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The Invisible Ring

(The Black Jewels #4)

4.07  ·  Rating details ·  12,947 ratings  ·  332 reviews
A prequel set in the "dark and sensual world" (11th Hour) of the national bestselling Black Jewels Trilogy.

Jared is a Red-Jeweled Warlord bound as a pleasure slave by the Ring of Obedience. After suffering nine years of torment as a slave, he murdered his owner and escaped -- only to be caught and sold into slavery once again. The notorious queen who has purchased him,
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Kindle Edition, 388 pages
Published June 3rd 2008 by Roc Trade (first published October 1st 2000)
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Average rating 4.07  · 
Rating details
 ·  12,947 ratings  ·  332 reviews


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Robin (Bridge Four)
There is a huge gear shift in this book as it is a prequel to the events in the first trilogy of the series. I actually wasn’t really excited to read it as I loved the characters from those books so much. But once you get past that the story in The Invisible Ring flows really well and again it was difficult to put the book down. The few cameos we get from The Sadist were just enough to add to the story but not take it over and show some of the little ways he rebelled against Dorthae long before ...more
Dianne
Feb 09, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: re-read, read-2018, 2019
I can understand why this book can be considered and is being touted as a 'prequel' to the Black Jewels trilogy. Jaenelle hasn't even been born yet and this book takes place many years before she will be born. But it should never have been advertised as such in my opinion.

What is most important about this book is that it should have been called the prequel to The Shadow Queen and Shalador's Lady. It is the book that explains everything about the character's relatives, Greyhaven's past and leads
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Sarah
Oct 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
I have to admit I was a little disappointed when I realised that The Invisible Ring is actually a prequel to the first 3 books in the Black Jewels series and is about a whole new set of characters that I don't remember being mentioned previously. I was excited to be back in this world but I love Jaenelle, Daemon, Lucivar and Saetan so much and was sad we weren't getting to spend more time with them. Having said that I still found myself really enjoying this story and we do get a few glimpses of ...more
Debrac2014
Good story line! We meet the Gray Lady who found a way to repel Dorothea! I was happy to see Daemon pulling strings!
Dianne
Sep 26, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I can understand why this book can be considered and is being touted as a 'prequel' to the Black Jewels trilogy. Jaenelle hasn't even been born yet and this book takes place many years before she will be born. But it should never have been advertised as such in my opinion.

What is most important about this book is that it should have been called the prequel to The Shadow QueenandShalador's Lady. It is the book that explains everything about the character's relatives, Greyhaven's past and leads up
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Gardavson
Wonderful read. I have come to love the world Bishop has created. It took a bit to fully understand it, but I now love it. The characters in this book were great. Bishop has a way of creating a main character but still giving great value to her support characters. I loved the characters, main and support. The hero was great. Bishop did a wonderful job of taking a more average abled guy and making him a fantasizable hero. It's not hard to fall in love with a hero who is the best and greatest and ...more
Kerry
Apr 29, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, reread, 10, 2009, 9, ebooks, 2007
ORIGINAL READ: 12 August, 2007 to 15 August, 2007 (9/10)

Jared, who has murdered his owner and attempted escape, is recaptured and sold to the mysterious Gray Lady. It soon becomes clear that Jared's new queen is not what she seems to be, and he joins with his fellow slaves--all of whom hide their own secrets--to protect the Gray Lady. During her desperate flight from Dorothea SaDiablo, the Black Widow intent on destroying her and claiming her territory, Jared comes to terms with his own demons
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Sarah
Jan 30, 2009 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Good book as a stand-alone, but I was a little disappointed when I found that the main characters of the trilogy were missing.
Sarah
Jun 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Invisible Ring by Anne Bishop
This book is labelled at book four in Black Jewels series but actually is a prequel to the arrival of Jaenelle.
This book is based on a Red Jewelled Prince Jared who at a young age was forced to wear the Ring of Obedience and sold as a pleasure slave. On his journey he meet Daemon in a court and he shows him everything he needs to know about being a pleasure slave.
Jared is put into the slave auction after killing the Queen that owned him but also mistreated
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JG (The Introverted Reader)
Jared is one of the more powerful members of the Blood, the vaguely aristocratic magic-wielding rulers of the lands he lives in. After a life-alteringly bad choice in his teens, Jared has become a pleasure slave for the Queens and Witches of Hayll. After nine years of bowing to sadistic whims, he does something that has him headed for a short, brutal life in the salt mines unless some fool decides to buy him at the semi-annual slave market.

