series, and this story is the best of the bunch. Good world building and plot development, despite Modesitt constraining himself (and the reader) to a single protagonist’s point of view. What set this story apart is redemption. Yes, in every previous story the good guys were good and the baddies bad and no one ever changes. Here, someone does. Wit
Lupine Smile
Sep 12, 2018 rated it really liked it
As time plays its ever diminishing song, there are choruses that repeat, some joyful, and some painful. This work continues in the Imager world as a direct sequel to Madness in Solidar, and deals with the choices that have to be made that can either fix, or just postpone future paths and their impact on society. Most importantly, this book deals with the consequences of constantly looking to the past and choosing ignorance as the simple and least painful choice of the moment. The problem is that ...more
Feb 23, 2017 rated it really liked it
Slow start but worth it.
Oct 29, 2016 rated it really liked it
As usual, another good one from Mr Modesitt. The beginning quarter was rather slow, with the usual "Day 1: he did this, ate that, went to see this person; Day 2: it was raining, went to see that and then ate this and said that". Was a bit of a tedium at first but I braved onward, knowing that there'd be a payoff as there usually is in these books. And true enough, all the daily grind painted a clear background of what's happening, and the impact of the changes that you can really see escalating. ...more
Nov 15, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy, library
I have loved this series.Well, actually I have loved all of Modesitt's books. I love the intricacy, the storyline, the religious reflections and the human drama played out. As always we are reminded that history repeats itself. The battles thought left behind, solved in the past often have to be re-fought by successive generations. So it is with the struggles of the Imagers. If you hadn't read previous stories the religious reference to the 'Nameless' one could easily be passed over. This, a cen ...more
Nov 07, 2016 rated it liked it
This is the tenth book in the Imager series. But really this is the second book of the third Imager series. The first Imager series (the first three Imager books) was very, very good. The second Imager series (the next five books) was uniformly outstanding. This series, not so much. It is slow; almost plodding along without much action or intrigue. Compared to the first eight books it is a snooze. Now Modesitt is a very good author. I just don't feel this third series of Imager books is as good ...more
Barbara Douglas
Oct 23, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Another excellent entry in the Imager's Portfolio, which I recommend to anyone who loves a good story in a fascinating world with strong characters who wrestle with political realities. That said, if you don't know the series, (about a world where a select few have the power to create or remove matter in all it's forms at will) this is probably not the place to start. The beginning of this arc,Madness in Solidar, is a possible place, but even better is either Imager, which features a young man l ...more
Nov 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
It was a fun read with a satisfying ending. I enjoyed the interplay between Alyna and Alastar as husband and wife. Some things I can imagine my wife saying to me. While the characters don't show a lot of growth, they are still interesting to watch as they interact. The Rex is a jerk, but he is the Rex after all, so it is needful for Alastar to deal with him and ultimately protect him. That's an interesting dynamic.

The latter part of the book is about the skirmishes and final battle in a war bet
Dennis Hearon
Oct 13, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy
Sigh ! It is so unfortunate when a talented writer rests on his laurels and writes a book with the only evident purpose to cash a paycheck. The Imager series has been Modesitt's best, new series since he started the Recluse books, outshining his Corean Chronicles and the Spellsong series. But even this series has some striking similarities to all of its predecessors. Each new series involves some new system of magic. Then, in a series of two or three book arcs, we get snapshots in time from the ...more
Denae Christine
Nov 08, 2017 rated it really liked it
Reader thoughts: The MC was much older in this book, 52. That made it harder to relate to him, but his daughter and niece were 10 and 13. So, they were more interesting to me.

There were more threats with more danger and explosions in this book than the previous, and that is the main reason I gave it a higher rating. We had rogue imagers and a new power (sensing concealed imagers), but otherwise it was pretty much just like the previous book with the maitre trying to get the Rex and High Holders
Mary Soon Lee
May 13, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
This is the tenth and currently the last book in Modesitt's fantasy series, "The Imager Portfolio." It takes place thirteen years after the preceding book and centers on the same main character, Alastar, now in his early fifties. I appreciated the choice of an older protagonist, and I enjoyed the book thoroughly, if a little less than most of the Imager books.

Over the past nine months, I have read Modesitt's two longest fantasy series in their entirety, "The Saga of Recluce" and "The Imager Port
Dec 04, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
Solidar, 400 years after Queyrt and Velora, we have Alastar and Alyna, Maitres at the Imagisle. Alastar must navigate history repeating itself between High Holders, Factors and the Rex in order to keep the Collegium safe. Imagers are not so many, not so strong and somewhat isolated from the general public which allows each of the sides to view changes in the land from polarizing positions. Alastar and his wife stand strong. Great storytelling as usual from L.E. Modesitt, Jr. Love all the worlds ...more
Jan 12, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Still got it

As others have pointed out, Modesitt really is an acquired taste kind of author. He has a very specific style and there are those who don’t care for it and others who find his writing just fits his novels perfectly. I’m one of the latter.

