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The Raven Tower

Written by: Ann Leckie
Narrated by: Adjoa Andoh
Length: 12 hrs and 2 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (16 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Gods meddle in the fates of men, men play with the fates of gods, and a pretender must be cast down from the throne in this breathtaking first fantasy novel from Ann Leckie, New York Times best-selling author and winner of the Hugo, Nebula, and Arthur C. Clarke Awards.

For centuries, the kingdom of Iraden has been protected by the god known as the Raven. He watches over his territory from atop a tower in the powerful port of Vastai. His will is enacted through the Raven's Lease, a human ruler chosen by the god himself. His magic is sustained via the blood sacrifice that every Lease must offer. And under the Raven's watch, the city flourishes.

But the power of the Raven is weakening. A usurper has claimed the throne. The kingdom borders are tested by invaders who long for the prosperity that Vastai boasts. And they have made their own alliances with other gods.

It is into this unrest that the warrior Eolo - aide to Mawat, the true Lease - arrives. And in seeking to help Mawat reclaim his city, Eolo discovers that the Raven's Tower holds a secret. Its foundations conceal a dark history that has been waiting to reveal itself...and to set in motion a chain of events that could destroy Iraden forever.

©2019 Ann Leckie (P)2019 Hachette Audio

What the critics say

"Leckie's tale takes on a mythic, metafictional quality...and the story's elements weave into a stunning conclusion. This impressive piece of craftsmanship cements Leckie's place as a powerful voice in both SF and fantasy." (Publishers Weekly, starred review)

"Sharp, many layered, and, as always for Leckie, deeply intelligent." (Kirkus, starred review)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Beautiful exploration of the complexities of power

I love Ann Leckie's novels because she writes so well about the diverse and dynamic complexities of power relations. In "The Raven Tower", she does this just as well as her science fiction novels. I did not immediately realise the links to Hamlet, but once this was pointed out to me I saw the many ways in which she drew on characters and relations from Hamlet. In particular, I loved the parallels to Rosencrantz and Guildenstern. Adjoa Andoh is an incredible narrator and has made the many characters almost perfectly distinguishable.She is on my narrators to follow list now!! I would love to see her act...alas I do not live in the UK.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • CCCii
  • SF Bay Area, USA
  • 2019-03-04

Wonderful

Some reviews say this starts slowly. I don't think so. It does drop you into a story you need to figure out and adjust to. But it's so worth it. This is exactly what SF/fantasy does at it's best. It offers new ideas and ways to look at thing in a new way as part of an engaging story. This book is a thinking persons novel. It forgoes chase scenes, big battles and tough guy talk to give you something truly creative and interesting. I may have a new favorite author.

19 of 21 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • CB
  • 2019-06-07

Disappointing after the Ancillary series

I really wanted to like this, but just couldn't get really invested in it (though I did finish!). It moved slowly, the narrative frame was a bit disorienting, and I didn't find any of the characters interesting or appealing enough to really catch me. I ultimately felt like I just didn't really care about anything that was going on. Adjoa Andoh was an amazing voice actor as always, but I just did not find this a compelling story.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Michael_GR
  • 2019-04-12

great book hampered by odd narration

I loved the book! amazing concept and a great, engaging read. but man, that narration... so first of all there's this city in the book, Ard Usktia. granted, a bit of a mouthfull... the narrator seemed to choke every time she had to pronounce it for about half the book, and then found a way to pronounce it that didn't stop the narration in its tracks, by completely ignoring the "k" in vusktia.
The protagonist was given a high, timid, whiny voice, whice to a certain degree was appropriate but was too grating most of the time.
All other characters were given a myriad of strange accents with little rhyme or reason.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
  • Leah
  • 2019-06-01

Jarring Narration. Story not engaging

Seemingly every character has a different, unrelated accent, some of which are exaggerated to the point of charicature. It’s very distracting during dialogue. I appreciate narration with different voices and accents, but this is way over the top. There were moments when I engaged with the story but they didn’t build to anything. The prose is fine, nothing so special that I could deal with the glacial pace of the story development. I gave up after 4 hours.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Steven
  • 2019-03-01

Excellent narrator and author

This narrator brings life to the story even through mundane parts. The author is top notch and I’ve enjoyed several of her works now. The combo of this author and narrator is phenomenal!

6 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • T. Payne
  • Houston, TX
  • 2019-06-26

Missing something

It almost rang good and true on all marks, but felt it fell flat at times when it could of expanded more or created some other conflict. I’ll admit I’m not 100% amazed by the book, but I’m not turned off from it either.

It set a good story, it had okay details, but lacked a connection to any of the characters. I didn’t feel like I cared what happened to any of them honestly and felt I had to reconnect myself to the book each time I picked it up to be able to finish it.

Just didn’t hit al the notes for me.

100% loved the person Voice acting/narrating the story.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Stretch's Books
  • 2019-03-12

Ummmmmm

I'm not really sure how I feel about this book. Well over 1/2 way through it and I still had no idea wtf was going on.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Anonymous User
  • 2019-03-08

Mostly Minor Gripes

Parts of the book wax too long. Narrator has an impressive range of accents but unfortunately tried to show them all off. Makes no sense for characters from relatively close regions to have accents as wildly different as soft Irish and thick African. Overall a pretty great read.

5 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Cassandra Rhamy
  • 2019-03-04

Truth, Assumption, Gods and Court intrigue

Sometimes what you want a story with elements hidden from you... and /for/ you in plain sight.
Elements you notice but brush off or mildly forget. Obfuscated by your own assumptions, time, level of understanding.
Fans of an these types of stories and especially those with an unreliable narrator rejoice this story is for you.

The orators performance is astounding Adjoa Andoh has read all but one of Ann's books and knows how and when to direct the Ann's intended emotion through to you.
I could almost hear Adjoa and Ann get a huge smile on their faces with the first big twist. "Got ya!"

6 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
  • Gail N.
  • 2019-03-26

The story did not engage my interest

The writing was wooden and the story did not engage my interest. It seemed to go nowhere. The reader did not improve things and read in a tedious monotone. I gave up after about 1 hour.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful