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Shadows of the Realm (The Circle of Talia Book 1) by [Lister, Dionne]
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Shadows of the Realm (The Circle of Talia Book 1) Kindle Edition

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Length: 465 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Product Description

Product Description

Readers who love David Eddings, Raymond Feist, dragons, sorcerers, animals that talk to humans mind to mind, and magic should try Shadows of the Realm. It's a coming-of-age book for fantasy readers aged from ten and upwards and is on the Chief Minister's Reading Challenge list for schools in the ACT, Australia. Readers have loved the dragons, the world building and the original magic system.

Bronwyn and Blayke are two strangers being drawn into the same war. Their world is facing invasion from the Third Realm. While they move unknowingly toward each other, they are watched, hunted, and sabotaged. When the Dragon God interferes, it seems their world, Talia, will succumb to the threat. Can they learn enough of the tricks of the Realms before it’s too late, or will everything they love be destroyed?

The young Realmists’ journey pushes them away from all they’ve known, to walk in the shadows toward Vellonia, city of the dragons, where an even darker shadow awaits.

Product Details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 767 KB
  • Print Length: 465 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0987307800
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B007X6Y02I
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #183,325 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) HASH(0xa35a89b4) out of 5 stars 65 reviews
24 of 24 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa376c554) out of 5 stars Excellently written Lyrical Fantasy High Adventure May 12 2012
By Mallory Heart Reviews - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition
This debut novel is the first of a series (The Circle of Talia) and is a smooth-reading, delightful, high fantasy. Even readers who don't usually head for the fantasy shelves can find much to delight in here, as did I. The writing is excellent, and author Dionne Lister deserves much more than five stars for her ability with lyrical description, which makes the reading flow so well.

The characters are superbly delineated, and the action is realistic and intriguing. A good balance is achieved between destiny and free will in the lives of the characters, an effect not always managed in fantasy stories. The world-building is also very accomplished. In fact, I encourage readers to keep an eye on author Dionne Lister and anticipate, as I am, the next installments in The Circle of Talia series.
18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa376c5a8) out of 5 stars Oddly familiar but fantastical fantay June 19 2012
By Helen2011 - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition
I picked up this book knowing a little of what to expect, dragons, adventure, good vs evil. I started reading and then could not put the book down until I had finished. I lost track of time reading it.

The book centers around a secret group called Realmists, possessed of magical powers who are sworn to protect their world, Talia, from the evil race that exists in another realm. This race once lived on Talia and were banished, but are determined to return.

The book contains a surprising variety of characters, ranging from teenagers through to adults and magicians of advanced age. And of course the dragons, who in this case are portrayed as being on the side of the realm. The dragon characterisation is fascinating. The words used to draw a picture of their intelligence, strength, and their nature are so powerful that the reader has absolutely no difficulty in accepting them as part of the world we are drawn into. Equally the human characters are drawn as individuals, each with their own backgrounds, faults, opinions and reactions. Again it makes it very easy to find yourself drawn into their world.

Realmists can bond with one selected animal, a creatura, and even these are well drawn with a great variety of animals used. I found it a pleasant surprise to be able to read about , as it were, familiars who range from rats to panthers. Another pleasant surprise is the way that the Creatura's point of view is also presented.

All through the book I felt an odd sense of familiarity. I could not pin down why at first, it was not that I had seen the plot or any major plot devices used before. Some elements of the world drawn can be found in other fantasy novels, for example familiars, but that was not it either. In the end I simply had to conclude that it was due to the way the writing drew me in and made me feel a part of the book from start to finish.
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa357fc3c) out of 5 stars Best fantasy read of 2012! May 17 2012
By Amazon Customer - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition
Dionne Lister's Shadows of the Realm starts out with a scene that grabs you, and does not let go, even after you've finished reading. Exceptional in the fact that it is a completely unique novel, Lister creates a new world that is so realistic, it makes the reader want to grab a ticket and head over for a nice permanent vacation. I fell in love with the characters, and was disappointed when the novel ended, and am ready for more. I will be impatiently waiting the rest of the books in the series, and am desperate for more!
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa376c830) out of 5 stars Rough Start Leads To Potential April 28 2013
By Eoghann Irving - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition
Dionne Lister is an independent writer and Shadows of the Realm is her first novel and at times it shows.

Shadows of the Realm is also the first book in the Circle of Talia fantasy series. It's important to know that going in because you're not going to get any resolution at the end of this book, just some major cliffhangers. The other thing to be aware of is that this is designated as a Young Adult book so that gives you an idea of the target audience the author is going for.

The basic story here is familiar ground for fantasy fans. We've got a world in peril from a hideous evil that is returning from banishment. We've got magic, dragons and a couple of teenagers with a somewhat mysterious background who will play a key role in saving the world of Talia. Nothing particularly original, but there's nothing wrong with it either. Some of my favorite fantasy stories growing up were things like the Shannara series by Terry Brooks and The Belgariad by David Eddings.

Where I feel Lister stumbles a little is in the pacing and the narrative focus. There are a lot of characters and some just appear out of nowhere as it were a hundred pages into the book. That makes it harder to get attached to anyone because things are moving around so much.

Additionally while clearly there is significant peril, we really don't feel it for a very long time. We get told how dangerous things are and how important to get places it is. But none of the events we see along the way really connect together. It's all a little distant.

It's really not until the last third of the book than things kick into gear and we start to see real peril for the protagonists. I almost feel like the early part of the book after the initial character introductions could have been skipped to get to the meat of the story.

A perfect example is King Edmund and his brother Prince Leon. We are quickly introduced to the questionable nature of Leon and then told that Edmund will hear no wrong of his brother. Why then in the first scene that they share is Edmund so short tempered and critical of his brother?

Now having been a bit negative about things I should point out that I actually rather enjoyed the book despite the flaws. I like some traditional epic fantasy, the use of dragons in this book is sufficiently different to elsewhere to make them interesting and the villainous race the Gormons do seem to have some real bite to them.

Once the pace picked up, I found I was reading considerably larger chunks each night than I had been during the early chapters and the conclusion leaves me genuinely interested as to how the cliffhanger will be resolved.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa376ca70) out of 5 stars Fantastical Ride... May 21 2012
By Dee - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
4.5 stars for this beautiful high fantasy book by Dionne Lister. From a nightmare awakening, to mythical and magical creatures, this book comes together with well laid out characters to deliver a fun escape into a fantasy realm. While the book comes to a resolution, it leaves you edgy and wanting for more. I personally can't wait until book two is out.