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Wichry archipelagu (polish) de Bradley P.…
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Wichry archipelagu (polish) (edició 2011)

de Bradley P. Beaulieu (Autor)

Sèrie: Lays of Anuskaya (1)

MembresRessenyesPopularitatValoració mitjanaMencions
331961,937 (3.5)17
Serviced by windships bearing goods and dignitaries, the mountainous archipelago Khalakovo stands at the crossroads of world trade. When an elemental spirit attacks an incoming windship, murdering one of the Nine Dukes and his retinue, Prince Nikandr, heir to the scepter of Khalakovo, is tasked with finding the child prodigy believed to be behind the summoning.… (més)
Membre:bel_e_muir
Títol:Wichry archipelagu (polish)
Autors:Bradley P. Beaulieu (Autor)
Informació:Proszynski (2011), 640 pages
Col·leccions:La teva biblioteca, Llegit, però no el tinc, Series, In Polish
Valoració:***
Etiquetes:Fantasy

Informació de l'obra

The Winds of Khalakovo de Bradley P. Beaulieu

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» Mira també 17 mencions

Es mostren 1-5 de 9 (següent | mostra-les totes)
Setting aside at page 68 (of 447) because this story is being told to me, not shown, and certainly not felt. I think it's probably an interesting story - we have a steampunky Russian-esque archipelagan empire held together by airships and ruling classes and riddled with subjugated classes, famine and pestilence (of hinted magical/phenomenon origin). We've hit issues of class and race inequality from the get-go, through our two viewpoint characters of Nikandr (a Prince, a have) and his mistress Rehada (a wanderer of the underclass, a have-not), and I could see those developing in promising ways. But through both narrations, we keep being told about emotions and yearnings of which no evidence is shown. The story thus far has been tremendously opaque - not to mention that we haven't yet achieved the inciting incident outlined on the back of the book - and the writing isn't charming enough for me to want to hang around waiting for tidbits of elucidation to be doled out.
  cupiscent | Aug 3, 2019 |
It took me a time to get myself oriented amon the Russian-like and Arabic-like names and words but it was rewarding. I liked this book a lot, the plot, the magic system (the drowning chambers, brrr), the characters, very human and not two-dimensional characters. ( )
  Sept | May 21, 2019 |
Beaulieu's novel is a deep, highly original work of fantasy. The use of airships may cause an initial impression that this is steampunk, but it's not--this is hardcore epic fantasy with fascinating magic and political backstabbing galore. ( )
  ladycato | Aug 10, 2017 |
Just fabulous. ( )
  Jon_Hansen | Apr 9, 2017 |
A pretty solid fantasy in the airship genre - not Victoriana for once, but a fantasy world with a reasonably solid worldbuilding explanation for their presence in the fact that the world's magic revolves around summoning and controlling elementals. I was alarmed by the presence of not only a map, but an extensive list of characters and a glossary - thankfully these weren't actually necessary for reference even once. The setting is an archipelago with a mashup of (colonising, factional) faux-Russian feudal domains and the nomadic indigenous culture who have a stronger grasp of elemental magic. Although the nomads have made peace with the long-ago invaders and agreed a beneficial coexistence, I still got a sense of injustice about the whole business, and the presence of a terrorist group determined to destroy the settlers made perfect sense.

There are multiple plot threads running through this: personal arcs, political scheming, and the epic plot that forms the backbone of the books and forces characters into drastic actions against the will of their superiors. I found the overall plot intriguing enough to hook me in its early stages, and although I found it a little weaker towards the end, the shape of it was enough to keep things moving. The weakness isn't so much the plot itself, but just that once the explanations start coming in, the "what is actually going on metaphysically here" becomes a mixture of technical and vague that didn't particularly grip me. There's quite a lot going on with the magic and things like the elemental gems, the apparently-random (but plot-crucial) bonds and the nature of the hezhan didn't feel clear enough for me to follow the flow of events with that precious feeling of things making perfect sense. Beaulieu seems a good writer so I feel this could have been improved with a little more work.

