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Theft of Swords

Written by: Michael J. Sullivan
Narrated by: Tim Gerard Reynolds
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Publisher's Summary

Audie Award Nominee, Fantasy, 2013

Acclaimed author Michael J. Sullivan created instant best sellers with his spellbinding Riyria Revelations series. This first volume introduces Royce Melborn and Hadrian Blackwater, two enterprising thieves who end up running for their lives when they’re framed for the death of the king. Trapped in a conspiracy bigger than they can imagine, their only hope is unraveling an ancient mystery - before it’s too late.

Theft of Swords contains The Crown Conspiracy and Avempartha, books 1 and 2 of Riyria Revelations.

©2011 Michael J. Sullivan (P)2012 Recorded Books, LLC

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What listeners say about Theft of Swords

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    3 out of 5 stars

Debut book issues but fun listen

Vast tale of two secretive theives who get caught up in the net of religion and politics. They lead with their wits, skills, and hearts into a set of events that will change the course of their world.

Narrator was fantastic and made bearable a debut script full of long sections of exposition (tell instead of show) and modern phrases in a fantasy world that didn't fit. That being said, the plot was pretty good, the characters are enjoyable and having read a couple of the author's short stories, and seeing the fan appetite for his subsequent works, he does get better. The conclusion of Theft of Swords will definitely convince me to continue reading (listening).

10 people found this helpful

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  • Bob
  • 2018-10-24

Great!

This was my first fictional book I listened to so the narrator took some getting used to but now I love all the voices he does. The story was gripping and the characters were likable and memorable! Nothing I didn't like about this book!

2 people found this helpful

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On the lighter side

This was my first experience with Sullivan’s work, and I was hooked right from the start. The relationship between the main characters is enduring and often hilarious. Loved the story and the narrator. #audible1

2 people found this helpful

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worth buying

this was a very good find! i like characters, story, and the narration. solid book

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Omg so good

So Sullivan is my favourite author atm and I’m totally in love with all his books. I honestly can’t get enough of these books. It’s my second time going through the series and just in time for he fourth book of Chronicles <3 #Audible1

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An Epic Listen

I very much enjoyed the narrator of this novel, He did a great job but I think I enjoyed the dramatized adaptation a little more. This series is not one to be missed, very entertaining and well written.

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A great “read”

A wonderful world full of I knew it and are you serious! Sewn together with a lovely journey of friendship and learning! An amazing “read” and look forward to more!

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Loved it!

Great story made better by the exception narration. Give this one a try you won't be disappointed!

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Theft Of Swords

Great story teller, love listening to this series and you will as well. Micheal J Sullivan never fails to entertain.

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Amazing book

I absolutely love this book!! it is such an entertaining read with lots of twists and turns to always keep you guessing. Highly recommend re-reading you always find a little Easter eggs and foreshadowing you’d never notice on the first read. Tim Reynolds is a great reader as well the voices all make the book come to life and he is very consistent with the voices so I could tell which character was speaking.

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  • Magpie
  • 2012-08-21

Two books in one - keep listening!!

If there were a way, I'd have given the story 3.5 stars. It says it in the description, but in case you missed it - this audio is two books combined into one audiobook. Which is good choice on the part of the audio publishers. If I'd listened to just the first book, I may not have continued. It's not bad, it's just not something that would inspire me to listen to 5 more books. I didn't really care about the characters and it seemed like a pretty cookie cutter sword and sorcery.
HOWEVER - in the second book, the story really hits it's stride. It's nothing revolutionary, just solid writing with fun characters and an enjoyable storyline. Which, in my opinion, is more than we're getting from a lot of fantasy writers of late. By the time I got to the end of all three audio books I was hoping to find more by this author.
To quote from the author himself about this series: "The Riyria Revelations, especially in the beginning, is little more than fast-paced light fantasy. As the series progresses, I think you'll see more depth both in the world of Elan and the characters. This was a purposeful decision and a dangerous one. It means that by design the first book is the weakest of the set, but enables me to end it with a resounding bang."
And he absolutely did.

