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Cephrael's Hand

(A Pattern of Shadow & Light #1)

4.16  ·  Rating details ·  3,255 ratings  ·  323 reviews
"All things are formed of patterns..." And within the pattern of the realm of Alorin, three strands must cross: In Alorin... three hundred years after the genocidal Adept Wars, the realm is dying, and the blessed Adept race dies with it. One man holds the secret to reverting this decline: Bjorn van Gelderan, a dangerous and enigmatic man whose shocking betrayal three centu ...more
Paperback, 654 pages
Published September 22nd 2010 by Outskirts Press
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Todd Pund This series is very much based on love and friendship of all kinds. This first book has the first inklings of romance, but doesn't really cross into r…moreThis series is very much based on love and friendship of all kinds. This first book has the first inklings of romance, but doesn't really cross into romance territory. Once deeper into the series though, not only does it have romance, but a particular romance becomes one of the primary plotlines.(less)
This question contains spoilers… (view spoiler)
Tony It's not stated in the book. I think it simply refers to the idea that Ean and Creighton are childhood friends and trust and love each other as much a…moreIt's not stated in the book. I think it simply refers to the idea that Ean and Creighton are childhood friends and trust and love each other as much as they would trust their own family members.

Also, there is a very strong possibility that Creighton would some way be indentured to Ean as his prince.(less)

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Apr 06, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A solid read that I picked up purely based on the audible recommendation and one or two people mentioning it was good. It's a self-published read, but it feels well paced and although it starts off slow the drama and intensity builds once you know who's who.

This is the story of three vastly different people and what happens when their paths cross.

There is the old ancient race of the Adepts who are a slowly dying race with just Bjorn as the man who may somehow save them. Led by Raine, we are att
Dec 04, 2014 rated it liked it
I wanted to like this book, and in the beginning, I really did. And I suppose, I liked it more than I disliked it. The story had so much potential in the beginning, but ultimately, it succumbed to too many "deus ex machina" moments. These moments seemed to be added simply to have an "action" sequence. Examples include sudden evil lords of cities intervening for reasons that didn't serve the plot. A little over half-way through, the main characters (whose story lines all came together, for the mo ...more
Scott  Hitchcock

I generally hate when an ad for a book begins, fan of WOT, GOT, Stormlight Archives..........will love this book. Usually they're nothing like said iconic book of the genre. In this case however I think you like Wheel of Time you'll like this and if you don't then don't bother. Alyneri provides the braid pulling female you want to throttle.

The book has similarities to WOT but isn't in lockstep with it and definitely has a desert/Middle Eastern feel which I really liked. I also enjoyed s
Mark Halse
Jul 31, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Well if this wasn't a well written and entertaining epic fantasy story I just don't know what is. I've been reading a lot of indie fantasy books as of late and Cephreal's Hand is the crowning jewel of these.

Excellent world building, magic system, characters and story. This book is everything an epic fantasy book should be and well over 600 enjoyable pages!

There does seem to be way too many POV characters at times though and it can be a trifle overwhelming. There are three main POVs, six to nine
Raina {The LUV'NV}

Find the full review on The LUV'NV blog, here.

I am inspired and yet don't know where to start. Rarely do I come across a book that fills me with such zeal and I'm convinced the whole world needs to read it. I can count four. After reading Cephrael's Hand—no, after reading Cephrael's Hand and The Dagger of Adendigaeth , the first two books of A Pattern of Shadow & Light series, I can count six. Shocking, since I'm rather picky about Epic Fantasy.

Melissa McPhail created a world unlike any o
Apr 09, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy, maps, ebook
Good world building and story telling, but I never really cared about the main characters. Too much detail about too many minor characters. Also too many modern American cliches--knocks the reader out of the classical mood of the story. Not to mention the many arched eye brows and bit lower lips.

map in ebook edition useless.
Nov 21, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'm adding this warning as I read book 3 in the series as the series has taken a much darker tone than it began with. Do not get hooked on this series if reading scenes of torture / sexual violence are not something you are comfortable reading. It is not worse than what you would read in Game of Thrones. In retrospect, this series has moved much closer to George RR Martin with a touch of Michael J Sullivan.

