“Nyphron Rising” by Michael J. Sullivan (Ridan Publishing, 2009)

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Things take a turn for the worse in the third installment of The Riyria Revelations after Crown Conspiracy and Avempartha – as war comes sweeping through to Melengar and its people have little hope and respect for their recent, young king.  Princess Arista has been running around playing diplomat and trying to secure allies for Melengar, with nothing to show for it.  Meanwhile the enemy Nyphron Empire continues to grow in strength and numbers.  Arista has one more trick up her sleeve, and with the help of her good friends, Royce and Hadrian, goes on this last journey far south in a last effort to secure an ally, but also to unravel a mystery of Hadrian’s past.  Surprising results are revealed about our unknown thief that ties into the whole story of the Riyria Revelations.  The wizard Esrahaddon continues to be up to no good, while we learn more of the enigmatic man known as Degan Gaunt.

Sullivan does a great job with Nyphron Rising, after setting necessary groundwork and story and setting with the first two books, he opens it up on an epic scale, traveling his invented world, and educating readers on how future events are going to affect everyone across Elan, and why the forgotten history is important.  Royce and Hadrian continue to be the entertaining and interesting characters that they are, while Arista opens up her emotional side.  Nyphron Rising ends on a sort of cliffhanger, leaving readers wanting to know more, which will be resolved (to a certain degree) in the fourth installment, The Emerald Storm.

If you liked this review and are interested in purchasing this book, click here.

Originally written on January 11th, 2010 ©Alex C. Telander.

For an interview with Michael J. Sullivan check out BookBanter Episode 10.

“Avempartha” by Michael J. Sullivan (Ridan Publishing, 2009)

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Our intrepid duo return in the second installment of The Riyria Revelations to solve another mystery and fight another day.  Before Royce and Hadrian barely have time to settle after the fun had in The Crown Conspiracy, they find themselves pulled into a new problem: a young woman needs their help as her village is being attacked by an unknown nocturnal creature.

The town of Dahlgren is an idyllic place, except now it is visited each night by an ancient monster looking to terrorize and kill everyone.  Royce and Hadrian know they can’t take on this beast by themselves, at least not without some impressive magic, and call on the help of their old friend and brilliant wizard, Esrahaddon.  Hadrian does his best to protect the town and its people, fortifying it, and having everyone hide out in the fortress each night.  Meanwhile Royce and Esrahaddon journey to the ancient elven tower known as Avempartha.  There they hope to confront the beast and kill it.  But everything doesn’t go according to plan, as it never does, and Hadrian learns some very important things about himself.

Like The Crown Conspiracy, Avempartha is a perfect stand alone book, as well as being a sequel; it can be read either way.  Sullivan ramps up the action and story, as we learn more about the characters we’ve come to like, as well about the incredible world he has created.  At the same time more details are revealed about the growing overall story, leaving readers waiting in earnest for the next installment.

If you liked this review and are interested in purchasing this book, click here.

Originally written on June 10th, 2009 ©Alex C. Telander.

For an interview with Michael J. Sullivan check out BookBanter Episode 10.