The Ravens of Death: Tsun-Tsun TzimTzum, Book 4 Audible Audiobook – Unabridged
My name's Noah Kilmartin. I'm from Ruddock, Ohio, and I'm getting pretty dang qualified to save the universe from the slavering demonic hordes of the super evil bitch Queen Lilith.
All I've got to do is survive the penultimate sphere before Malkuth. One last hellscape that will test my companions and I, seek to turn us against each other, and shatter the certainties that bind us together.
I know our love is true. I know our bonds will hold. That nothing Lilith can throw against us will prevail.
I have to believe it. Because the alternative is too horrifying to contemplate....
Warning and minor spoilers: The Ravens of Death is an 18+ audiobook intended for mature listeners. It contains graphic sex and copious amounts of medieval violence.
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|Listening Length||23 hours and 51 minutes|
|Audible.com Release Date||December 25, 2020|
|Best Sellers Rank|| #42,489 in Audible Books & Originals (See Top 100 in Audible Books & Originals) |
#1,717 in Horror Fiction
#1,895 in Epic Fantasy (Audible Books & Originals)
#2,819 in Dark Fantasy
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I don't want to be too specific about the book (so as to preserve the surprises), but I appreciate Mike's repeated emphases on the importance of intellect and wit. Previous Saviors have been stronger, more experienced, etc., but they failed (for various reasons). It is only through the shared bonds - and their clever applications - that Noah can succeed. He still makes mistakes, but they're different mistakes, for the most part.
Lastly, I quite like the system of magic Mike has developed, as well as his adherence to the Kabbalah-esque elements, which differentiates the series. Some characters are skilled in only one area of magic, some are (seemingly) skilled in everything. The power-ups (such as they are) are also reasonably interspersed, and they are not an endless stream of Deus Ex Machinas, conveniently saving the protagonist whenever things turn difficult.
I maintain that this series has demonstrably improved with each iteration, and "The Ravens of Death" has not disappointed me. I look forward to the final book, which will surely bring a worthwhile conclusion to a most enjoyable series.
Where i feel like it falls a bit off the rails (only a bit) is there are a few scenes that, for lack of a better term, jump the shark. In an effort to make every battle ever more spectacular and difficult, the author has started to setup scenarios where even in a magical world, it just doesn't make any sense, enough so that instead of enjoying what is occurring as a reader, i'm scratching my head and focusing on how this just doesn't seem coherent or make sense. (particularly the warp boat and statue battles)
I'm all for where this series is headed, but i think it needs to be tempered. Every fight doesn't have to be better than the last. They just need to be unique, regardless of how intense that may be.
the best harem adventure I have ever encountered, and *no*, that is not
qualified praise in this case -- this series is one of the best fantasy
series I have read in the last few years, full stop.
Chosen, seemingly by random chance, from Earth to be the tenth
"Savior" in the both deadly real and partially metaphysical fight
to save the Univese & forces of the Source from the corruption and
evil of the part force-of-nature, and part embodied evil of "Lilith",
Noah Kilmartin and his battle harem are coming to the end of their
struggle. Having fought their way across three other corrupted
spheres, they have now arrived at the penultimate sphere on their
Unfortunately, defeating the terrors of the Manifold immediately preceding
their arrival has taken its toll on the team, and has left Noah and all
his companions with their own mental scars while Ur-Gharab is the first
sphere totally populated by the high-level followers of Lilith rather than
having just a few salted in as leaders of the local forces. Finding
themselves immediately outclassed, they find themselves forced into
a pointless side-quest which they must complete before being able to move
on, despite Imogen's warning that the corrupted nature of the sphere is
all about fighting futile battles. In fact they learn that the only other
savior able to move on from Ur-Gharab was so weakened by the fruitless
squandering of his party's strength that he immediately failed on arriving
at the final sphere. Noah knows all that, yet there does not seem to be
any way out of the diversion, and in the meantime the forces of doubt and
decay are working on his first companion just when he, and the team
needs her most, and his most powerful ally has completely left the harem
lest she destroy it from within..
There is so much going on here, and things are so grim that Truk almost
forgets to put in any sex, but in the event that he does put in works
pretty well, and indeed goes a long way to erase our suspicions about
a particular hanger-on character. I am guessing the other main such
scene will also have repercussions of the emotional blackmail sort as the
team readies for the final confrontation in book 5.
Seriously, these are excellent books. Yes, it's very genre, but so
are, say, "Western" or "Noir", and yes you do have to have a tolerance
for sex -- maybe it's not for your maiden aunt. Otherwise: enjoy!