Characters: 5*
Universe/World Building: 4.8*
Plot: 4.9*

Before I read this book, I ha
Geoffery Crescent
Oct 20, 2014 rated it did not like it
I was given a copy of this book in exchange for some promotion, which you can see over here --> http://sauteedpotatoesandonions.blogs... I couldn't actually finish the novel though. In the prologue the author mentions someone has dark blue eyes multiple times in TWO pages, which is a bit ridiculous. Then she quickly kills off someone who seems like they would have been a supporting character, probably to prove the book is, you know, gritty (bleaurgh....) or that the enemy are ruthless, but it se ...more
Brandon Lindsay
Feb 28, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read quite a bit and normally I read several books at once. When I started reading Cephrael's Hand, however, I had to put everything else aside until I found out how it all wrapped up.

Cephrael's Hand is a big book that takes place in big world, but it isn't overwhelming like certain other fantasy doorstoppers. Each character is likable and interesting, and each plot thread is connected to all the others--and thus actually matters. There are no wasted words or filler scenes. Even though it is a
Erin O'Roark
DNF @ 30%.

Sorry, you guys. I just couldn't get into it.
Aug 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy
(Reviewer's Note: I received a paperback copy of this book from the author, in exchange for an honest review.

This novel is an incredibly detailed tapestry of characters and events, laid out in a book of truly epic proportions. The various plots are like strands of elae, McPhail's name for the magical energy underlying the universe in her novel, and a totally unique concept in the fantasy genre.

Like a wielder of this energy, McPhail weaves these plots together to create a multi-faceted, yet unifi
Charline Ratcliff
May 10, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I always enjoy reading a good fantasy and even though my “free” time is limited and this book is a whopping six hundred and thirty-four pages I decided to read it. Just to let you know, “Cephrael’s Hand” is the first in the “A Pattern of Shadow & Light” series. In other words don’t expect this book and its tale to finish together and don’t expect to read it in one sitting…

So, there are three major parts interwoven throughout “Cephrael’s Hand.” First is the realm of Alorin. Alorin, and its Adept
Oct 26, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
so much arched eyebrow and biting of lower lip! like every other sentence. cool book worth reading. needs an editor who cares.
Shelby M. (Read and Find Out)
This series has a lot of potential (which I don't think it quite lived up to in the first book). The ending was solid and interesting, but I had a hard time getting through the middle. This mostly felt like the setup for a (potentially) great series. ...more
Katie Doyle
Jan 10, 2013 rated it really liked it
Originally, I was going to do this review as an interview with one of the characters, but life got in the way and there is no way I have time to do so. Which leaves the basic type of review. It’s just as fun though, especially when talking about this book!

First, a warning. It’s long. It’s about 654 pages long. BUT – and this is key – you don’t know it. Here’s a scenario:

You’re sitting in your favorite spot, warm and cozy with your pajamas on and a book in your hand. You read. And you read. And r
S.M. Blooding
Nov 20, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: paranormal
There were a lot of really GREAT things going on in this book! Seriously!

The setting, for me who absolutely LOVES setting, was spectacular!! I literally felt as though I’d been transported to this other world. There’s just so much political intrigue was in depth and fascinating. I love, love, loooooved the fact that it wasn’t written for easy reading. You really had to pay attention to what was going on in order to keep up with the happenings! There was so much lovely, lovely potential in this b
Nov 03, 2012 rated it it was ok
While I did enjoy the read, I was extremely disappointed in this book. To be fair, it was mainly because I had huge expectations.

My main criticism is the seemingly forced epicness of the story. Most of the plot is meaningless. You could cut whole plot lines and not miss much at all. One plot line that has no baring on the story, and last the whole book, is Trell's. It's a shame, because Trell was by far my favorite character. Yet, the story would be exactly the same if he was cut altogether from
Lukas Ott
Apr 24, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Favorite book I've read. Hands down-no questions asked. The story is intricately woven and yet never boring, it is exciting and fast-paced and keeps you glued to the pages as. This book is written for anyone who loves a good read but if you find that you enjoy a carefully, intelligently written story this is a book for you!:) ...more
Aug 16, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wow. That's all I can say. ...more
Oct 01, 2012 rated it really liked it
This review has been crossposted from my blog at The Cosy Dragon . Please head there for more in-depth reviews by me, which appear on a timely schedule.