Treachery’s Tools is classic Modesitt - great world building, lived-in details, that specific cadence of action. Still, there seems to be something lacking in this outing hence the 3-star rating. The other books in the Imager series are more 3.5-4 s
May 18, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
After 13 years as Maitre of the Collegium, Alastar has managed to revamp the training at the Collegium. But actions on the part of High Holders and factors threaten the stability of Solidar and the rule of the current Rex. Especially when certain High Holders take to armed rebellion and subvert imagers to aid them. Plenty of typical Modesitt detail and action before the situation is resolved.
Jul 25, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Good read

This is a typical good book by LEM. I like the plot and characters. It had a few surprises at the end. It posed an interesting set of enemies i.e. Factors vs high holders. It took a complex revolt like the French Revolution and complimented the revolt with imaging and more practical conclusion. I really liked it. To bad inept king of France did not has a squad away spy/imperial guard to keep him in power and give wise advise. Wasn't Rex just an idiot?
Fredrick Danysh
Feb 12, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
Civil war once again raises its ugly head in Solidar as the High Holders want the return of their privileges that were removed by the Codex established by the first Rex Regis. Maitre of the Collegium must battle to save the imagers and Solidar itself. This is an action packed story well worth reading by fans of Modesitt, Asimov, Norton, and Heinlein as well as other science fiction masters.
Steve Pillinger
Jan 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
I found this slow in places, with a lot of 'telling' of the political situation and occasionally tedious descriptions of military tactics. The overall crisis, also, was not as compelling as in other books. However the Modesitt magic did kick in, so it was far from a total write-off. Just not quite as gripping as other books in the series.
Mark Zodda
I am a fan of the Imager series and L.E. Modesitt's writing in general. This latest entry in the series kept my attention and improved on many of the previous books by limiting the pages given over to the philosophy of the Nameless. Looking forward to the next book.
Praveen Mathew
Sep 27, 2017 rated it liked it
Although the writing remains good, the plot was very similar to as before, and something I missed is how an Imager explores and finds out new things. Everything in here is almost a repeat of old things.
Jul 31, 2016 rated it really liked it
I continue to enjoy Modesitt's Imager series. A very detailed world, with strong characters and an interesting magic system. This book picks up ~10 years after the previous, and does a good job of revisiting characters and themes from that book while allowing for some realistic changes with time.
Oct 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Like most of the reviewers I am a fan of the Solidar series and
greatly enjoyed the latest volume.
Politics for the real world where people are not perfect and strive to make the best of difficult situations.
Brandon Stone
Not as good as earlier books

Seemed like a regurgitation of the same tired formula. The middle of the book was slow and ultimately the story revealed little to nothing new about imaging. This was the first book in the series I felt I had to slog my way through. The only redeeming point was the final battle, but even it pales in comparison to the battles of previous books, particularly of the first Rex.
Aug 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
Still a good story, even if the plot basically is repeated in each book. I enjoy the books and plan to read the next book.
Henry Keen
Jun 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Always a great read. I love L.E.Modesitts fantasy books. Wish I could get into his SF. It would give me more of his books to read.
May 18, 2017 rated it liked it
As someone invested in the lager market, I recommend the book.
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L. E. (Leland Exton) Modesitt, Jr. is an author of science fiction and fantasy novels. He is best known for the fantasy series The Saga of Recluce. He graduated from Williams College in Massachusetts, lived in Washington, D.C. for 20 years, then moved to New Hampshire in 1989 where he met his wife. They relocated to Cedar City, Utah in 1993.

He has worked as a Navy pilot, lifeguard, delivery boy, u

Other books in the series

Imager Portfolio (1 - 10 of 12 books)
  • Imager (Imager Portfolio, #1)
  • Imager's Challenge (Imager Portfolio, #2)
  • Imager's Intrigue (Imager Portfolio, #3)
  • Scholar (Imager Portfolio, #4)
  • Princeps (Imager Portfolio, #5)
  • Imager's Battalion (Imager Portfolio, #6)
  • Antiagon Fire (Imager Portfolio, #7)
  • Rex Regis (Imager Portfolio, #8)
  • Madness in Solidar (Imager Portfolio, #9)
  • Assassin’s Price (Imager Portfolio, #11)
“When things aren’t going well, many will follow anyone who promises he can make things better, especially without more hardship,” 0 likes
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