Customer Reviews for

Furies of Calderon (Codex Alera Series #1)

Average Rating 4.5
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

12 out of 19 people found this review helpful.

Docked for Sexual Content

What if everyone in your world had magical abilities except you? In Alera, where even lighting a lamp requires magic, Tavi is in just such a situation. When the realm falls under attack he has only his mind to help save himself, his family, and the whole of Alera.

F...
What if everyone in your world had magical abilities except you? In Alera, where even lighting a lamp requires magic, Tavi is in just such a situation. When the realm falls under attack he has only his mind to help save himself, his family, and the whole of Alera.

Furies of Calderon follows several characters through the web of conflict that threatens their lives. Overall the story is engaging and enjoyable, but can seem slow and overwhelming at the beginning due to the complexity of the world and situations you are thrown into. There are graphic violence scenes as well as some sexual content. While the sexual scenes are few and not significant to the story, they tend to focus on the characters feelings of "hot need."

As far as a romping good tale goes, I would highly recommend this book, if you can get through the overwhelming nature of the first quarter. However, I have to dock it for sexual content that I do not feel adds positively to the characters, romance, or plot. It is entirely possible to do good clean romance without going beyond something I would feel comfortable with my son reading. I believe it would be possible to black out the sexual content of this book without marring the story.

posted by ssbookreviews on August 31, 2010

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Most Helpful Critical Review

1 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

Witless

In the past 25+ years of buying and reading all sorts of genre, I have only left two books unfinished: this was the second. I made it to page 296 before putting it down in dusgust. The storyline is disorganized, the characters are either cliche or witless, and the plo...
In the past 25+ years of buying and reading all sorts of genre, I have only left two books unfinished: this was the second. I made it to page 296 before putting it down in dusgust. The storyline is disorganized, the characters are either cliche or witless, and the plot-movers are ill-disguised with little reason for their happenstance. The storyline has a boy with an unknown mysterious past, a wannabe spy who's supposed to have incredible talent but makes mistake after common-sense mistake, a spymaster who has switched sides in an upcoming rebellion, and a patina of Roman Empire with all the purported backstabbing that entity had. The characters are pitiful. On the 'bad' guys, you have the following: The expert and cynical spymaster who thinks the change of rebellion cannot be stopped so he switches sides (a character development that would have been better played out over half the book, rather than in just the first chapter). The unbeatable swordsman, who has little passion except for his kinky affair with a 'witch', but kills because he's so good at it. The 'High Lord' leading the rebellion, who has lots of power but wants to be 'First Lord' just because he wants more power. On the 'good' side, you have the following: the boy with no parents who has a mysterious past, can't think much beyond the moment, and is just starting to turn his mind to mush over girls. The godfather figure of his uncle, who is supposed to be experienced, learned, and somewhat wise but who makes mistake after mistake and acts indecisively. The 'loyal' spy who's supposed to be a hot-shot rookie with loads of talent, but who can't take a step without being two steps behind the 'bad' guys. The only way the plot moves is through improbable results of stupid actions. Too many occur in the first 296 pages alone to list. Let's just say that too frequently does 'fate' step in to keep the characters alive after stupidity struck, and too frequently 'fate' conveniently (blatantly) steps in to make a situation even more stupidly convoluted just so that same 'fate' can later untangle it all. In other words, it's not the action or reasoning of the characters that cause things to happen (or not to happen), it pretty much happens just to be happening. I like Butcher's Dresden series, they're not great but they're okay - readable and enjoyable. I thought this would be written well enough to invest in....it's not. Don't waste the money on it if you have any wish for a read better than that intended for young teenagers.

posted by Anonymous on June 7, 2006

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  • Posted August 31, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Docked for Sexual Content

    What if everyone in your world had magical abilities except you? In Alera, where even lighting a lamp requires magic, Tavi is in just such a situation. When the realm falls under attack he has only his mind to help save himself, his family, and the whole of Alera.

    Furies of Calderon follows several characters through the web of conflict that threatens their lives. Overall the story is engaging and enjoyable, but can seem slow and overwhelming at the beginning due to the complexity of the world and situations you are thrown into. There are graphic violence scenes as well as some sexual content. While the sexual scenes are few and not significant to the story, they tend to focus on the characters feelings of "hot need."

    As far as a romping good tale goes, I would highly recommend this book, if you can get through the overwhelming nature of the first quarter. However, I have to dock it for sexual content that I do not feel adds positively to the characters, romance, or plot. It is entirely possible to do good clean romance without going beyond something I would feel comfortable with my son reading. I believe it would be possible to black out the sexual content of this book without marring the story.

    12 out of 19 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted May 10, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Could be a great series

    This first book in the Codex series is more of a historical book than an action packed sci-fi adventure. If you are new to reading a series take into consideration that you have to explain all the main characters and learn what this new world is and what is good and bad in it. I would strongly suggest reading the first 2 books in a series to see if you really do like it. You may end up saving yourself a lot of money by not buying them all or realize it is great and become a huge fan of the author and series. To me the book starts off a bit slow. The first half is about learning what the furies are, how they are used in society, who the key characters are, and their background drama. Once you hit the midway mark the action picks up. You get involved in the book. The hero in the book Tavi is a great character. He has strong morals, is very intelligent, clever, and an endearing young man. As the book builds momentum I found myself rooting for our hero big time. I look forward to the next book in the series to see how well the authors story continues and sets up for a long series. This was my first Jim Butcher book and I gave it a four star rating due to a very strong and happy ending. The great thing about this is it is not along the lines of Terry Goodkind or Robert Jordan or Tolkien which is great for a change. No wizards, mord sith, elf's, or sorceresses which of course abound in this genre. So I found it very refreshing to have a new world, with new magic's, and less wickedness. Jim seems to be pretty good at creating something unique and new to me. I recommend reading it if you are new or old to sci-fi fantasy. I enjoyed the adventure and can't wait to pick up the next one in the series. Happy reading all.