I was upset that I was reading a ebook copy, as although I dutifully read the table at the beginning that detailed all of the characters and the various terms, I couldn't keep them all straight in my head when I started reading. Had this been a hard copy, I could have easily flicked back and forth. Nevertheless, the novel was very enjoyable - alt
Donna Parker
May 05, 2012 rated it really liked it
When I won this from The Goodreads First Read program and saw the size of it I admit, I was daunted. Then I started reading and was taken away to a fantastical land full of many interesting characters, places, and events. The journey is sweeping and not dumbed down, but don't let that intimidate you, it is worth learning all the names, places, etc. This does what great epic tomes do, take you away and make you like it. I can't wait for book two, I'm ready to go back. ...more
Apr 27, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was a great fantasy book! Can't wait for the next book to come out! ...more
Nov 29, 2011 rated it it was amazing
This book was good! No, it was better than good. As a matter of fact it was SUPERB! .... I cannot wait to start reading book 2 .... I am positive it will certainly not disappoint me.
Leelynn (Sometimes Leelynn Reads) ❤
Disclaimer: I received this audiobook as part of my participation in a blog tour with Audiobookworm Promotions. The tour is being sponsored by Podium Publishing. The gifting of this audiobook did not affect my opinion of it.

Okay I’m definitely a newbie to adult epic fantasy novels. They can be pretty dense and full of a lot of information that you need to pay attention to. It’s not an easy read, at least not for me. So it helped a lot that I was listening to this novel rather than reading it. So
Henrik Østergaard
its a 3.5 rating I rounded up in the hope that the potential this book started with will grow in the over the next couple of books in the series, hope it would have been a bit more fun!
my biggest frustrations in the book is the way, the characters think(or lack of) before they just rush to do something, or let people walk around alone, when they know, that they are wanted people of the enemy's. I don't really feel a connection to Ean! and more like Trell of the tides.
All over its a good book, wh
Sep 06, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
A few notes before I start. I am reviewing Cephrael's Hand but I have now finished all four books in the series. I did not, unlike so many others, receive a free copy of the book in order to write my review. I picked up the book through Audibles monthly credit and listened to Nick Poedhl's retelling. In fairness, I would listen to Nick read me last year's tax regulations and he is perhaps the only reason I got through all four books.

This is a story of editing and it highlights why it is so impor
Oct 31, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Posted originally at: Once Upon A Book

Note: I was given a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

Hello all, and welcome to my review of Cephrael’s Hand by Melissa McPhail. This has to be a close first for me, as this book has most certainly earned 5 stars. Absolutely, without question it has to be one of the best fantasy books I have read.

McPhail’s work can be likened to the classic works of Tolkien, or Jordan an epic universe with fantastic detail and obvious thoug
Melissa Haggerty
Aug 20, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I enjoy reading so many kinds of books. Epic Fantasies usually only make up a small part of my reading. I don't venture into that genre often. Still I was very interested to read Cephrael's Hand when I was asked. I like to branch out, and the synopsis of this book is intriguing. I was not disappointed at all.

Melissa McPhail has a gorgeous writing style that flows easily. She easily told this story from many points of view without it becoming confusing to the reader. She did an amazing job of tyi
Sep 10, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
I'm really not much for reviews but i felt like i ad to for this book..

Wow. One of the best reads of the year.

The story mainly focus's on Prince Ean returning home then embarking on his quest for vengeance against those who murdered is Friend/Brother, (Tedious) Trell of the Tides, who is adventuring all over trying to piece back together his forgotten past.

I honestly don't know where to start. This book has been sitting on my 'To Read' for ages,
i finally got around to reading it and suffered one
Linda Fast
May 12, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I received Cephrael's Hand for free through Goodreads First Reads and when the book arrived I was overwhelmed by the size of it. As I started to read, I thought to myself how am I ever going to get through this. I went back to the beginning of the book and reread the glossery of terms and the list of explanation of the people and where they fit in. I then continued to read and I still had my doubts and then the book seem to take a magical hold on my mind and I had to force myself to stop reading ...more
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Melissa McPhail is the author of the best-selling epic fantasy series A Pattern of Shadow & Light. She's the mother of twin girls who think boys in books are just better, and the adoptive mother to four very large cats who basically rule the roost; and while she can never leave the house in one attempt, she's pretty darn good at spinning a tale. She's also a classically trained pianist, violinist ...more

Other books in the series

A Pattern of Shadow & Light (5 books)
  • The Dagger of Adendigaeth (A Pattern of Shadow & Light, #2)
  • Paths of Alir (A Pattern of Shadow & Light, # 3)
  • Kingdom Blades (A Pattern of Shadow and Light, #4)
  • The Sixth Strand (A Pattern of Shadow & Light, #5)

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