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The Raven Tower

4.07  ·  Rating details ·  1,148 ratings  ·  267 reviews
Gods meddle in the fates of men, men play with the fates of gods, and a pretender must be cast down from the throne in this breathtaking first fantasy novel from Ann Leckie, New York Times bestselling author and winner of the Hugo, Nebula, and Arthur C. Clarke Awards.

For centuries, the kingdom of Iraden has been protected by the god known as the Raven. He watches over
Kindle Edition, 432 pages
Published February 26th 2019 by Orbit
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Erik Nossborn Sometimes it's as Trish says, but sometimes it's just people who love the author and expect to love the book, and want to give it good press before…moreSometimes it's as Trish says, but sometimes it's just people who love the author and expect to love the book, and want to give it good press before it's released (sometimes by writing a "review" about how excited they are to read it in the future). Or, of course, the opposite, that they dislike the author and want to give it a low score despite knowing nothing about the book itself.(less)
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4.07  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,148 ratings  ·  267 reviews

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i had high hopes for this book. leckie’s imperial radch trilogy has been so celebrated by the SF kids that even i wanted to read it, and SF books have always had very limited appeal to me. when i heard she was doing a fantasy novel this time out, i figured that would be a more suitable entry point to her work for me, as i am *marginally* more qualified to assess fantasy than SF.

and maybe it would have been, but this was actually my SECOND fantasy novel of the month,
Holy sh*t, y'all. And let me repeat: holy sh*t.

I have to start this review with how I heard about this book. I had the amazing opportunity to meet with Ann Leckie twice during SIBA18, both during the Rise of Alt SFF panel and again during the moveable feast of authors, where she had 90 seconds to tell my table about her first foray into fantasy. I loved the way she summarized her book and I have no doubt her synopsis will sound way, way better than anything I could pen, so I'm going to unapologe
Jan 26, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 5000-2019
I rushed to Netgalley to get hold of an advance copy of this book based on how much I enjoyed Leckie's science fiction series. The Raven Tower is fantasy which I also love, but somehow this one just missed the mark for me.

Of course the writing is good and as usual for this author it is presented in an unusual way. Very unusual actually since the narrator is a rock who is also a god. This god spends a large part of the book philosophising on anything and everything as to be expected since he does
Feb 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019-shelf, fantasy
Cue up Simon and Garfunkle for this ride. Just a single song on endless repeat.

"Don't talk of love,
Well, I've heard the word before.
It's sleeping in my memory;
And I won't disturb the slumber
Of feelings that I've died.
if I never loved, I never would have cried.
I am a rock. I am an island."

Now make a novel of a god of a single rock, surround him with endless time, sleep, and other gods getting by or rising into a WWI assemblage of alliances and obligations, always keeping out of the fray.

Mogsy (MMOGC)
2 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum

I am but a simple reader, with simple tastes. I can appreciate when an author tries different things, or when a novel tries to break out of its genre and stylistic norms. But at the end of the day, all I want to do is read a good story I can relate to and, above all else, enjoy. Which, unfortunately, was not The Raven Tower.

Thing is, this novel does in fact contain a fascinating premise: in a prosperous kingdom named Irade
Bob Milne
Here is a story I have heard.

It is a story that is easy to admire, to appreciate, to acknowledge as something wholly unique within the fantasy genre, and yet it is a difficult one to enjoy. You likely have never read a story quite like it, and whether you would like to read another is probably what will divide the fans from the frustrated.

Here is another story I have heard.

It is a story that is technically impressive, told with an unusual point-of-view, and through an original voice. You, for al
Mar 14, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ppb, 2019, fantasy
I found The Raven Tower to be both conceptually intriguing and boring.

I wonder if my general indifference to the novel has to do with the fact that this story's narrator is a rock. A rock that is a god, but still a rock that likes to just exist. Or be rolled around by someone.