272 people found this helpful

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  • AudioAddict
  • 2013-09-27

And I didn't think I liked fantasies...

STORY - (Epic fantasy) I have never listened to a fantasy audiobook before, but I read several reviews that mentioned this was not the typical dark, depressing midieval tale that I so dislike. I decided to give it a try, and I'm really glad I did. It's not depressing, but it's not cute or silly either. The main characters, Hadrian and Royce, are very likeable thieves who constantly attempt impossible tasks to help people in trouble. They get into all kinds of sticky situations, giving the story exciting twists and turns. And don't forget that a fantasy must have a kingdom, a wizard, a dragonlike creature, elves, dwarves... that also keep things interesting. It is a long book that never, ever drags down or gets boring.

There is sword-fighting and killing, but I wouldn't consider it overly violent or gory. While the names of some characters and places are unusual, they're not so difficult that you can't keep them straight. The book comes to a satisfactory "semi-conclusion" that ties up a lot of loose ends, but you will definitely want to continue the series.

PERFORMANCE - Good job distinguishing between multiple voices.

OVERALL - (Actual overall rating 4.5) Highly recommended for men, women and older teens. There is no sex, and I don't remember any bad language.

208 people found this helpful

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  • Randall
  • 2018-12-24

A GOOD START TO A SERIES

I got this book as an on sale item, and sometimes these are disappointing. This was a easy to listen , fun book.This book follows Royce and Hadrian as they mistakenly enter an epic adventure. Royce and Hadrian are Michael Sullivans reoccurring characters. This is the first of three books in this tale.

125 people found this helpful

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  • Roy Scorup
  • 2013-04-23

Good Clean Fun!

If you are in the mood for a light, fun read without gore, sex, and foul language, this is the book for you. It is clean enough for an 8 year old to listen to it, exciting enough to keep a pre-teen enchanted through the entire telling, and deep enough to entertain adults.

Theft of Swords is probably the worst of the trilogy, but it really is a very good book (4 stars out of 5). The two that follow it are even better. This is one book (and series) that won't disappoint

117 people found this helpful

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  • Adnan
  • 2012-04-29

Potentially a start to an incredible story

This story has a potential to become a very high quality epic fantasy. One of the great things about the book is that events take place at a very rapid pace and story moves very fast. I thought that author would spend a lot of time at certain points, but story moved on to next chain of events which was surprising.

Narrator did a great job, and I hope the same narrator is used for future books by same author.

Author builds the world carefully, and provides a lot of details. One of the interesting aspect of the story is the handling of elf which are pretty much are second class citizen in human society.

I didnt enjoy a story about thieves as much since 'lies of locke lamora'. Book has pretty good sense of humor and just the right amount of dark.

The struggle between wizard and a religious order is very interesting and it is not entirely clearly which one is less brutal.

I highly recommend this book for reader looking for good epic fantasy.

78 people found this helpful

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  • Theblackersheep
  • 2013-02-04

Fantasy without detailed battle scenes?

I like the fantasy genre. A lot. Unfortunately, much of the time fantasy=detailed, long, drawn out battle scenes that I usually wind up pretty much skimming (in the case of audio books, ignoring). That's why I was so pleased to find this series. I'm working on the last one right now and all the way through it's been about the story, not about the fighting. Leaving out the bits about who whacks whom with a sword when and which flank is being attacked by which of the enemies leaves Sullivan time to really develop the story and the characters. He gets the reader to become emotionally involved, or interested, in the characters and then puts them in situations which create all of the suspense and drama needed. It's a really good listen and I can recommend it to anyone who doesn't thrive on the violence. Not that there isn't any violence at all, but at least he doesn't go on and on and on and on about it like so many fantasy writers seem to do. I've loved every minute of the whole series.

The narrator is really good. Easy on the ear and well spoken. A good choice for these books.

71 people found this helpful

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  • Benjamin
  • 2015-02-06

Not Polished, but Extremely Readable

First of all, I think it's admirable how author succeeded through self-publication. Way to go! That in itself makes a good story for believing in yourself and your product.

