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Vultures (Shadow Twins #1)

4.11  ·  Rating details ·  44 ratings  ·  32 reviews
An enemy slain is not a conflict won...

After decades of war the demon Te Mirkvahíl is dead. But its progeny endure, spilling from the Heart of Mirkúr, sowing death across the land of Ariath. If the people are to finally know peace, the Heart must be destroyed. Theailys An believes he can do just that with The Keepers' Wrath, an infamous power focus wrought in Ariath's yest
Paperback, 344 pages
Published May 28th 2019 by
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Average rating 4.11  · 
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Nick Borrelli
Dec 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I have to admit that I have been wracking my brain all weekend trying to figure out how to write a review of this book. Not because it's not a good book, mind you. It is! Rather more so because it feels like a dark fantasy version of a David Lynch movie, incorporating alternate timelines and realities that deliver a plot consisting of a healthy dose of philosophical theory. So can you see where I might have a hard time describing that in a review? Be that as it may, I will attempt to do just tha ...more
Nils | nilsreviewsit
Sep 01, 2019 rated it really liked it
‘We are on your doorstep, monster, and we will see your end. The light is darkest just before the dawn, and when we finally meet, it will be my blade that sets fire in your eyes and wipes you from this world.’

Vultures is a self-published debut novel by Luke Tarzian and is the first book in the Shadow Twins series. I was lucky enough to win this book in a giveaway on Twitter, hosted by Justine Bergman, and I’m so glad I got the opportunity to read this. I have to start by saying this is one of th
May 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Full review over at Fantasy Book Critic

The light is darkest just before the dawn.

In a world marred and preyed upon by demons, Theailys An has one goal, to reforge The Keepers' Wrath in order to end the demons' dominion over those struggling for survival. With divine intervention at every turn, an everlasting conflict between the wielders of illum and mirkúr, and a history that seems to repeat itself, Thaeilys must secure what's needed to bring peace to a land that has been plagued by a war of sh
Michael Sliter
Aug 28, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I’ve been on a self published kick, of late, for a few reasons. One. I want to support authors like myself. We’re in it together and all that. Two, the last two trad pub books I read (both finales) were huge letdowns. And three, I’ve been in the mood for something different. Luke Tarzian’s Vultures definitely delivers on being something different.

Backing up, I came across Luke’s writing in an anthology book called Dark Ends. I was immediately intrigued. His story was a dark and haunting tale tha
Jan 10, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own-the-book
I flew through this book! Luke writes so smoothly and rich~ The world is dark and ominous, infested with demons. There is dark/ Mirkur and light/Illum magic both with their own traits. You get to know characters one by one and how their paths are starting to cross. Something bigger pushing the strings. You feel it but it is not certain yet. And while you follow the characters all of them having their own inner demons to battle you find out there is a darker force. Something lurking and influenci ...more
Angela Boord
Jun 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
I really enjoyed Vultures, and the 4 stars rating is more like 4.25+. Very much recommended to those who like their fantasy poetic, literary, and philosophical, but still want all the classical fantasy magic and demon-fighting, too.

This is a very ethereal, dreamlike book, whose writing style only serves to heighten the strange world in which one is never sure whether the voices in the character's heads really exist or not. Half the suspense for me lay in trying to figure out what was actually go
C.W. Snyder
May 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Vultures begins in media res, and doesn’t let up from the beginning on. There’s an economy of storytelling here rarely seen in the genre, and it’s a welcome break from endless descriptions of journeys and feasts and banners. Character takes center stage here, the world introduced through their eyes, and though you’re thrown in with little reference, it makes sense as seen from their perspectives.

The story doesn’t spoon feed its readers, but hurtles from one location to another, mystery building
Lili  Marcus
It took me a while to get into the story primarily because I felt like in just a short time span, a lot of burdens have been thrown at me. But once I get into the story, I was immersed. The author has given me such a well-crafted tale that is surely not for the faint of heart. This is not a happy story. Humans are being slaughtered by corpses that only increase their numbers the more they kill. Sure, this is one of those light vs. dark stories, especially considering the characters, but vultures ...more
Justin Wallace
Dec 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Life isn’t just a collection of everything bright and clear and colorful.  There exists within all of us the deep truths of existence.  These truths drive us to excel, to create beautiful distractions, to shout into the empty void of the cosmos that we exist and that we matter.  In the end, the shadow cast by the flame of our lives is immutable;

One day those we love must die.