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 29, 2004

    Enthralling New Fantasy

    I haven't read anything else this author has written, but I must say his Codex Alera trilogy hooked me from the start. He has a nice, quick style and his characters are very well drawn. Most especially, he has a nice Roman flavoring and a new magic system in this world that I find refreshing and not like the usual fantasy novels people have been turning out these days. The only flaw I found in an otherwise wonderful book was how the villians seem to get killed and then brought back from the dead too easily. But then, so do the heroes, and since it is the start of a trilogy, I guess that's okay. You don't want to kill off too many major characters too quickly. A very promising book, I look forward to the next one.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 2, 2014

    right up there with John Ringo & David Weber

    right up there with John Ringo & David Weber

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  • Posted May 21, 2013

    Very interesting premise, lots of potential

    I'm a fan of Jim Butcher's other series, but the fantasy genre has some pretty stiff competition in it. I wouldn't go so far as to say that the first book in the series is destined to be a classic, but it's entertaining and the world is an interesting one. I like the different take on magic, here, and I look forward to reading more in the series.

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  • Posted January 11, 2013

    I Also Recommend:

    The story is well told but faces a certain difficulty: world-bui

    The story is well told but faces a certain difficulty: world-building. Butcher must build a world for you and get you to understand it without looking like he's building the world. It's not done too shabby, and if you can get through it, you will love the rest of the series.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 20, 2012

    good series

    I am currently on book 5 of this 6 book series and so far the action hasn't stopped. Great series but you must read them in order. Totally different than J. Butcher's other series. CMT

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  • Posted September 5, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Loved it!

    Great imagination!!!

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  • Posted March 15, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Furies of Calderon

    13. Furies of Calderon by Jim Butcher
    Genre: Fantasy
    Pages: 672
    Acquired: 3/2/10
    Book of Your Shelf? Yes
    Why I have/read it: Fantasy February
    Series: Codex Alera (1)

    Welcome to Alera, a kingdom vaguely reminiscent of Rome, even some of the names sound Roman. Alera is a kingdom filled with people who can control the elements with their furies. The stronger the fury, the more powerful the person's control, some are even able to control more than one fury.

    Amara is a cursor of Alera. A government official that is sent on a variety of different types of missions. Amara is a spy. During her most recent mission she stumbles into a hot bed of treason - a plot to kill the ruler, Quintus Sextus (see the Roman). A high ranking noble has allied himself with Alera's enemies.

    Tavi is a special boy. Raised in the outskirts of the kingdom as a shepherd, he is very unique. He doesn't have a fury yet, unheard of for someone his age. He doesn't let that stop him for doing his work and getting into trouble. His latest trouble is more than anyone would have ever expected. He finds himself thrown together with Amara trying to stop a war.

    I enjoyed the use of furies in the book. They were not made out to be all powerful being, but each one unique in personality, power, and weaknesses. The story threw a few surprise twists my way and at times was even a little political instead of all magic and fighting. The characters were just starting to show a lot of promise in their development when the book ended, so I'll have to pick up the next one to see what becomes of them.

    3.5/5

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  • Posted January 11, 2011

    Great Young Adult Reader!

    Series got better and better as the story progressed. Great twist and lessons in the series. This series introduced me to Jim Butcher's other series Dresden Files which I love.

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  • Posted February 20, 2010

    Great

    I like reading this story. It s different place in a different time.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 24, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    First time reader of Jim Butcher

    What a pleasant suprise! I enjoy reading Furies of Calderon and I am looking forword to the "rest of the story" in the next 6 books that are available. I liked the his characters, even the villians, and how he stayed on course and kept the story going. But....there's always a but, A map that is easy to read would be helpful. Many authors furnish maps that are not the least bit legible. All in all, I would definitly encourage others to try this book out..

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 24, 2009

    Fast paced & full of action

    I really enjoyed the newest series from Jim Butcher. I liked his main charactors, Tavi, his uncle Bernard & his Aunt. as well as they extroidinary powers they posses, but he does not. It makes for interesting dynamics between the charactors. The story moves along very quickly and there is a lot of action. This has the potential to really grow as Tavi does.

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  • Posted August 8, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Great series

    I loved the characters and the plot. A different and unique fantasy story. I could do without the romance of a couple of old people like Bernard. Thats why I gave it four stars instead of five. I have read the whole series and am waiting for First Lord Fury to be released. A fantastic story with a well written plot and cast of characters. A must read for fantasy lovers. Jim Butcher should have had a map for this series. I hate it when authors dont provide maps. The story becomes more real to me when im looking at a map...But, Oh well....ENJOY!!

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  • Posted May 11, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Furies

    I started reading this book almost immediately after finishing the 10th book of the Dresden series. I think that was a mistake as I was comparing the two.

    After I got past comparing to Dresden I found the book to be very engaging. It starts off slowly and takes almost to the end of the book to be fully engaged in the lives of Tavi, Isana, Bernard, Doroga, and the Aleran Realm. By the end of the 3rd book I am not able to put them down and am now anxiously awaiting the next, and presumbably last book in the series.

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  • Posted January 7, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Great Series

    I admit it was a little tough to get into at the beginning and I set the book aside. (in all fairness I had just gone through a huge reading phase and was probably burnt out a bit) when I picked it up again and gave it another go (I am a Jim Butcher Fan and love his dresden books) I got into it and loved it, like his dresden books, each book in the series gets better and better. The only thing I don't like is the one year wait between books when you finish the current release.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 18, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted October 25, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted December 29, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted January 13, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

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