The characters were interesting enough; the focus is on noble Nikandr, his lover Rehada and his wife-to-be Atiana, but we get a little insight into the lives of others too. The enigmatic Nasim is obviously an important party, but although he does have some characterisation, he feels like more of a McGuffin, which is sort of inevitable with these types of characters. Unfortunately I felt his mentor Ashan was equally blank. In general the faux-Russian characters seemed far more richly characterised than the nomads, which is regrettable - the nomads seemed to largely tend towards inscrutability, which is a bit overplayed and something you get a lot with non-white fantasy cultures. A secondary minor issue is that because of the terrorist angle, I can only recall one significant character (and two single-appearance named bit-parts) who was both a nomad and not a terrorist.

To be fair, I thought the terrorist characters were quite interesting and portrayed with a considerable amount of subtlety and richness. I really liked Rehada and found her the most interesting person in the book, perhaps because she does have more facets to her character than anyone else.

The nature of the plot means that characters spend an awful lot of their time getting captured and being at other people's mercy, and I appreciated Beaulieu being an equal-opportunity captor here - Nikandr is captured as often as the women are and in some ways able to do less about it. They're also compelled by autocratic (and genuinely dangerous) parents and social roles, and at other times trail around waiting for events to make more sense. This is perfectly fine stuff, and handled okay, but I confess it's not especially to my taste. I don't like powerful people toying with lives, whether that's their own families or the citizens they rule absolutely, and nor do I like my protagonists being powerless for long periods. Purely a matter of taste, and it didn't spoil the book or anything.

Spoilers begin.

Although it happens at the end of the book, I was genuinely disappointed by Rehada's death. That's not to say it makes no sense narratively; she is a terrorist who's abetted all the disaster that befell, she's had a long and complex redemption arc, and she is also a competitor for Nikandr's affections. She sacrifices herself to save him at the last minute (and not in a particularly motivational way, which is a relief) and he's moved by it. Her death also ties up the unfortunate complications around what the various governments would actually do with a known terrorist-turned-heroine.

Unfortunately, since she was the most interesting character in the whole book, this leaves the sequels feeling much less interesting. It also deprives us of a cool female character and the only significant non-white character.

Frankly, I would have been far happier to see Atiana die, since she's a much more generic fantasy character: Equivocating Fiancée Develops Magic and Nebulously Helps Hero, Is Princess is something I've seen many times, whereas Rehada very much wasn't. Equally, the death of a temperamental white princess doesn't feel like it would really detract from the story (plenty of male nobles get wiped out) and it would leave us with a much more interesting relationship. A series where the axis is Nikandr-Rehana only, with all the tensions and uncertainties about who they are and what their relationship is or could be, seems vastly more interesting than one where it's only Nikandr-Atiana, who are specifically keen on each other, of equivalent status, have no betrayals or cultural differences dividing them and no significant secrets.


The writing felt smooth and pretty strong, and I didn't pick up on any jarring moments or significant confusion, nor did I spot anything that obviously didn't make sense plotwise. There's a perspective trick used (shifting tense) to show transitions between essentially the main story and... visions, or something similar.

Beaulieu hit what I thought was a reasonable note in portraying his setting as not generic fantasy; there's faux-Russian names and a fairly light scattering of nouns thrown in, things like clothing and weapons, which isn't strictly necessary (I know some people prefer a sword to always be a "sword") but I found kept me in mind of the intended flavour. People more concerned about knowing exactly how the military ranks work can use the glossary at the back.

I will be reading the next installment to see where it goes, but I admit I have some trepidation as to whether the new cast can hold it together. I'd like to see the nomads getting more spotlight, though I don't think it's especially likely.

Minor griping: the dark-skinned indigenous nomads as the mystical people with the ancient and primal connection to how magic works is... let's say, overdone. ( )
  Shimmin | Feb 6, 2017 |
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Nom de l'autorCàrrecTipus d'autorObra?Estat
Beaulieu, Bradley P.autor primaritotes les edicionsconfirmat
Paquette, AdamAutor de la cobertaautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
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For Joanne, who was with me every step of the way.  Thank you, dear friend, my lovely wife.  I couldn't have done it without you.
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In a modest home in the center of Volgorod, Nikandr Iaroslov Khalakovo sat in a simple wooden chair, considering the woman sleeping on the bed nearby.
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Serviced by windships bearing goods and dignitaries, the mountainous archipelago Khalakovo stands at the crossroads of world trade. When an elemental spirit attacks an incoming windship, murdering one of the Nine Dukes and his retinue, Prince Nikandr, heir to the scepter of Khalakovo, is tasked with finding the child prodigy believed to be behind the summoning.

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