One day we must die.  

There are those among us, however, who have stared into the black abyss within and refused to despai
Madness is the perfect word to use when trying to describe Vultures. The madness of grief, the madness of loss, the madness of destruction, the madness of ambition … I could go on.

If, as hinted, time is an endlessly revolving wheel then madness is the hub around which everything turns, its bitter and twisted spokes lacerating the past, present, and future.

Vultures is gloriously ambitious, intricately plotted, and possibly the darkest fantasy book I have ever read. What is truly amazing here is t
Noah Garson
Aug 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
We all know transportation takes us from one place to another. Luke Tarzian’s debut novel, “Vultures” transports us to another world. A world we do not know but still feel. Tarzian’s writing grabs your attention at the start and holds its grip all the way through. His keen sense of characters is deep, keeping them vivid as you read. The story moves along as if the awe is happening while you’re reading.

Everyone in “Vultures” is struggling. Most have a demon within them and are struggling to keep
(Ellie) ReadtoRamble

I read this book for a blog tour, so thank you to the blog tour organiser and to the author for letting me take part in this tour and for providing me with a free copy of this book to read and review. All opinions are my own.

This was a really intriguing first book in a fantasy series, there are quite a few characters, points of view and different settings throughout this novel, and I have to admit that at times they did seem a little bit clunky to me. I really wanted to know more about
Gina R Mitchell
You would never guess this is Luke Tarzian’s debut novel. He has built an incredible fantasy world where good and evil are in a perpetual battle. His words pull you like a stream of smoke from one page to the next until you reach the end. I admit I was rushing so much by then that I had to read the ending twice to make sure I understood.

Dark fantasy is not my usual genre, but I am pleased to have read this book. It is about so much more than your typical good vs. evil story. I felt it described
I was kindly given a copy of this book to review for a blog tour in exchange for my honest opinion.

I thought that this book was incredible and really enjoyed the plot and the premise that it created for the next book (which I will have to get my hands on ASAP). The plot for this book had me both excited and anxious as the book raced towards the final climax and set up the second book. In fact it all ended very unexpectedly and that was something that I really enjoyed.

The characters were also ve
Lisas Books, Gems and Tarot
This book was so interesting to read. It is full of chaos and it is a story of shadow versus light.

It is depicted really well through the characters: it’s like they have a devil on one shoulder and an Angel on the other.

The main character, Theailys An is an excellent example of shadow vs. light. Quite often, his shadows take over and he is plunged into darkness. He awakens with no memory of what has happened or how he got to where he is.

Serece is the same: she is full of rage and this often take
Greg Wannier
Sep 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
I'll start this review by noting that Grimdark Fantasy is not, as a general rule, my preferred genre. For those who are unused to this particular style of book, it may take a chapter or two to get used to the language and brutality, and get into the meat of the story.

The good news, for those who do, is that the story itself is quite moving. At its heart is Theailys, a tortured man not in complete control of his own actions, and waging a desperate fight simultaneously against a grotesquely evil h
Jul 20, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wonderful, what a wonderful book. This may be the fastest I have ever read book as well, there is something about Luke's writing that pulls you in, something beautiful. I am so glad I have been able to read this, the blend of the fantasy with the metaphysical was wonderful. A full review will be on my blog soon, but thank you to Luke for creating the extraordinary world of Ariath and allowing us to be there.
Nancy Foster
Aug 14, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: spfbo
"Someday, somehow, in another time perhaps, this will all make sense."

I feel like this particular sentence in one of the final chapters really resonated the entire feel of this book. Now, it is obvious from the huge amassing of 5 stars that most people considered it to be fabulous.

Unfortunately, while I opened this book with an open mind without having read beforehand the reviews or plot, I don't read grimdark all that much and it can be a whole deal lot harder to enjoy a book that is well, very
Cassandra **The Bibliophagist**

As I mentioned above, this is not the type of book that would draw my attention. That is part of why I enjoy doing tours so much though.

The first thing I noticed is the classical fantasy-style the book felt it was written in. Not only that, there was also almost a poetic style to the writing which made the book very easy to read. I actually enjoyed this and truly did not expect to.

