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Witch King

de Martha Wells

Outros autores: Veja a seção outros autores.

Séries: The Rising World (1)

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1,0104420,709 (3.76)44
After being murdered, his consciousness dormant and unaware of the passing of time while confined in an elaborate water trap, Kai wakes to find a lesser mage attempting to harness Kai's magic to his own advantage. That was never going to go well. But why was Kai imprisoned in the first place? What has changed in the world since his assassination? And why does the Rising World Coalition appear to be growing in influence? Kai will need to pull his allies close and draw on all his pain magic if he is to answer even the least of these questions. He's not going to like the answers.… (mais)
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Mostrando 1-5 de 44 (seguinte | mostrar todas)
Like Murderbot, this fantasy ends most chapters on a cliffhanger, and keeps you turning pages to see what happens next. Which can be frustrating, as it is a book that alternates between the backstory and the current action, and I definitely found myself in places annoyed that I'd jumped back to the 'other' story!

It does a lovely job of entwining the two though, and introducing us to a complex and well imagined fantasy world, populated by interesting peoples with their own powers and histories.

It might be the first book in a longer series, but it does a good job of being a self contained story despite that. ( )
  atreic | May 21, 2024 |
Martha Wells knows how to write, no doubt about it. Everything makes sense, it's well rounded and well paced. As she admits, she had trouble finding a conclusion and it shows. This is merely a starting off point for a bigger series.

But oh. my. god. Why? Why does everyone has to have weird pronouns? Everyone starts off with they/them which then switches to their preferred pronouns (without any indication when they told anyone of their preference). This is confusing as hell. And it adds nothing to the story.

Also, why does she spend a paragraph or two on clothing for every. single. new. character. Not even character, just a bunch of people standing around have their clothes described in detail. Adds nothing but fluff.

I read two short books in the meantime because I could not get myself to pick up this book, it was that boring. ( )
  cwebb | Apr 15, 2024 |
Kinda boring book if I'm being honest. The flashbacks were much more interesting than the modern story. That said, the world was very interesting and as an epic fantasy reader I want to know more about it. The stories here didn't do much for me, but the world was so interesting and I wish we had more insight into it. In fact, I think if the book had been 50-100 page longer and had had more scenes from the world (and significantly more exposition) I would have enjoyed it more. it's a shame that Martha Wells intends this to be a standalone novel. There is so much more to explore here ( )
  soup_house | Apr 9, 2024 |
I read this book as part of the Nebula finalist packet.

I love Martha Wells's writing, and Witch King is in many ways brilliant, establishing a fresh new fantasy world with unique magic and vibrant characters. Kai is a demon, but the term means something different here, though he does possess bodies and comes from an underworld. As the book begins, he and a comrade are captured in a watery prison, and he breaks free. I was left disoriented at first--like I jumped into a book halfway--and while it took me a while to get my bearings, curiosity had me hooked and I read on.

Much of the plot focuses on Kai's search for answers about who imprisoned him and his comrades, and why. However, this is only one plot line, and there's another, parallel path that is about his past, how he grew up, and how he met his comrades. Both storylines are interesting, but I don't know if the back and forth was necessary. A whole book about Kai's earlier years would've been quite compelling and easier to follow, and could have connected to this one--which would have needed a lot more plot to be a full novel length. ( )
  ladycato | Apr 7, 2024 |
Kai used to be your average demon living in a body of a recently deceased girl, but eventually, he become one of the heroes that defeated the dreaded Hierarchs. Sounds like a spoiler? Well, it isn't because the main story is happening about 70 years after the world has been liberated from their domination. All the countries are now part of a big alliance, and the accords are about to be renewed. As one of the important figures, Kai is invited to attend. Then he wakes up out of his murdered body without a clue what happened. He needs to escape from his prison together with his witch friend and find out who betrayed him.

In addition to this more investigative storyline, the book also includes chapters set in the past. It is almost 50/50 divided between the past and the present storylines.

I can see that Martha Wells wanted to give the story a bit different approach by starting the book after the big fight had already been won. I am not sure it worked much for me because I appreciated the past chapters more than the present ones. Nevertheless, the present chapters also reveal parts of the past story and help discover this unique world.

The world-building was without a doubt the thing that captivated me the most. Even the characters were more interesting not because of their personalities and relationships, but because of their abilities.

The demons were my favorite race. The whole concept of the way they live in the human world and their abilities were quite original. The world has various types of magic that at the same time seem to have a kind of the same basis.

"Bashasa stared as if he had never seen Kai before. Kai knew his clothes were covered with slashes and blood, that his braids were unraveled because someone very foolish and now dead had grabbed his hair from behind and tried to cut his throat. Bashasa was just as disheveled, his brocade coat sleeves slashed bloody, his knuckles scraped raw. He said, “You have a knife in your chest.” Oh, right, he did."


The whole lore could certainly support a long series and I have a feeling this could potentially become one. While the story works as a standalone, the past storyline still had a lot more to tell and the present one had this one piece of information thrown in that, in my opinion, strongly hinted at a potential sequel.

I received an ARC for free, and I am leaving this review voluntarily.

( )
  Levitara | Apr 5, 2024 |
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Nome do autorFunçãoTipo de autorObra?Status
Martha Wellsautor principaltodas as ediçõescalculado
Mok, EricNarradorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado

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After being murdered, his consciousness dormant and unaware of the passing of time while confined in an elaborate water trap, Kai wakes to find a lesser mage attempting to harness Kai's magic to his own advantage. That was never going to go well. But why was Kai imprisoned in the first place? What has changed in the world since his assassination? And why does the Rising World Coalition appear to be growing in influence? Kai will need to pull his allies close and draw on all his pain magic if he is to answer even the least of these questions. He's not going to like the answers.

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