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Master Assassins

(The Fire Sacraments #1)

4.07  ·  Rating details ·  1,365 ratings  ·  214 reviews
Two village boys mistaken for assassins become the decisive figures in the battle for a continent in the thrilling new desert-based epic fantasy by the author of The Red Wolf Conspiracy.

Kandri Hinjuman was never meant to be a soldier. His brother Mektu was never meant for this world. Rivals since childhood, they are drafted into a horrific war led by a madwoman-Prophet, a
Kindle Edition, 504 pages
Published March 6th 2018 by Talos
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James Singh Atleast 3 interesting female characters (Eshett, Talupéké and Ariqina)
Carl Bartlett Adult only- foul language and sexual scenes (sometimes with children)

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Average rating 4.07  · 
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 ·  1,365 ratings  ·  214 reviews

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Mark Lawrence
Dec 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Master Assassins is a fantastic book. I’m going to wax lyrical about it at some length but the take away message is: READ IT! READ IT! READ IT!

The cover while well drawn does the book a disservice in my opinion. It led me to expect something with a more YA sensibility, with a dungeons and dragons vibe, and some master assassins. Nothing wrong with those things, but this book is literary fantasy. Literary fantasy full of excitement, mystery, and even (as per the cover) guys with flaming gauntlets
4+ ⭐️

What a great ARC! Many thanks to author and the publisher for sharing a copy with me.

I came to know about this release from the glowing review by Mark Lawrence, here it is in case you have missed it:

Take away lesson one: trust Mark's recommendations. It is a safe bet.

Take away lesson two: don't be fooled by the cover - it totally mismanages expectations here.

I have plenty of things to praise in this story and only one issue to complain. I will start
*Thea 'Wookiee'sMama' Wilson*
Wowsers! Review to come soon.....
Algernon (Darth Anyan)
May 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2018

Darsunuk! The Time of Madness! It is come, brothers and sisters, the end of all things and the breaking of this world. Who among us will find shelter on the Night of Blood? Who among us shall be spared?

Six years have passed since the last installment of the "Chathrand Voyage" but the wait was worth it. Robert Redick is back with a new high fantasy epic and the start of the journey looks as promising as the last time I embarked on his ship. My preferences have drifted recently towards the more
Feb 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites

“By the third day the rumour can no longer be contained. It is whispered in the black tents, shared like smokes among the men on patrol, murmured in the drill yard before the bellowed morning prayer. It is weird and horrific and yet a curse no one can fail to understand. Someone’s mind has been stolen, and the thief still walks the camp.”

This opening paragraph told me everything I needed to know about the novel in advance. It was going to be intriguing, exciting, beautifully written and I was g
Jun 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This has been a fantastic read! I am so glad that I took a reccomendation to read this, it is refreshing, a rewarding and brilliantly written book that I have not been able to stop reading it! A full review will be on my blog soon, I take my hat of to Mr Redick for producing this fantastic fantasy novel!
kartik narayanan
Mar 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
Master Assassins is a great fantasy read but it is not without its flaws.

It starts off very strongly. The first act is probably my favorite in the book and it reminds me of the Books of the Malazan. The second act is good and the incredible world building stands out here. The last act is the weakest but the climax sets up intriguing possibilities.

The unique aspects of this book are the incredible world building as well as the nuanced interactions between the two brothers. The writing is also no
Mar 02, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: People who want to branch out of traditional fantasy stories
8.5/10 - Review at PBTVS

Okay. Before we get started, I'm going to give a bit of advice on how you might want to approach this book. Lay down some primer.

See, this isn't a book that you'll read the first 80 pages of and go, "Wow, this is a fantastic story!" and start pointing out every part of it that you love. You can't. At least, I couldn't. I had no idea what I felt about it in the beginning.

It's like an interpretive dance. At first you're not quite sure what you're seeing--it all feels so dis
Apr 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing
First things first, thanks to the publisher and author for an ARC of Master Assassins in exchange for an honest review. This is no way, shape, or form sways my judgement of the book itself.

*For future reference, listen to Mark Lawrence when he recommends a novel*

A lot of people have stated that the cover does not do the book justice, and I have to agree. I am not saying that the cover isn’t great, because I believe it is wonderful, but it does not fully capture all that is contained in the subse
Mar 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing
2021 update: Yep, still a favorite!