This story, like many of my favorites, is told from multiple POVs. The first is Thealily...his life goal is to eradi
Jenny Wannier
Jul 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A strong opening to a trilogy I can't wait to finish, dark fantasy at its best. A fast read at just over 300 pages, the story follows Theailys, Serece and Behtreal in a twisting journey where many things aren't what you'd expect. The novel is sparsely written, yet Tarzian manages to still vividly evoke his characters and setting with gorgeous prose and a strong self-deprecating humor throughout.

Set in a world fighting off what they hope is the end of a demon (lokyn) invasion, the characters are
Haley Renee The Caffeinated Reader

I really enjoyed Tarzian’s prequel for this series, so I was looking forward to this first book!

While I liked Tarzian’s writing style, it’s easy to read, I unfortunately found myself not enjoying the novel.

The storyline was muddled through all the characters, at times it seemed there were too many to keep up with and most of them were little to no consequence as the real players here were spirits/gods/entities that seemed to be in actual control. The time
Sifa Poulton
I received an eARC as part of a blog tour I'm no longer part of, in exchange for an honest review. It has not affected my opinions.

DNF at 37%

One of the major ideas in this book was a man living with a demon-thing (I suspect the what would have been revealed if I'd read on) inside him, and it causes him to black out - committing awful acts as he does. The dynamic with this voice in his head and the mystery of the black outs is what kept me reading.

I also really appreciated how unrepentantly broke
Oct 07, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this book for a blog tour, so a big thank you to the blog tour organiser I would never have heard of this book without him and also thanks to the author for providing me with a free copy of this book in return for my honest opinion.

So lets get straight to the point: If you are looking for something simple and straightforward move right along, because this one is not for you! If on the other hand you are looking for a complex multi layered, multi POV dark fantasy with alternative timelines
A Voracious Reader (a.k.a. Carol)
DNF @42%

Book source ~ Tour

The land of Ariath is suffering a plague. There are many characters trying to stop it. There’s a magical sword called The Keepers’ Wrath that’s supposed to be reforged so Ariath can go back to being normal. That’s it. That’s all I got.

There are so many characters in this and they have similar names. There are many places and they also have similar names. I have no idea how this plague started or even what kind it is. I’ve tried to work my way through this but at 42% I’m
Louise Wannier
Nov 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
It is difficult for me to read this genre as it can take time to settle and feel comfortable within worlds and language that are completely different from that which I inhabit. Yet, the author has created a world that brings you in and envelops you convincingly, even though what is reliable is unclear and in which we travel through shifting realities within the principal characters’ minds compelling us to keep reading, leaving us slightly off balance, and excited, awaiting the next volume.
Darren McGowan
Feb 01, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very entertaining

What a wonderful debut novel. Stunning imagination and well developed characters make this story Truely unique. Throw in a interesting magic system,gods, demons and a very cryptic way of telling a story . The author throws you into the middle of the story and let's you make sense of what's going on. Definitely requires a little thinking.
Joshua Newman
Nov 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2020-list
Amazing world building, not a cliche fantasy tale, intricate characters and a refreshing catalyst for conversations regarding themes other novels seldom address.
Oct 09, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I got this book as part of a blog tour. I’m a few days behind when I was supposed to review but life got in the way.

Luckily I settled down to this book and after a somewhat tricky start (this is definitely not a book you can half ass, you better pay attention!) I really started to get into it, and in the end I ended up really loving it.

We have a combination of epic world build and high overarching plot combined with characters that have their own personal smaller stakes. And it is all blended ve
E.D. Lazure
I did not really enjoy the book, primarily because of the characters' lack of depth. The two mains have a troubled past but their dark side results from a possession by gods and demons. It's difficult to be moved by a main character killing her sisters when we know it's not really her doing. In fact there is a such a plethora of gods pulling the strings that it undermines all sense of agency. And perhaps I am too old-school, but I don't think you need to drop dozens of f-bombs to define a charac ...more
Rowena Andrews
It took a little while for me to find my feet with this book, but once I did, I enjoyed it immensely and couldn't put it down. This is not a book for the fainthearted, and it is hard to follow in places because of the twists and turns, the crisscrossing of paths, but it works really well. A very dreamlike book, beautifully written, and my only real complaint is that at times it would have been nice to see the characters develop a little more, as there were times where it was difficult to connect ...more
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Fantasy Author. Long Doggo Enthusiast. Snoot Booper. Shouter of Profanities. Drinker of Whiskey. These are all titles. I’m the Khaleesi nobody wanted and the one they certainly didn’t deserve, but here we are.

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