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Original Essays | September 15, 2014

Lois Leveen: IMG Forsooth Me Not: Shakespeare, Juliet, Her Nurse, and a Novel



There's this writer, William Shakespeare. Perhaps you've heard of him. He wrote this play, Romeo and Juliet. Maybe you've heard of it as well. It's... Continue »
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    Lois Leveen 9781476757445

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Furies of Calderon: Codex Alera #01

by

Furies of Calderon: Codex Alera #01 Cover

ISBN13: 9780441012688
ISBN10: 044101268x
Condition: Standard
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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

In the realm of Alera, where people bond with the furies — elementals of earth, air, fire, water, wood, and metal — 15-year-old Tavi struggles with his lack of furycrafting. As his homeland erupts in chaos — when rebels war with loyalists and furies clash with furies — Tavi's simple courage will turn the tides of war.

Review:

"At the start of Butcher's absorbing fantasy, the first in a new series, the barbarians are at the gates of the land of Alera, which has a distinct flavor of the Roman Empire (its ruler is named Quintus Sextus and its soldiers are organized in legions). Fortunately, Alera has magical defenses, involving the furies or elementals of water, earth, air, fire and metal, that protect against foes both internal and external. Amara, a young female spy, and her companion, Odiana, go into some of the land's remoter territories to discover if military commander Atticus Quentin is a traitor — another classic trope from ancient Rome. She encounters a troubled young man, Tavi, who has hitherto been concerned mostly with the vividly depicted predatory 'herdbanes' that threaten his sheep as well as with his adolescent sexual urges (handled tastefully). Thinking that Amara is an escaping slave, Tavi decides to help her and is immediately sucked in over his head into a morass of intrigues, military, magical and otherwise. Butcher (Storm Front, etc.) does a thorough job of world building, to say nothing of developing his action scenes with an abundance of convincing detail. This page-turner bodes well for future volumes." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Review:

"[A] real page-turner, with the classic plot of a kingdom threatened by both an outside invader and internal treachery enlivened by an abundance of original details and sheer storytelling gusto....A promising series launcher." Booklist

Review:

"Butcher creates a world modeled on ancient Rome that is full of warring lords and elemental magics. With strong, likable characters and a graceful storytelling style, this series debut should appeal to fans of epic fantasy." Library Journal

Synopsis:

For a thousand years, the people of Alera have united against the aggressive and threatening races that inhabit the world, using their unique bond with the furies - elementals of earth, air, fire, water, and metal. But now, Gaius Sextus, First Lord of Alera, grows old and lacks an heir. Ambitious High Lords plot and maneuver to place their Houses in positions of power, and a war of succession looms on the horizon." "Far from city politics in the Calderon Valley, the boy Tavi struggles with his lack of furycrafting. At fifteen, he has no wind fury to help him fly, no fire fury to light his lamps. Yet as the Alerans' most savage enemy - the Marat - return to the Valley, he will discover that his destiny is much greater than he could ever imagine." Caught in a storm of deadly wind furies, Tavi saves the life of a runaway slave named Amara. But she is actually a spy for Gaius Sextus, sent to the Valley to gather intelligence on traitors to the Crown, who may be in league with the barbaric Marat horde. And when the Valley erupts in chaos - when rebels war with loyalists and furies clash with furies - Amara will find Tavi's courage and resourcefulness to be a power greater than any fury - one that could turn the tides of war.

About the Author

A martial arts enthusiast whose resumé includes a long list of skills rendered obsolete at least two hundred years ago, Jim Butcher turned to writing as a career because anything else probably would have driven him insane. He lives with his wife, his son, and a ferocious guard dog.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 3 comments:

hauki, August 4, 2012 (view all comments by hauki)
A very satisfying series by the author of the Dresden Files. A good twist on the swords\sorcery genre.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
cwelgin, September 25, 2011 (view all comments by cwelgin)
This book is pretty good. Your typical fantasy story. A young kid on the verge of becoming an adult wrestles with being different. At the same time, the world is coming apart. Evil forces are on the verge of destroying an age old empire. The kid is the only one who can save the day. He's helped by his motley band of... well... this is definitely nothing new.

I guess why I might be tempted to give this book a half way decent review is that it is readable. What makes it unique is the 'Fury' aspect. Furies are 'spirits'. Everyone in this world has a Fury except for the main character, that kid I was talking about, Tavi. People use the Furies mostly for war it seems.

This might be the first book I have ever read where I was saying "ok already, just die". There are 3 bad guys who are chasing the kid, a young lady and the kids uncle/aunt. By the time this book is over, every single one of them has been on the brink of death many many times, has narrowly avoided death, has taken part in a battle and been spared death... on and on. So at a certain point, your not sighing with relief at the close escape, but cursing the author, saying "Common now".