This was phenomenal.

Find this review at Forever Lost in Literature!

Buckle up and grab some snacks, folks, because this is going to be a long review for a book that has quickly become one of my newest fantasy favorites. Master Assassins is beautiful, dark, raw, jaw-dropping at times, and all-around amazing. Because I run the risk of rambling in a disorganized fashion, I decided that I would organize my review into four main components of the novel that I want t
Quintin Zimmermann
Nov 29, 2017 rated it liked it
This may seem like your traditional fantasy tropes with a village boy, in this case two, but the author subverts these tropes and creates a dark, repressive world where might is right.

The jagged prose of Redick, together with unlikeable characters and strained dialogue, makes Master Assassins a difficult read and I struggled to finish the book.

Master Assassins is the first instalment in The Fire Sacraments series, but I unfortunately will not be returning for more.
C.P. Cabaniss
Mar 07, 2018 marked it as dnf
This is moving to my DNF shelf. Read somewhere between 8-12%. If I feel like going back to it, I may try again at some point.

This sounded really interesting and I was excited to read it, but the writing and characters didn't hold my attention. It felt bogged down and was tedious to read. I'm too busy to spend time on books that I'm not enjoying more.

Not rating this since I didn't read much and I may revisit.
Huw Roberts
Aug 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I didn't think anything could surpass the excellent senlin ascends as my favourite book this year, but Master Assassins is phenomenal. The writing style is unlike anything i've read in fantasy, I was completely engrossed throughout! Amazing book! ...more
Dec 18, 2017 rated it it was amazing
First book of the year and it's a masterpiece!!

First off, I'd like to say: don't judge this book by it's cover. To me, the cover art gave the impression of a very high fantasy book with dragons and such, and it gave me a 'Harry Potter' sort of vibe. In my opinion, it's a bit misleading since this book is not really appropriate for a younger audiences.

The plot is actually very simple and fits the usual fantasy trope: the main character, Kandri, a village boy, accidentally gets into trouble and se
Jun 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Wow! I must do this review later because just.... Wow. I'm coming down from a high on this book and it's just overwhelming almost. I've never read a book by Robert V.S. Redick but if this is any indication of how he writes in all of his books, I'm buying them all. ...more
The Nerd Book Review
Mar 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I asked for an ARC of this novel after hearing some good things about it and I was not disappointed. Chris and I will be recording a review of this book for the podcast that should air at the end of March or beginning of April.
My first thoughts are that in some way the novel reminded me a bit of Malazan, but without all the magic. The story is certainly on the very low magic side of things. The area of the world that we are introduced to is arid and semi-desert, surrounded by a drained sea and
Dec 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I was provided a digital review copy by Talos publishing in exchange for an honest review.

"Love is an illness, a savage enchantment."

Beautifully written, suspenseful, and at times surreal, Robert V.S. Redick's "Master Assassins" crackles with energy, from the magnetic opening passage through the whirling dervish finale. Although this was my first book completed in 2018, it will likely be a contender for book of the year.

I first heard about "Master Assassins" from a review by Mark Lawrence, and
Cait (lil_ms.bookworm)
Feb 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
To call Master Assassins, a fantasy novel, seems almost an insult because it far exceeds typical fantasy tropes (there are no dragons, but don’t worry, there are men yielding gauntlets riding around on saber-toothed cats). Master Assassins is instead a profusion of cultural, religious, and personal complexities expanding across a seemingly despairing landscape. The two protagonists of the story, Kandri and Mektu, half brothers and soldiers in a war driven by a crazed Prophet, stumble into their ...more
Jordanna Brodsky
Mar 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing
The cover and the title make this seem like a run-of-the-mill epic fantasy. Don't be fooled! Beautifully written, beautiful world building, compelling characters, and a plot that has me begging for book two. Check it out! ...more
Jul 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy
Really enjoyed this book, the first in a trilogy.
It supports my belief that the best of the modern fantasy genre, certainly since GRRM, is character led. In this case two half brothers lead the storyline. The description of the sibling relationship is well laid out, mostly through flashbacks to their youth, from their apparent hatred of each other at certain points to their basic brotherly love, plus their rivalries in love. You really understand the complex link between these brothers, and if y
Jul 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2018-reading
I never write reviews; I'm far too lazy and I don't really know how. But I'm breaking my silence on this one. I bought Master Assassins because of Mark Lawrence's glowing review. And then the book just sat there on my Kindle. Yeah, I was a little put off by the title and the cover. The synopsis didn't do that much for me, either. Then I opened it up yesterday. Oh my god.

