Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Foundryside (The Founders Trilogy #1)” as Want to Read:
Foundryside (The Founders Trilogy #1)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview


(The Founders Trilogy #1)

4.22  ·  Rating details ·  22,182 ratings  ·  3,598 reviews

The city of Tevanne runs on scrivings, industrialised magical inscriptions that make inanimate objects sentient; they power everything, from walls to wheels to weapons. Scrivings have brought enormous progress and enormous wealth - but only to the four merchant Houses who control them. Everyone else is a servant or slave, or they eke a precarious living in the hellhole cal

Kindle Edition, 512 pages
Published August 23rd 2018 by Jo Fletcher Books (first published August 21st 2018)
More Details... Edit Details
Featured Notes & Highlights
Robert Bennett
Robert Bennett - dull suburban dad with slightly interesting side job

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Foundryside, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
Rase McCray If there weren't sequels planned, you'd be disappointed. But the story does reach a nice logical stopping point that is a satisfying place to pause.

If there weren't sequels planned, you'd be disappointed. But the story does reach a nice logical stopping point that is a satisfying place to pause.

Something the other answer didn't mention: Bennett is a much faster writer than your question implies, so you also won't be waiting forever. Book #2 is already slated for publication in August 2019, and he's published a book every year or two since 2012. Therefore, I expect the conclusion of the trilogy in 2020 or early 2021 at the latest.(less)
Zach Darr-Rodriguez The scene is set for further romance during the sequels, but make no mistake, this series is about action and intrigue.

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.22  · 
Rating details
 ·  22,182 ratings  ·  3,598 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Foundryside (The Founders Trilogy #1)
chai ♡
*reads a heist book* nice

*reads a heist book with flawlessly executed worldbuilding, a wonderfully diverse cast of characters (the two main characters are black), expertly written character development, and a burgeoning sapphic romance* N I C E

The first in a brand-new series, Foundryside introduces a world that is pure molten menace, one that feels real enough to have its own passport stamp and arresting enough that—even if you wouldn't want to live there—you'll doubtless want to visit.

In Te
Brandon Sanderson
Foundryside by Robert Jackson Bennett

We’ve been looking for a chance to blurb Robert Jackson Bennett’s fantasy novels since my assistants Peter and Isaac loved City of Stairs when it came out in 2014. Now we have our chance. Bennett’s new novel, Foundryside, releases on August 21st of this year, and it is quite a bit of fun.

RJB filled The Divine Cities trilogy with unique world building, and I’ll be honest, the first chapter or two of Foundryside had me wondering if he’d abandoned that for a mor
Emily (Books with Emily Fox)
Why do authors keep including a scene where a son looks at his mom and thinks "she was StIlL beautiful... bUt she was also looking her age".

Are sons this obsessed about the wrinkles of their mom and I don't know about it?! Is this a thing? I think not!

I'm so torn. I really thought I was going to give this book 5 stars after I had heard so many people compare the magic system to some of the ones created by Brandon Sanderson and... meh.

Yes, the magic system was unique and complex. The st
Miranda Reads

The soles of her boots touched earth, and she started to run.
No matter the cost, Sancia will do what it takes to survive. She's carved out an existence in one of the most inhospitable places in the city.

She's a woman of many hats - thief, liar, plunderer, and more:
"But the fire was you as well?"
Sancia shrugged. "Shit got out of hand."
She takes on odd jobs - often stealing items from one merchant house and selling it to another...though the latest adventure might just take a cake.
Sep 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Bennett and Sanderson fans
Shelves: favorites
4.5/5 stars

Foundryside was an incredibly addictive and entertaining read from start to finish.

I’m a recent fan of Robert Jackson Bennett’s books. Three months ago on the last week of May, I binged read his critically acclaimed trilogy, The Divine Cities, and it became one of my favorite trilogies of all time; I forced my friends and everyone I know to pushed the trilogy up their TBR immediately. Since finishing The Divine Cities, Foundryside, the first book in Bennett’s newest trilogy, immediate
Mar 31, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Matthew by: Morgannah
Fantastic Five Star Fantasy

Good things: Can you hear us?

Me: Yes, I hear you!

Good things: We are ALL ABOUT Foundryside!

Publisher: Here, check out a copy!

