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Wrath (The Faithful and the Fallen) Hardcover – November 17, 2016
The Amazon Book Review
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- Publisher : Tor Books; Main Market Ed. edition (November 17, 2016)
- Language : English
- ISBN-10 : 1447259688
- ISBN-13 : 978-1447259688
- Item Weight : 2.29 pounds
- Dimensions : 6.3 x 2.36 x 9.45 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #2,541,117 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
About the author
Top reviews from the United States
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1.) Describe people a little better. After the series ended I still don't really know what Edana looks like. There is virtually no talk about how she looks. Same with other characters.
2. ) Love stories were so weak. Yes, I know us guys like war and adventure, etc, but....for the love of God....interject a good love story in there. Give us more of their interaction.
3.) Add some grayness. The story and characters were VERY predictable (as other reviewers can attest to). Add some mistakes, or some grayness. Add some twists (Meical twist was forced). And Camlin could have been much better, but....he went from bad guy to golden perfect hero. Ugh.
I know this sounds like I should give it a 2 star review, but....for all those issues, I still enjoyed the very "typical" story. I look forward to more from this writer as he develops.
This entire series had me turning the page and kept me engaged throughout. I loved the build up and the plot and I would say overall this was a very good series.
I did find a few things frustrating..first, too many POV characters. I would rather have characters fleshed out more and the differing viewpoints narrowed. I didn't feel the characters ever got as fully fleshed out and real as they could have been. Then, as the book progressed more pov characters, (which almost made me close this last boo), that I could really care less about. Some of the characters and their back stories, motivations etc were so thin..I could care less and started speed reading those chapters in this book.
Now with that rather withering bit out of the way, what the author does excellent here is drive this story forward in such an engaging way that despite my lack of interest in some of the characters, the plot points and pacing kept me turning the page. Some of the main characters like Corban and Veradis were better fleshed out than others, I just wish I could have spent more time with them and..well like zero time with Rafe and a few others.
So if your into a page turning adventure, with lots of sword action and various plot points, I would recommend.
The characters in this book are archetypes in a lot of respects -- the old witch/healer (Brina), the young boy from a small village with a DESTINY (Corban), the skilled fighter who teaches the young boy (Gar), the grizzled fighter bent on revenge (Maquin), the young queen trying to establish her reign (Edana), the skilled woodsman (Camlin), the manipulative otherworldly beings (Meical and Calidus), etc. (and plenty more where those came from). You have probably seen these characters before if you have read much fantasy at all. That being said, I was kind of looking for something familiar when I picked this up, so I don't mind the character types. But, if you are looking for something new and different, this may not be for you.
This is a book where there aren't many gray characters, so when there is some moral ambiguity, it stands out. Something Meical says at the end of book 3 puts him in the gray character camp, I think. Lykos, leader of the Vin Thalun (think pirates/Viking raiders and you'll be close enough), is a nasty guy but has some interesting internal monologue that puts a different spin on things -- he does care about men he loses in battle and takes to drink rather than dealing with things (but then, you're never really in doubt that he's a bad guy). Nathair, a young king and friend of Veradis, also kind of fits this role, although he makes a conscious decision that keeps him on the darker side. A minor character, Trigg, makes a bad decision in a previous book and has to deal with the consequences. But by the time I get to Trigg, I am reaching. No, most characters are either good or bad, without much in between.
I think it is still possible to like a book with non-gray characters. You do find yourself rooting for Corban, Gar, Cywen (Corban's sister), and crew. You're sad when they lose allies. They're easy to like and their struggles are easy to understand, to sympathize with.
I spend so much time on the characters because that seems to me to be the primary focus of the book. The setting is generic medieval. What's nice for a change is that there aren't a lot of big towns. There are small towns near castles and there are holds and fortresses. But mostly people are traveling in small groups through the woods, or as big armies. I'm kind of grateful for the lack of taverns, inns, minstrels/bards, jousting, and the like.