It's amazing. Just wonderful. The story is compelling. The plot is fabulous. I love the characters - they're exasperating yet
Ned Lud
Apr 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book supersedes Armored Saint and has become my favourite read of the year thus far! Highly recommended. 5+++
Nicole Caines
Aug 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
If you are on the fence whether to read this book or not, do it. It is fantastic. I am very upset that I finished it as quickly as I did.
Micah Hall
Dec 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Master stroke

Where to begin? This book provides everything I love from SFF: insightful characters, philosophy, a pinch of horror, looming prophesies and mysteries, violence with tender moments, some laughs, and a heaping of worlbuilding. This book featured a diverse cast in a setting not usually spotlighted, giving a sense of wonder and freshness that many books lack. A triumph of a book I am EAGERLY awaiting a sequel to.
Dec 18, 2017 rated it it was amazing

Publisher: Skyhorse

Publishing Date: March 2018

ISBN: 9781945863196

Genre: Fantasy

Rating: 4.6/5

Publishers Description: Kandri Hinjuman was never meant to be a soldier. His brother Mektu was never meant for this world. Rivals since childhood, they are drafted into a horrific war led by a madwoman-Prophet, and survive each day only by hiding their disbelief. Kandri is good at blending in, but Mektu is hopeless: impulsive, erratic—and certain that a demon is sta
Jul 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing

My only complaints on this amazing novel are two-fold: 1) that I allowed it to sit on my Kindle’s bookshelf for several weeks instead of reading it immediately and 2) that the sequel, Sidewinders, is not yet available.

This novel- the exquisite opening tale of two brothers’ amazing journey and their companions met along the way- is exactly the type of book we need more: fluid, well-thought out, nuanced and unfurled.

A pleasure to read. A heartache upon ending. Bravo!
Oct 08, 2019 added it
DNFed @ 20%

I'm gonna say that I'm 50% to blame on this and the rest is on the book.
But gosh was I bored, I was bored enough to stop reading and add this to my read shelf! I keep thinking that those have been 3 hours of my life I'd never get back!
Mar 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
“You get a girl with child, you have to live with that forever. Deny her, and it rips out a part of you. Oh, you may get away with it, as far as the world ever learns. But you’ll feel it inside. The spoiling, the rot.”

This quote ties together what I feel like this book is mostly about. Choices. And the consequences of choices. And potentially, what is a right choice?

In advance, I apologize for the length of this review, but there’s TONS to talk about here.

Mostly, I just need to start off this re
Griffin Hansen
Aug 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Bear with me, y'all, because I'm gonna gush about Master Assassins.

Thank you to Caitlin Thomas and Talos Press for my review copy of the book. This in no way affects my review, and it shouldn’t because the book speaks for itself.

Master Assassins is Robert V.S. Redick's fifth novel and the first of The Fire Sacraments series. The book is about two half-brothers, Kandri and Mektu, told from Kandri's perspective. Kandri is a well-respected soldier, but he harbors a reluctance to violence and is une
Apr 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
460 pages, six chapters (a little weird but it works),
two erm 'Master' Assassins, four days to
finish, one fantastic read. Robert V.S. Redick
has done something special here with Master
Assassins and I couldn't stop myself from devouring it over a weekend.

It's intelligent, deep, and chocked full of immersive prose that kept me engrossed throughout. The world building is great and at no point did I feel utterly and completely lost in this world as can be the case with some fantasy. I think it was t
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Fantasy Buddy Reads: Master Assassins [Feb 20, 2018] 21 56 Mar 18, 2018 02:32AM  

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Robert V.S. Redick is in his thirties and works as the editor for the Spanish and French websites of Oxfam America and as an instructor in the International Development and Social Change program at Clark University. Born and raised in Charlottesville, Virginia, he lives in rural western Massachusetts. While his unpublished novel Conquistadors was a finalist for the 2002 AWP/Thomas Dunne Novel Awar ...more

Other books in the series

The Fire Sacraments (2 books)
  • Sidewinders (The Fire Sacraments, #2)

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