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The Winter Road

3.76  ·  Rating details ·  686 ratings  ·  165 reviews
A gritty and epic adventure to appeal to fans of Mark Lawrence, Andrzej Sapkowski and Joe Abercrombie – The Winter Road is a fantasy novel which remembers that battles leave all kinds of scars.

The greatest empire of them all began with a road.

The Circle – a thousand miles of perilous forests and warring clans. No one has ever tamed such treacherous territory before, but ex
Paperback, 496 pages
Published November 13th 2018 by Orbit
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Adrian Selby Hi there :) No, you don't have to. This is set a couple of hundred years before Snakewood. Readers have said this is a bit more accessible in style an…moreHi there :) No, you don't have to. This is set a couple of hundred years before Snakewood. Readers have said this is a bit more accessible in style and structure, so is perhaps a better introduction to the world. Both novels are standalones.
Adrian Selby Hi Ian, it does indeed! It's a story set a few hundred years before the events of Snakewood. It explains the origin of The Post, the nefarious global …moreHi Ian, it does indeed! It's a story set a few hundred years before the events of Snakewood. It explains the origin of The Post, the nefarious global trading company that are involved in some of what happens in Snakewood.(less)

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Sean Barrs
The Winter Road is one of the strongest standalone fantasy novels I have ever read. It has all the depth of a fully fleshed out series in just one volume and it really does pack a hefty punch. I’m impressed with everything Selby has done here, and I shall certainly be reading anything else he may write in the future.

The cleverest device he wields is language because it reflects his characters and world perfectly. There are made up words, rough colloquialisms and harsh sounding dialogue. It sets
John Gwynne
Dec 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I’ve just finished reading Adrian Shelby’s THE WINTER ROAD. It’s flipping brilliant. This book took me on an emotional rollercoaster. It’s adult and grim, but instead of the nihilism and bleakness of much Grimdark these days it has a streak of love and hope running through the heart of it. Most of that is to be found in the central character, Teyr Amondsen. She's flawed, vulnerable and also as hard as nails. I loved her, I loved this book. Highly recommended.
If you have been on pins and needles breathlessly anticipating a warm-hearted adventure filled with talking dragons, sugarplums, and fairies 🧚‍♀️, then Selby’s The Winter Road probably isn’t what you’ve been waiting for. It’s a fantasy adventure but one that would make all Cimmerians proud.

It features a battle-hardened aging mercenary battling against impossible odds. It’s grim, gritty, dark, foreboding, and filled with nasty sword fights with bloody consequences. Indeed, it’s a world where the
Nov 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: books-own, signed
I need a while to let this book sink in. What an intense story it is, it blew me away... Teyr is such a remarkable, strong woman or rather force of nature... And yes, it made me cry a little too... I will write more once I get my thoughts together again.

Two days later and I feel like I'm ready to say some more. This was one of my most anticipated books this year and my expectations were high, to say the least...
It's the story of one woman trying to fulfill a dream, to make life a little better a
Apr 15, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy
THE BROTHERS GWYNNE (aka me and my brother) interviewed Adrian Selby. Check out the video here! YouTube It was a lot of fun!

Woah...Selby is a gutsy writer, no denying that. Incredibly original and intense.

Mogsy (MMOGC)
Dec 29, 2018 rated it really liked it
4.5 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum https://bibliosanctum.com/2019/01/10/...

I feel like 2018 was the year of second chances. When I finished The Winter Road, I had a hard time believing this was by the same author as Snakewood, a debut that…well, I thought was okay, but didn’t exactly love. But whether it was the change in protagonist or Adrian Selby has just seriously upped his game (to be honest, it’s probably both), this book worked much better for me than his first one.

The Winter Road actual
Holly (The GrimDragon)
"He falls and I get down on his chest and my good hand seeks his face, shoving it into the earth to stop its writhing, drive my one good thumb through an eye far as it'll go. A shout behind me, I twist to jump clear but the spear goes through me. Out my front it comes, clean out of my guts."

Oh, my heart.

This is one of those books that I held to my chest while tears poured down my face once I had finished. It was such a beautifully brutal story. I was both emotionally exhausted and physically dra
The Tattooed Book Geek (Drew).
This review can also be found on my blog The Tattooed Book Geek: https://thetattooedbookgeek.wordpress...