The most compelling part of this novel, for me, was the concept of gods and how they interact with and are nurtured by humans. I thought it was quite interesting how Leckie had weaved the history of the world with the dev
Nils | nilsreviewsit
After hearing such praise for Ann Leckie’s Ancillary Justice series, but having never read it myself, I was really excited to try her fantasy debut, The Raven Tower. The premise sounded just my kind of story; I mean the idea of a Raven god and a Raven’s Lease who’s duty is to sacrifice themselves when the Raven god dies, sounded like a bloody good fantasy read! Plus the characters were proposed to be extremely diverse. However... this book just wasn’t for me.
At first I did like the unique narra
Oct 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Ann Leckie seems to enjoy writing books in which the main characters are big, sentient objects.

I'm a bookseller who received an advance reader copy of the book after having the pleasure of meeting Ann at the SIBA Discovery Show. I was extremely excited about the work, having been a fan of "Ancillary Justice."

Well, "The Raven Tower" lived up to my lofty expectations! Like the Ancillary Trilogy, this work showcases Ann's incredible skill for building fantastical realms. The central trope is a sort
Actual rating: 2.5 stars

You can find this review on my blog with my choice of music.

I've got an ARC from Orbit in exchange of an honest review.

Ever since I laid eyes on the cover and the blurb, I knew I had to read The Raven Tower by Ann Leckie. I was kind of obsessed with it and couldn’t wait to get my hands on one. Which I did over Christmas and was so happy that I just hugged it to my chest (ask James). So you can imagine how hyped I was when I could finally crack it open. I also have to ment
Liz Barnsley
Nov 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Here is a story I’ve heard…
Ann Leckie has written a highly absorbing, beautifully imagined fantasy novel, with a quirky, atmospheric and highly engaging character voice…
I probably didn’t need to take the third party precautionary measure because I believe this to be true, but care in all things, especially when you pick up The Raven Tower because it will deprive you of sleep and leave you longing for more.
In a world where God’s and human’s intertwine, a God cannot speak false. One God tells the
Adah Udechukwu
Feb 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Raven Tower seemed weird at first. The first 30 or so pages had me confused but soon the novel picked up. It started making a lot of sense. I loved the world building. I loved the characters. The entire concept of the novel was fascinating and oddly compelling.
Holly (The Grimdragon)
"There will be a reckoning."

This.. is a DNF for me. I tried. I really did. I made it to page 137 and just.. I couldn't go on.

You know I believe in being completely honest in my reviews. Whelp.. The Raven Tower will probably tick the boxes for most people, but that just wasn't the case for me. At all. Clearly.

I was pleasantly surprised to have received this. When I first opened it up, I couldn't get over the gorgeous cover, the beautifully detailed pages in the front and the map. HELLO. What read
Cathy (cathepsut)
Mar 10, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Cathy (cathepsut) by: Leckie-fans, even if fantasy is not your thing
Shelves: fantasy, read-2019
Unusual second-person narrative. A little odd at first, but it grew on me. Strange that a main character does not have an inner voice.

The book alternates between two stories. There is the present day plot and a back story. I don‘t want to give too much away, I think it is more fun not too know going in. For a long while I suspected that the main narrator was leading us astray. I wasn‘t quite sure, who the narrator really is. Again, I don‘t want to give too much away...

“What is it that makes lang
The Captain
Mar 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Ahoy there mateys! I absolutely adore this author’s work and love, love, love her Imperial Radch books. The first book of the trilogy is one of me favourite books of all time. To say I was excited about this newest book was an understatement. And it delivered.

Now to be fair, I think readers are going to have a harder time with this book due to the fact it is written in second person and meanders quite a bit. But I trusted that Leckie’s journey would lead to satisfaction in the end. And it sooo w
Feb 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It's been a while since I stayed up late to finish a book on the day it came out, but I couldn't put this one down. I went into it not knowing anything more than the blurb, and knowing I'd enjoyed Leckie's previous novels a great deal, and I couldn't put it down.

I don't have much to say about the plot, but the story structure- echoing the parallel plot lines of Ancillary Justice without feeling derivative- and narration- a narrator not as much typically unreliable as one who openly hedges and ma
Jan 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Oh how I love fantasy novels about GODS and the nature of DIVINITY and oh HOW THIS BOOK DELIVERED.
Mar 09, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, 7k-challenge
I’m giving it three stars and splitting it down the middle because I didn’t really give it a fair shake. I skipped large chunks of this book.