Although the overarching plot is a battle of good versus evil, there are a lot of side plots that are more character-focused. These can be repetitive. I kind of lost count of the number of times Camlin and Rafe encountered one another (Rafe is a kid who grew up near Corban but who chose the opposite side in the war). And similarly, Maquin's storyline got a bit old. He has two people against whom he wants revenge. He is successful with one of those quests midway through the book and then his storyline devolves into a series of encounters with his other target that also gets a bit repetitive. I suppose it is possible to argue that Camlin and Rafe hadn't been established as a rivalry through multiple previous books, but Maquin and his two rivals most definitely had been, pretty much since the beginning.
The writing style has its quirks. There are lots of battle cries in ALL CAPS. A person will refer to his or her "old mam" every so often. Perhaps this is how people talk where the author is from? Or he perceives it to be how people would have talked. It kind of stands out to me. But then again, it is one of the only phrases that stuck with me in this way, so that's not too bad. Mostly the writing just sits back and does its job of telling the story. I do have to applaud the author for how he writes battle scenes -- I thought these were well done. I understood what was going on. Considering the state of medicine at the time, perhaps a few too many people survive wounds that ought to have killed them. But there are quite a lot of deaths in the book as well (most saved for the final battle; none are particularly shocking. though you will likely find some of them sad). There are a lot of daring rescue attempts (sometimes of people, sometimes of objects) and as I sit back and think about them, they are all a little different. And some of them are not successful, or someone is lost in the attempt, etc. So this was mostly well done, also.
Anyway, overall I was entertained. There were a few things (discussed above) that kept this from being perfect for me, but I do think it was a good overall conclusion to this series and if you like rather traditional hero's journey stories with lots of fighting woven into the narrative, you will probably enjoy this series overall.
Top reviews from other countries
Terrific plot outstandingly written and at a pace that is breathtaking to the point of exhausting especially in Wrath which is 760 odd pages so expected some bleary eyed mornings due to having read deep into the night because this is seriously so hard to put down.
With so many characters introduced & detailed earlier on in series ... I thought just for a while maybe there were too many , but was later how glad of it when I read Wrath.
Wrath is the 4th and last part of the series that just got better and better with each book. The worst part was waiting for the next in series, which future readers will be spared.
I seldom re-read a book but this is one series that I'm sure I will. The problem with this book is what to read next. I always have about 20 or so books sitting ready on my kindle....and tried a few after this ...but just couldn't follow it. So I had to pick something from a totally different genre.
I would urge anyone considering what fantasy book to read next, try this....I guarantee you will not be disappointed.
And for the Author I say a big thank you for sharing this epic and magnificent story, and will be buying the next book he publishes on pre-order that's for sure
But then things change. Before I realised what was happening, I was drawn in, engaged, invested and unable to put this book, or the subsequent 3, down until I had finished them all. What John manages to do so incredibly well is blur the lines. It isn’t classic good v evil. There’s more to it and the nuances of each fleshed out character and the beliefs they hold make sure that each person reading the series will have a different opinion on what is right and wrong.
Jaw to floor action scenes are delivered at pace and what some may consider “book finishers” or “end points” crop up in the most unexpected places. Skills of characters, particularly the main protagonist, Corban, feel earned in an incredibly authentic way. The world building is extremely well done with just the right amount of depth without feeling like you are reading the wiki page for one particular tree.
I went into this book with no expectations and was left feeling incredibly grateful that I got to experience this work. Fans of Robin Hobb, fantasy in general, epic worlds and true page turners will love this. It deserves its place on the shelf of “great fantasy reads” and watching (or reading) John grow in strength as an author through the series was an absolute joy.
Truth and Courage!
In this final book we see the end game of a war hundreds of years in the making play out, on one side Asroth and the scheming Calidus, who have been planning for this battle for centuries. On the other side we have Corban, at the start of the novel separated from his allies and desperately seeking a way to re-enter the fray.
Being the last book in the series there is some heartache, as those we have grown fond to bow out in heroic fashion. There is betrayal, revenge, hope and love. Ultimately, the ending brings together the myriad strands of this tale - and I for one found it most enjoyable.
If you have read the previous books then you must read this. If you haven't then go back and read the first three before diving right in. I promise you won't be disappointed.