I don't want to go on and on. Butcher is one of the most popular authors out there today. At my local bookstore, I swear there are a couple hundred copies of his books. I wanted to see what all the hype was about. Let me tell you, this is no where near the George RR Martin books. It reads more like that massive Robert Jordan series, 'Wheel of Time'. In fact, I might be too generous with 3 stars.

The characters are ok. the plot is rehashed, the writing is above average, and the concept is (other than the furies themselves) old school. I wouldn't go running out to get a copy of this if I were you.
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(1 of 1 readers found this comment helpful)
Tim Lewis, September 2, 2011 (view all comments by Tim Lewis)
This series has an interesting magic system based on elements such as fire and water (and not like watching The Last Airbender), with characters that are unique and engaging. Butcher takes a fantasy formula that works and added a twist here and there. While not groundbreaking, it is still engaging and written well enough to enjoy at least this first book in the series. I say give it a shot.
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Product Details

ISBN:
9780441012688
Author:
Butcher, Jim
Publisher:
Ace Books
Subject:
General
Subject:
Boys
Subject:
Fantasy - General
Subject:
Kings and rulers
Subject:
Fantasy - Epic
Subject:
Fantasy fiction
Subject:
Science Fiction and Fantasy-Fantasy
Copyright:
Edition Description:
MM Picture Book
Series:
Codex Alera
Series Volume:
01
Publication Date:
20050631
Binding:
MASS MARKET
Grade Level:
from 12
Language:
English
Pages:
672
Dimensions:
6.98x4.28x1.15 in. .52 lbs.
Age Level:
from 18

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Related Subjects


Fiction and Poetry » Science Fiction and Fantasy » A to Z
Fiction and Poetry » Science Fiction and Fantasy » Fantasy » Epic
Fiction and Poetry » Science Fiction and Fantasy » Fantasy » General

Furies of Calderon: Codex Alera #01 Used Mass Market
0 stars - 0 reviews
$5.95 In Stock
Product details 672 pages Ace Books - English 9780441012688 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "At the start of Butcher's absorbing fantasy, the first in a new series, the barbarians are at the gates of the land of Alera, which has a distinct flavor of the Roman Empire (its ruler is named Quintus Sextus and its soldiers are organized in legions). Fortunately, Alera has magical defenses, involving the furies or elementals of water, earth, air, fire and metal, that protect against foes both internal and external. Amara, a young female spy, and her companion, Odiana, go into some of the land's remoter territories to discover if military commander Atticus Quentin is a traitor — another classic trope from ancient Rome. She encounters a troubled young man, Tavi, who has hitherto been concerned mostly with the vividly depicted predatory 'herdbanes' that threaten his sheep as well as with his adolescent sexual urges (handled tastefully). Thinking that Amara is an escaping slave, Tavi decides to help her and is immediately sucked in over his head into a morass of intrigues, military, magical and otherwise. Butcher (Storm Front, etc.) does a thorough job of world building, to say nothing of developing his action scenes with an abundance of convincing detail. This page-turner bodes well for future volumes." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Review" by , "[A] real page-turner, with the classic plot of a kingdom threatened by both an outside invader and internal treachery enlivened by an abundance of original details and sheer storytelling gusto....A promising series launcher."
"Review" by , "Butcher creates a world modeled on ancient Rome that is full of warring lords and elemental magics. With strong, likable characters and a graceful storytelling style, this series debut should appeal to fans of epic fantasy."
"Synopsis" by ,

For a thousand years, the people of Alera have united against the aggressive and threatening races that inhabit the world, using their unique bond with the furies - elementals of earth, air, fire, water, and metal. But now, Gaius Sextus, First Lord of Alera, grows old and lacks an heir. Ambitious High Lords plot and maneuver to place their Houses in positions of power, and a war of succession looms on the horizon." "Far from city politics in the Calderon Valley, the boy Tavi struggles with his lack of furycrafting. At fifteen, he has no wind fury to help him fly, no fire fury to light his lamps. Yet as the Alerans' most savage enemy - the Marat - return to the Valley, he will discover that his destiny is much greater than he could ever imagine." Caught in a storm of deadly wind furies, Tavi saves the life of a runaway slave named Amara. But she is actually a spy for Gaius Sextus, sent to the Valley to gather intelligence on traitors to the Crown, who may be in league with the barbaric Marat horde. And when the Valley erupts in chaos - when rebels war with loyalists and furies clash with furies - Amara will find Tavi's courage and resourcefulness to be a power greater than any fury - one that could turn the tides of war.

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