Do you want to hear the story of a billion year old rock god that does nothing but sit on a hill and watch the world go by?

Well I sure didn’t.

There are two ways to get me to love a book.

1. Tell me a good story. Twists and turns, betrayals and deceptions, horror after horror. Tell me a good story. This is why I picked the book up. This is what I wanted.

Dec 02, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a funny little story. More Ancillary than Provenance, but I found myself wanting more plot. There is a lot of Hamlet here, complete with Rosencrantz and Guildenstern.

I love the narrator, but it almost feels like this started as short fiction about the Strength and Patience and then she's added a story to fill it out.

I'm curious to see how this lands with the rest of the fantasy/spec fic world, because I could really see it going either way. But I'll end by saying that I really love tha
 Charlie - A Reading Machine
I made every effort to adapt to the incredibly unique viewpoint in which, essentially, you are the main character and have lost your memory and someone is explaining everything that happened to you as though they were there watching you but I could not. I don't mind being challenged by story, characters, concepts but being unable to reconcile the viewpoint is about as interesting as struggling with the font type. A book for more experimental, patient and exploratory minded readers than myself.

Rating: 3.5/5 Stars

Thanks to Paola Crespo and the lovely people over at Orbit for an advanced reading copy of The Raven Tower by Ann Leckie in exchange for an honest review. Receiving this ARC did not influence my thoughts or opinions on the novel.


For centuries, the kingdom of Iraden has been protected by the god known as the Raven. He watches over his territory from atop a tower in the powerful port of Vastai. His will is enacted through the Raven’s Lease, a human ruler chosen by the go
Mar 16, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Longer review later, maybe. For now:
1. I really liked it!
2. Audio highly recommended - it's very good and this is a "let me tell you a story" sort of book, so listening works well.
Maybe not even 3 stars but Leckie gets some extra points.

Sadly this story was just uninteresting. I didn’t mind the narrator and I liked Eolo. The ponderous slowness of the stone’s story might be appropriate for the voice of a large stone, but it was boring. Sigh
Britta Böhler
Not quite what I had expected but I enjoyed it nevertheless.
Mar 04, 2019 rated it really liked it
Good proper stuff. An engrossing and engaging read. Leckie is a wonderful story teller.

Also, this is a bit of masterly authorly versimilitude. I bet Leckie said to herself, “I wonder if I could....” and she did.
Sarah (CoolCurryBooks)
The Raven Tower is bound to be one of the most phenomenal fantasy novels of 2019. If you’re not familiar with Ann Leckie’s work, her science fiction series (starting with Ancillary Justice) swept the award season when it debuted. WIth The Raven Tower, she turns her hand to fantasy, and the result is wonderful. I feel like this book would appeal to fans of N.K. Jemisin… but if you’ve read Jemisin, you’ve likely already read Leckie! Regardless, this is a novel you need to pick up.

Gods interfere di
Esmerelda Weatherwax
I have no idea how I'm going to rate this. I barely made it through because I bounced so hard off the second person writing. I wasn't able to connect with it - but it's a very different approach accompanied by a very unique style, and if you're interested I think it's worth picking up.


Longer review to come.
Jan 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019-release
Oh my god I am obsessed with this. A masterful fantasy novel which is a mystery novel about politics and deep history and... religion, kind of, and. It’s beautiful and lyrical and surprising and queer and full of characters I love and characters I hate. In the best way.
Tucker (TuckerTheReader)
Dec 06, 2018 marked it as not-released-tbr  ·  review of another edition
More ravens... Why am I not surprised?
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“And you turned fully to stare at your hand against the wall, and then down at your feet, feeling that constant, faint, grinding vibration traveling through the yellowish stones. Could you hear me, Eolo? Can you hear me now? I’m talking to you.” 0 likes
“I found myself atop one of these. And I began to wonder why that was. I ought to have been pressed flat as everything else had been, trapped under the glacier or buried under the debris that had accumulated on its surface over so very long. But I had not. I had stayed above the ice, and now I sat on this new, rounded hill surrounded by rolling, treeless, grass-covered plain.” 0 likes
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