Me: Sweet!

Goodreads community: This book is awesome!

Goodreads Choice Awards: Nominated!

Hype: Lived up to!

Action, adventure, humor, a cool magic system, etc. - so much freakin' goodness in these pages. Creative to the max! I think this book will appeal to most people who love fantasy and even a few who don't. Seems to be set up for a series and I
Robert Jackson Bennett is one of the few authors I watch out for. Recently, I finished his early award-winning book (Philip K. Dick, Edgar, Anthony), The Company Man so I was very excited at the opportunity to read an advanced reader copy of Foundryside, his latest work.

Bennett has a habit of starting out a book slow, letting the reader get a feel for the world and the characters before heading into action. He's gotten better at that through his career; Foundryside springs into action on the fir
Apr 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites-2019
This was so magical and unexpected! Sadly the sequel doesn’t come out until 2020 *sobs* Review to come on my channel!
Jul 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
i love when friends recommend books to me because, when i enjoy it, it makes it easier for me to recommend it to everyone else.

this is the PERFECT fantasy for book for those who dont like fantasy, or are wanting to get more into the genre. its a very subtle magical system - it plays a great part in the story, but it doesnt demand attention. it feels natural and is integrated very well into the setting and plot.

and what a plot it is. there is a great balance between action and thievery, breakin
✘✘ Sarah ✘✘ (former Nefarious Breeder of Murderous Crustaceans)
💥 Feb. 22, 2021: only $2.99 today!!!

And the moral of this reread is: Robert Jackson Bennett, thank thee kindly ever so much. Because of you I am now in hopeless, desperate 💕lurve💕 with a key. A bloody shrimping KEY.

[May 2018]

🥇🦐 Shrimpiest Book of the Year Award Nominee! 🦐🥇

Actual rating: 6.848697 stars. And a half.

Okay. So this book is so bloody fishing scrumptious I don't know where to start. By foaming at the mouth maybe? Not a bad idea, actually, that usually works pretty well for me.

Oh yes,
Jen/The Tolkien Gal/ジェニファー
Buddy read with Karishma

DNF'd at about 7%. I couldn't. I am absolutely sick of YA female characters written with the extreme "independent" women complex/syndrome. I can't take it anymore. I'm done. Done. YA has ruined the concept of the female character - why should it be a concept in the first place? Why can't characters be characters and their gender not the focal point of the book? What happened to personality and strength and complexity being the focal point of a character? WHY???

Image result for I'm done gif
Jeffrey Keeten
Sep 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
”Sancia saw the nightscape of Tevanne below her, suddenly rendered in the juddering, jangly tangles of silver scrivings, thousands and thousands and thousands of them, like a dark mountain range covered in tiny candles. She watched in wonder as the scrived bolts hissed through the air above her, glittering like falling stars as they sped out over the city, a city that swarmed with minds and thoughts and desires like a forest full of fireflies.”

Sancia Grado is an outcast. She is an escaped slave
Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin
Well hell, I thought since the majority of my friends loved this book, I wouldn’t like it. Just goes to show what I know. I fell in love with a key 😉

Mel 🖤🐶🐺🐾
This Review ✍️ Blog 📖 Twitter 🐦 Instagram 📷

Reviewed together with book 2, check my blog in the link above or the second book review.

Will this heist story fill the gap that Six of Crows left?
Val ⚓️ Shameless Non-Snowflake ⚓️
4 - 4.5 Stars

I polished this thing off in less than a day, so if that isn't a glowing recommendation, I don't know what is. This book had almost everything I love about great high fantasy: epic world-building, a cohesively complex magic system, and a cool main character with dope fantasy book skills.

Something else this book made me realize I like? Fantasy heist-style books.

What can I say, I just love it when a group of seeming misfits bands together to achieve a common goal. Think The Final Em

ARC provided by Crown in exchange for an honest review.

“Foundryside. The closest thing Sancia had to a home.”

This is a really hard book for me to rate. The concepts in this book are so unique and creative; I loved them so very much! But some of the banter and conversations felt so dry, boring, and sometimes even offensive. Like, two of the main characters have completely captured my whole heart! The others? Meh. I do think this is worth it though, especially if you have enjoyed Rober
J.L.   Sutton
Jun 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
“There are many dangers here, child, she’d said once. Many. Many ugly things you’re going to have to do. It will be a great contest for you. And you’re going to think: How do I win?