Enter The Gray Lady. She is one of the few Queens that
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Alison Diem
Nov 19, 2009 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: any one who liked the first 3 Black Jewel novels
Shelves: romance, fantasy
The first three novels of the Black Jewels series really tear at me. On the one hand, I really liked some of the characters and found the world hard to look away from. On the other hand, I felt that the politics were ridiculous and difficult to really understand. On top of all that, the fact that certain races live for thousands upon thousands of years made it difficult to really connect with.

This novel, however, fared a lot better in my mind because the author expects that the reader already
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Melissa
Mar 25, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
This book was the first of Bishop's that I had difficulty getting into. The main character and narrator, Jared, is interesting enough, but he doesn't pull you in as some of the other characters Bishop has created. Also, there wasn't much action, and it left you wanting to know what happened. The readers, or at least I, wanted to know how Lia and Jared's love blossomed in the court.

SPOILER ALERT: Also, the premise of Sadi owing the Grayhaven line anything in the 8th and 9th books makes no sense
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Crys
Apr 26, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
First of all, let me say, I didn't want to read this book yet. I had just finished book 3, and I was so caught up with finding out what happens next, I just wanted to keep going, and come back to this book later. I am so glad I didn't! If you loved the Chronicles of Narnia as a child, then when I say this reminded me of 'The Horse and His Boy', you'll get it. It's a side-step from the main story-line, and happens at an earlier time from where the last book left us, but gives us glimpses of some ...more
Christina
Apr 23, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, 2008-reads
I don't really know what to say about this book, except kdjgskghskhskjghs I'm such an idiot for putting off reading it for so long! I think because it revolved around different characters to the original Black Jewels trilogy, which always makes me sceptical, that I just instantly decided it wasn't going to interest me. But no, I adored this.

I'm not gonna lie, I squealed hard every time Daemon appeared. "She hasn't been born yet. But I've loved, and served, her all my life. I'll love no other.
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CupcakeBlonde
This is a great companion book to The Black Jewels trilogy. We get to see a bit of the life in the Realm before Jaenelle is born. I really liked seeing Daemon show up in this book and give "advice" if that is what you want ot call it. Jared and Leah are get leading characters and Theyra and Blade provide great comic relief with their bickering. I love putting strong female characters against strong male characters that just want to protect each other. Provides for a great dynamic and contrast. ...more
Kir
Aug 28, 2010 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This was the first Anne Bishop novel I've picked up, and I think it's also going to be my last. The beginning was promising, but I found the very complicated 'jewel' and 'blood' rankings mentioned to clarify different characters relationships throughout the book to be distracting. These caste relationships soon took over the plot of the book and the pace became plodding. Eventually I gave up and started skipping whole sections of the book in an effort to continue on with the initial plotline. ...more
Lindig
Apr 13, 2010 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
First Anne Bishop book I've read. After reading the first 100 pages, I began skipping 30 pages at a time. While I thought her voice was well done, the plot itself was fairly familiar, and her gender politics were annoying and patriarchal. After all, women were "hysterical" at lot, especially at their "moontime," and were yelled at by the men a lot. And the men "served" their ladies by yelling and getting their own way by force.
♆ BookAddict  ✒ La Crimson Femme
I read these books out of order. This is my first book from Ms. Bishop. This world she creates is intriguing. I am kind of amused with her cock ring into a controlling device in a CBT way. This is unexpected. This story is the underdog fighting against a corrupt government. There are rebel forces who still stand for good. I love these stories because it tickles my particular fancy. I'm intrigued enough to read the first three to see how I those go. I've heard so much about them.
Andrew Mowere
Sep 29, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This and Necromance by Gisele walko are the only romance books I have ever been able to get into, period. Not the only sensual erotica books. Only romance. This one stuck in my head so much that all these years later, I still go back from time to time just to read some of Daemon Sadi's quotes. There's intrigue, mystery, magic, and struggle for the greater good all in a setting that teaches us cynicism can only ever fall short against kindness and love.
Ben
Jun 13, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Interesting book. Takes place between time period of the previous books, making it more of a filler story than not. I enjoyed getting to see some more of the conditions of the world before Jaenelle's influence. I hope that some of these characters are carried through to other stories, so that this feels less like a filler novel. Still very enjoyable.
K
Re-read Dec 2015: Reading it right after the original trilogy there are definitely some places where the writing seems rough. Still, points for being a whole Black Jewels plot in one book; sometimes you just don't have time for an epic re-read.
Leyoh
Apr 19, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I liked this book the least out of the series although it was a good stop gap and features Daemon briefly...Swoon. I ready to launch back into this series which features very highly in my all time favourites.
keikii Eats Books
64 points/100 (3.25 stars/5).