The story itself is a good yarn with fencing, fighting, torture, revenge, monsters, chases, escapes, miracles... It's one giant and true love short of being the Princess Bride. To make up for this, Sullivan offers the intrigue of an evil church conspiracy bent on remaking the world to conform to their will. So it is a very interesting story that keeps you engaged.

The characters are well composed and endearing. Both the author and the reader play their parts in bringing them to life. Reynolds really brings the individuals into contrast with very subtle changes in voice. His characterizations are not super bold, but they are enough to make individuals recognizable. I am not the largest fan of his overuse of the British, West Country for low-born accents, but that is a very minor thing. Mostly very good.

My only issue with the book is that it lacks a bit of polish. Sullivan tends to overuse the word "guy," which sort of messes with the medieval setting. There are also editing flubs in the track, where words are repeated. The text could be tightened up a little bit. But all this is just quibbling; if you don't sweat the small stuff, it is a really fun read.

65 people found this helpful

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  • Lore
  • 2014-05-26

Entertaining from beginning to end!

The basic ingredients here are pretty typical for a fantasy series: multiple races, a religious mythos, plots & politics, and of course, swords & sorcery. However, Michael J. Sullivan and Tim Gerard Reynolds combine to prepare those ingredients in a masterful way that makes the whole greater than the sum of the parts. Reynolds in particular does an excellent array of voices and seems to fits the material very well.

The main characters, Royce and Hadrian, both have a sense of humor which keeps the tale humorous and entertaining throughout. Although they are both thieves who take jobs for morally ambiguous individuals, they maintain their own moral code so it is easy to root for them to succeed when things go awry. At times it can be hard to tell if Royce and Hadrian are one step ahead or one step behind but that's all part of the fun.

This audiobook is actually two books in one and well worth the single credit. The first book, The Crown Conspiracy, is a nice introduction to the characters and their surroundings and thus allows the listener to get oriented within the world. There is clearly more than meets the eye going on but the details remain hidden for the most part. In the second book, Avempartha, those details come to the forefront and the bigger picture starts to paint itself. For a while things get confusing but eventually enough details surface for it all to make sense. When book two ends there is still a lot left to sort out so the story won't feel complete without continuing on.

Theft of Swords is a worthy listen for both Fantasy veterans and newbies alike and it will leave you wanting more.

53 people found this helpful

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  • Jacob
  • 2012-06-24

Entertaining Tolkienian Fantasy

Sullivan is a fan of the Traditional Tolkienian Fantasy and it shows. There are dwarves, elves, and wizards. If you're like me, that doesn't bother you when the mood strikes to read familiar or predictable mythologies. Just don't anticipate Sullivan breaking any new ground in Fantasy story telling like an Abercrombie or Rothfuss.

That said, the story is fast paced and action packed. The characters are believable and likeable. The main characters feel familiar, a brotherhood of thieves that follow a conveniently honorable code of ethics a la Steven Lynch. There is an occasional chapter that is full of mythology--necessary, but extremely boring.

Tim Reynolds projects his voice well and is intelligible. He has above average accents and character voicing. However, a couple of his character are so similar, there are times it is difficult to tell which character said what.

46 people found this helpful

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  • Christa
  • 2012-05-04

Fun adventure fantasy!

Theft of Swords is a compilation of the first two books of this series, "The Crown Conspiracy", and "Avempatha". "Crown" is a nice introduction to our main characters, Royce and Hadrian, the best thieves in the realm, Princess Arista, who is clever in some ways, but very naive in others, and Ezra Hardin, the mysterious ancient wizard bent on finding a mysterious missin heir to a long-gone Empire. There is also a powerful Church, also seeking this heir, for reasons of their own. Mainly the first book is a fast, fun romp.

"Avempatha" starts giving the characters and the situation more complexity. We learn some things about Royce's and Hadrian's pasts, and more about the Church's plans. The plot revolving around Thrace and her father and the monster destroying her village is less interesting and a bit predictable, except for the end.

I hope Audible gets the rest of the series up soon! I want to know what happens next!

36 people found this helpful