I started reading The Winter Road the day before Red Dead Redemption 2 came out. To say that I had been eagerly awaiting the release of that game would be a massive understatement! I have waited years to get my cowboy and Old West fix, years!🤠 Saying that, however, I played some of the game (it has a slow start but it’s good. Alas, only time will tell if it is as good as the first RDR game) b
Dec 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorite-reads
The Winter Road by Adrian Selby absolutely gripped me, start to finish. Teyr Amondsen is one of the best characters I’ve ever read. She’s an absolute force of nature, a stone-cold badass, but with a fierce ambition to prove herself while making life better for people in and around The Circle.
I won’t add to the book’s blurb, but I’ll just put down what made me love The Winter Road. The writing and crafting of this book is beautiful, from the bloody start to the bittersweet end. I found the style
Nick Borrelli
Dec 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
4 1/2 stars

Adrian Selby's name has been on the tongues of many readers lately and it's mostly glowing in nature. THE WINTER ROAD is the Welsh author's second full-length novel (the first being Snakewood, set in the same world as this one). It was with a great deal of excitement that I was able to procure an advance copy of his latest novel just as the aforementioned buzz was reaching its pinnacle. The story of THE WINTER ROAD takes place in an area of land known as "The Circle". The Circle is st
Chris Berko
Nov 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing
The more things change the more they stay the same. This book reminded me that things happen to us all the time, terrible or joyous, happy or sad, and we get through them because on a long enough timeline we are who we are.
The writing took me a minute to get used to, and I had to reread certain sentences in the beginning but once it clicked I was hooked. Overall I think it led to the story as it felt like I was sitting there listening to someone I didn't know from somewhere I have never been te
Jan 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
I had seen a few blogger friends of mine rate this book highly so I decided to check it out. I went into it cold, I had no idea what the book was going to be about or even what genre it was – what I got was a darker high fantasy

Teyr was once a mercenary, but has since found love and adopted her husband’s son, treating the boy like her own. I found her to be a very different kind of militant, humanized by her love, passion, and a desire to have a do-over at life. She kills when she needs to, but
Apr 28, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Not the easiest book to get into, but once I grew accustomed to the colloquialisms and terms used by awesome main character Teyr Amondsen, I was hooked. This is a brutal tale told by Teyr during two time periods: her past when she had grand plans to build a road that would help promote trade amongst the different people living in the Circle and her home Hillfast, and in Teyr’s present, when she’s beaten and defeated in many ways and looking for death.
A former soldier, Teyr is adept at dealing o
Hiu Gregg
Nov 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: arcs
The Winter Road is a book which ticks a lot of boxes. It’s quite action-heavy, with a fair few exciting fight scenes. It has a main character who is both sympathetic and pretty badass. It has a unique world with its own troubles, societies, and magic. And it has a plot which, although pretty simple on the face of it, is engaging and gives our main character plenty of room to shine.

Teyr Amondsen is a mercenary-turned-merchant who wishes to construct a road to link together the clans who live in t
Sean Smart
Mar 16, 2019 rated it did not like it
I wanted to like this book but after a week and 200 pages or so I just could not get in to this one and found it disappointing
Edward Lorn
Jul 23, 2020 rated it it was ok
I mean, are any of you really surprised? I'mma keep trying fantasy until I find something I like, tho. ...more
The Captain
Nov 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy
Ahoy there me mateys!  I received this fantasy eARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.  So here be me honest musings . . .

Damn, what a good book!  The blurb does not do this one justice at all.  This is a grimdark fantasy that follows Teyr Amondsen, an ex-soldier.  She be awesome!  Her goal is to build a trade road that will bring the communities of the Circle together through commerce and thus allow more people to prosper.  While a lofty goal, her plans are threatened when a selfi
Mar 17, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
Teyr Amondsen is a former mercenary, a user of the potent fightbrews that all serious soldiers use to stand against other fighters who've "paid the colour", so-called because of the discoloration of the skin that is only one of the many side-effects of the drugs. In parallel stories we follow Teyr after she survives a near-fatal and total defeat, and the year leading up to that defeat. Her path to redemption leads to confronting just how much (and who) she has lost in seeking her ambitions, and ...more
Feb 23, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy
Quite torn on this one and 3.5/5 I think.