Foundryside by Robert Jackson Bennett | The Fantasy Hive

So much more than I expected! Fantastic! It didn’t take long to recognize that Robert Jackson Bennett’s Foundryside (Founders #1) was something special. Before this book was offered to me for review, Bennett was not a writer I was familiar with. Now, I’m positive that I’ll be reading more of his work. His female he
Robin (Bridge Four)
Sale Alert: Kindle Deal $2.99

Just as good on the second read. I'm glad I did it before jumping into Shorefall, there is a ton of info in this book that I'm really happy I have a refresher on.

Re-reading in anticipation of Shorefall

This review was originally posted on Books of My Heart

You know what more books need…More sentient inanimate objects.


Some of my favorite things in some of the other fantasies I’ve read have been things like Nightblood, the sentient sword in the Cosmere series of Bra
Robert Jackson Bennett's deserves all of the 5 dazzling stars for this utterly gripping, epic fantasy adventure thriller, that is the first of this hotly anticipated series. Bennett engages in wonderful world building of the city of Tevanne with its 4 powerful family merchant houses and the more poverty stricken outsiders residing in the slums of The Commons. Tevanne runs on industrialised magic through the use of scriving, a specialist art that involves coding to change reality for things to en ...more
Mary ~Ravager of Tomes~
Sancia Grado is lonesome thief on the streets of Foundryside. When we enter the book, she's right in the middle of pulling off a job that requires her to steal a small, unassuming box from a safe that's locked up extra tight. Difficult, right?

Not for Sancia, partially due to the fact that she's able to feel the layout of objects when they touch her bare skin. It's not nearly as hard to pick a lock when the lock volunteers its own combination as soon as it's touched!

She can also hear scrived obj
Re-Read 1/21/20:

I really can't outdo my previous review. I'm still mightily impressed and thrilled to death over the magic system. The purpose of rules is to find loopholes. :)

NOW, on to the second book in the series! :) WOOOOOO!

Original Review:

Sometimes I come across a piece of fiction that tickles every single one of my funnybones. As in thoroughly delighting me. Charming me. Making me fall in love.

This is one of those.

I mean, don't get me wrong, I've LOVED Bennett's City of Stairs books and g
Jennifer ~ TarHeelReader
5 fantasy stars to Foundryside! 🌟 🌟 🌟 🌟 🌟

This was the second of two fantastic fantasy books I was invited to read from Crown Publishing. I am an eclectic reader, and for whatever reason, I do not reach for fantasy as often, but just the same, I tend to savor it when I do.

Foundryside is Sancia’s story. A skilled thief, she has been sent on a mission to take a hugely powerful artifact from a guarded warehouse in the impoverished city of Tevanne.

This artifact is used in “scriving,” which is codin
Sep 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018, arc
FANTASTIC! 5 STARS ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

ARC provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review via NetGalley.

This is the first book that I’ve read of Robert Jackson Bennett and I was impressed. The writing of Foundryside is great from the beginning, to the end.
It starts off strong, the pacing is well done, and the ending was a blast! The action sequences impressed the hell out of me.

The characterization of Sancia Grado was one of the best things in this book. I loved this badass woman. I'm looking
Aug 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
You know that feeling you get? The excitement and high from reading a stunning story? Yeah- that.
A phenomenal piece of fantasy and feat of imagination! A complex world of mechanics, sigils, scriving is brought to life by Bennet with a wonderful cast of characters. The pacing was fantastic, never a dull moment and very hard to put down (not that I wanted to!). I can’t wait for the next one. I loved City of Stairs, but for some reason, never went back and finished the trilogy despite all the rave
Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽
May 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: arc, fantasy
4.5 stars for this great fantasy novel, just published this month, with an intricate magical system that reminds me of Brandon Sanderson. Tevanne is a city with a huge gap between the haves and have-nots, and magical devices are integral to the city's functioning. Sancia is a thief with secret (and illegal) magical powers that make her particularly good at getting into and out of secure buildings, but also make it difficult for her to live a normal life. When Sancia is sent to steal a box from a ...more
Sebastien Castell
Apr 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Foundryside is a novel that is perpetually combining elements you'd have thought wouldn't be compatible, and yet Robert Jackson Bennet pulls the feat off every time. I was lucky enough to be given an advance reader copy of the book and found it immensely well conceived and executed.