Set a few hundred years before the events of the trilogy, Jared is a pleasure slave trained by Daemon but killed a Queen and is about to be shipped off to the salt mines. However, he gets bought by the Grey Lady (brought up briefly in the trilogy) and they have to make the journey back to her territory.

I went into this book knowing this was a prequel novel so I went in prepared. However, I was still incredibly disappointed with this book. Sure, it was because it was
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Bob
It’s been 20 years since I last ventured into the realm of Black Jewels. Two decades during which I aged (reluctantly) and matured (gracefully) into the kind of man who holds a whole new fascination with and appreciation for the world that Anne Bishop has created. Were there not 6 books waiting for me, with a new book – The Queen’s Bargain – coming next March, I would love to go back and revisit that opening trilogy, but if I have any hope of catching up before Spring, I must continue forward.

On
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Kathy Martin
Jan 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a prequel to the Black Jewels trilogy. Because some of the characters come from long-lived races, there are a couple of characters who appear in the first trilogy. The villain of this piece is Black Widow and Priestess Dorothea SaDiablo who is also the villain of the first trilogy.

In this one, we see Dorothea's plots and plans as she tries to eliminate any woman of the Blood who might rival her strength and encourage those women who share her views. She is spreading her corrupt version
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goodreadingholly
Jun 14, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was so excited to continue reading about the world of the black jewels, but all too soon realised, I wasn't ready to leave our last characters behind. The original trilogy is one of the best trilogies I have ever read, and it was so hard to imagine a book without those characters in it stacking up. Fortunately, I quickly got over this, thanks to Bishop's ability to immediately make you interested in a character. The first introductions of Jared and the Grey Lady were so intriguing, I found ...more
Surreal
Although technically a prequel to the events in The Black Jewels trilogy, this story make far more sense reading afterwards, not just because by this time we are familiar with The Black Jewels world, but also because it is a true prequel to The Shadow Queen and Shalador's Lady. Jared's story is referenced in Queen of the Darkness, and is the key to Janaelle's solution for cleansing the taint from the Blood, here we see the story played out in full gory, grisly detail. And, Daemon has a cameo ...more
Alice
Jan 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing
A favorite

I would start the Black Jewels Series with this book as it predates the trilogy and has a important impact on the resolution that's later reached. Saying that, the book is easily read as a standalone. It's one of my favorites and the world it creates is unique and brilliant. The magic system based on jewels which reflect the power level of the wearer, and the long and short lived races, the Bloods, Witches and Queens all come together to create a very different culture. One of my
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Tabatha Carruthers
This book isn't actually no. 4. It should technically be no. 1. It takes place before the other Black Jewels books. Its also X-rated. Basically, (view spoiler) If you read the spoiler, you'll understand why I said X-rated.
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Goodreads Librari...: Change description 2 13 Apr 24, 2016 12:44PM  

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8,267 followers
Anne Bishop lives in upstate New York where she enjoys gardening, music, and writing dark, romantic stories. She is the author of over twenty novels, including the award-winning Black Jewels Trilogy. She has written a new series, the Others, which is an urban dark fantasy with a bit of a twist.

Crawford Award (2000)




Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the GoodReads database with this
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Other books in the series

The Black Jewels (10 books)
  • Daughter of the Blood (The Black Jewels, #1)
  • Heir to the Shadows (The Black Jewels, #2)
  • Queen of the Darkness (The Black Jewels, #3)
  • Dreams Made Flesh (The Black Jewels, #5)
  • Tangled Webs (The Black Jewels, #6)
  • The Shadow Queen (The Black Jewels, #7)
  • Shalador's Lady (The Black Jewels, #8)
  • Twilight's Dawn (The Black Jewels, #9)
  • The Queen's Bargain (The Black Jewels #10)
“Thera started sputtering. "You fool. You idiot." She stopped because Blaethe's response was much pithier and far more creative. She nodded approvingly. "What he said.” 8 likes
“You’re a virgin. Hell’s fire, Mother Night, and may the Darkness be merciful, you’re a virgin.” Still clutching the coat, she eyed him warily. “There’s no reason to get hysterical. It’s not contagious.” Jared” 2 likes
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