On the one hand - great character in Teyr who I really did like a lot. She goes somewhere past hell at times in this. Hard and violent at times (and the book is generally). Parts of this I loved and fascinated me. The brews were an example and definitely the Oskoro. It is quite difficult to convey just how powerful the good bits were. Her relationship with Aude would be one example of that.

On the other hand - frustrating in many ways. I would have liked t
Jason Aycock
Mar 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy
I finished The Winter Road last night, set the book down, closed my eyes, and took a deep breath. I had to collect myself a moment - had to pause and digest it. The Winter Road is a story of the pain and heartbreak that underlies human achievement. It's the kind of book I haven't read in a while, like you're drawing back the curtain on some grand event in history where everyone knows the glorious result, only to discover the grim truth about how it came to be. One where the reader is pulled thro ...more
Jan 31, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
But there’s a knot, must be in all of us, mustn’t it, a protectiveness when we think of the fields, faces and songs that rise in our memories on our thinking of home.

There’s a steep price to pay, both in coin and blood, in making sure the paths that lead home are safe for those seeking their bloodlands. For the Circle is vast and rife with a wildness and dangers and mysteries that none until now have attempted to tame. Teyr Amondsen, ex-soldier of renown, hopes to use the wealth she has gain
Ned Ludd
Nov 23, 2018 rated it it was ok
I personally felt the prose was disjointed and could not bring myself to invest or care for the MC. 2.5*
Oct 31, 2018 rated it really liked it
Thanks to Orbit and the author for an early finished copy of The Winter Road in exchange for an honest review. Receiving this advanced copy does not influence my thoughts or opinions on the novel, but loving Selby's first novel, Snakewood, might have bumped it up a weensy bit.

Also, just as an FYI, my review is a tiny bit spoilery if you haven't read Snakewood, but it won't ruin the read for you at all. 

Teyr Amondsen, ex-merc and mother, is on a mission. One no soul has ever attempted and lived t
Maja Ingrid
2,5 stars

I'm not having the greatest start of the year with my books

I wanted to like this book. I really did. Thing is I'm not even sure why I bought it at all. I've tried reading an excerpt from Orbit several times but couldn't get through it at all. But I saw some promising reviews and wanted to give it a proper chance.

It does have a promising plot and worldbuilding, and Teyr is a really well written character, I really liked her. BUT the writing. I didn't like it at all. It's the kind of writ
Feb 22, 2020 rated it liked it
3 Stars

*A gritty but befuddling tale of revenge and redemption*

Since joining Goodreads, I have found that my spontaneous selection of books has decreased to almost none. I always have such a long To Read list that I rarely get around to just wandering through the shelves to see what fits my fancy. So I indulged in a short jaunt through the library to get a couple of impulse reads. I was drawn to The Winter Road because of the winter vibes and the gorgeous cover. Then I saw that it was publishe
It made me feel things.
Aug 01, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Edit: changed it to 5 stars because I still can’t stop thinking about this book.

This is my first Selby read, and what a story! The only issue I had was that the beginning was a little slow for me and the writing style took me a while to get used to. However, when I finally got there, I was blown away by his characters (especially the MC), the dialogue and the depth to the narrative.

There were a lot of themes tackled: motherhood, family, purpose, the cost of ambition etc, being a woman in a man
Nov 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Gritty, raw, compelling, and emotionally powerful book. I have read other reviews comparing this author to Joe Abercrombie, John Gwynne and frankly that is one reason I chose to read this work and it is well deserved. An emotionally powerful, epic tale of an incredible woman with an indomitable will, spirit and clarity of mind. The book is a complete saga of incredible magnitude and powerful impact that will not be forgotten. I am a fan, Adrian Selby, incredibly well written, well done. I look f ...more
Dec 14, 2018 rated it really liked it
4.33/5 stars
A very atmospheric and personal story. Teyr Amondson may be one of the best developed characters I've ever read about.
Nov 01, 2018 marked it as to-read
Shelves: fantasy, war, epic

Drew wrote a fantastic review. Check it out if you're into epic, war-torn fantasy!

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I studied Creative Writing and Philosophy at university before going on to do a variety of jobs including teaching and running my own business before I got into videogames as a Producer for most of my career since.

Snakewood is my debut and is the first novel I've written!

I live in the southeast of England, though I grew up in Barry, South Wales.

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