When you begin the novel, you're immediately drawn into a piece of classic fantasy storytelling: a daring (if troubled) young thief in the middle of a dangerous heist, using a mix of magic and cleverness to survive. T
Carol (Bookaria)
This is an action-packed, entertaining, and adventurous story.

We follow Sancia Grado, a young thief trying to survive in a poverty-ridden city as she tries to steal a powerful device. In this world, objects have been modified with a mystical process called scriving. When an object is scrived it forces it to behave in a way different that it was designed to.

The author did a great job with the world building. He took the scriving concept and created a very imaginative story with compelling charact
Sep 05, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
4.5 stars

This book was so much goddamn fun, I can't even describe....

but I will try.

Sancia Grado is about to take on the biggest job of her life. The details: steal a small box, contents unknown, from a safe in the warehouse on the Tevanni waterfront guarded by the Waterwatch, return it to her fence, Sark, and get paid serious paper money by an undisclosed, but very rich, patron. For Sancia, this job means the kind of cash to fix herself, to make herself normal. Maybe even enough to get out of t
Iryna *Book and Sword*
Aug 11, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: urban fantasy lovers
4/5 stars

I have to admit, I was beyond ecstatic when I got approved for an ARC of this. I've seen it circulating on Goodreads prior and once I read the description I was SOLD! Well, if you know me then you know that anything that has "thief" in it sells me basically. I just love my grey characters!

But Sancia is much more than just a thief. Sancia is different, and I don't mean it in the "ohhh I'm so pretty but I think I'm so ugly special snowflake character" way - these should be outlawed by t
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Goodreads Librari...: This topic has been closed to new comments. Please combine 4 16 Oct 28, 2020 02:13AM  
Robin & Kelsey: Halfway Deadline 1 2 Sep 03, 2020 11:25AM  

Readers also enjoyed

  • Jade City (The Green Bone Saga, #1)
  • Gideon the Ninth (The Locked Tomb, #1)
  • A Deadly Education (The Scholomance, #1)
  • The Poppy War (The Poppy War, #1)
  • A Memory Called Empire (Teixcalaan #1)
  • Harrow the Ninth (The Locked Tomb, #2)
  • Black Sun (Between Earth and Sky, #1)
  • Rhythm of War (The Stormlight Archive, #4)
  • The Bone Shard Daughter (The Drowning Empire, #1)
  • The City of Brass (The Daevabad Trilogy, #1)
  • The Kingdom of Copper (The Daevabad Trilogy, #2)
  • The Rage of Dragons (The Burning, #1)
  • The Dragon Republic (The Poppy War, #2)
  • Starsight (Skyward, #2)
  • The Empire of Gold (Daevabad Trilogy, #3)
  • The Burning God (The Poppy War, #3)
  • Jade War (The Green Bone Saga, #2)
  • Artificial Condition (The Murderbot Diaries, #2)
See similar books…
Robert Jackson Bennett is a two-time award winner of the Shirley Jackson Award for Best Novel, an Edgar Award winner for Best Paperback Original, and is also the 2010 recipient of the Sydney J Bounds Award for Best Newcomer, and a Philip K Dick Award Citation of Excellence. City of Stairs was shortlisted for the Locus Award and the World Fantasy Award. City of Blades was a finalist for the 2015 Wo ...more

Other books in the series

The Founders Trilogy (3 books)
  • Shorefall (The Founders Trilogy, #2)
  • Untitled (The Founders Trilogy, #3)

Articles featuring this book

Science fiction and fantasy have spawned some of the most imaginative plots and settings in existence. Makes sense, given that these genres are...
255 likes · 102 comments
“All things have a value. Sometimes the value is paid in coin. Other times, it is paid in time and sweat. And finally, sometimes it is paid in blood.

Humanity seems most eager to use this latter currency. And we never note how much of it we’re spending, unless it happens to be our own.”
“Every innovation—technological, sociological, or otherwise—begins as a crusade, organizes itself into a practical business, and then, over time, degrades into common exploitation.” 12 likes
More quotes…