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The Runelords: The Sum of All Men (Runelords Series #1) [NOOK Book]

Overview


The first book of the saga of The Runelords

Young Prince Gaborn Val Orden of Mystarria is traveling in disguise on a journey to ask for the hand of the lovely Princess Iome of Sylvarresta. Armed with his gifts of strength and perception, Prince Gaborn and his warrior bodyguard stop in a local tavern along the way. Immediately, they spot a pair of assassins who have their sights set on Princess Iome's father. As the prince and his bodyguard ...
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The Runelords: The Sum of All Men (Runelords Series #1)

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Overview


The first book of the saga of The Runelords

Young Prince Gaborn Val Orden of Mystarria is traveling in disguise on a journey to ask for the hand of the lovely Princess Iome of Sylvarresta. Armed with his gifts of strength and perception, Prince Gaborn and his warrior bodyguard stop in a local tavern along the way. Immediately, they spot a pair of assassins who have their sights set on Princess Iome's father. As the prince and his bodyguard race to warn the king of this impending danger, they realize that more than the royal family is at risk, the very fate of the Earth is in jeopardy.

At the publisher's request, this title is being sold without Digital Rights Management software (DRM) applied.


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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
A developer of properties for the gaming industry and a science fiction author (Star Wars: The Courtship of Princess Leia) under his real name, Dave Wolverton, Farland once again proves himself a wizard at storytelling in this third installment of his epic fantasy series, The Runelords. Against a medieval-like diorama, Farland has established a social system around the magical exchange of "endowments" from vassals to lords. A Runelord might have thousands of endowments, acquiring attributes (vision, strength, stamina, beauty, grace, wit) from willing donors, who become weakened Dedicates, crippled by the loss yet a Runelord must care for those who make his superhuman abilities possible. The Runelords: The Sum of All Men (1998) introduced Mystarrian prince Gaborn Val Orden, a Runelord who battled the powerfully endowed, near-invincible Wolf Lord Raj Ahten. With Gaborn newly crowned Earth King, defeated archvillain Ahten renewed his attacks in Brotherhood of the Wolf (2000). Now Ahten, Gaborn and Gaborn's wife, Iome, return to face the Reavers, huge monsters with "crystalline teeth like scythes" that pose a grim threat to Ahten's empire. In his role as "mankind's protector," Gaborn, despite dwindling powers, senses the impending doom of an all-out Reaver war, and Averan, a wizardborn girl with magical insights into Reaver consciousness, aids his hunt for the creature hordes. This latest is certain to summon past readers of the series back to bookstores. (Apr. 23) Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
VOYA - Bonnie Kunzel
This new fantasy series features an unusual world where magic is used to drain willing (and not so willing) donors of various endowments such as beauty, strength, brawn, wit, sight, voice, and hearing. Hot branding irons with the appropriate rune are applied to the donor in an excruciatingly painful process. Once the "gift" has been extracted, the same iron is applied to the Runelord, but in this case it is a pleasurable, almost orgasmic experience. Once drained, the donors become helpless Dedicates who must be preserved and protected by their Runelord because their gifts can only be used while they are alive. When the novel opens, Prince Gaborn Val Orden of Mystarria is in love with princess Iome. Before Gaborn can court her, however, fate intervenes in the person of Raj Ahten, the Wolf Lord of Indhopal. Ahten invades with a force of thousands, including sixteen-foot-tall frost giants, ape-like nomen, and invincible warriors (each possessing numerous endowments). Ahten's own rune-covered body reveals that he has been the recipient of hundreds of endowments, and his goal is to become like the famed "Sum of All Men," conquering neighboring kingdoms and leading a united force against the deadly reavers who threaten their way of life. All that stands between Ahten and victory is the youthful Gaborn, the Earth King newly appointed by the wizard Binnesman. Gaborn was crowned by Erden Geboren himself, leader of the spirits of the Dunnwood, who comes with his spectral army to fight against the Wolf Lord's armies. This rich, complex page-turner features a likeable protagonist and a fascinating new fantasy world. There is a satisfying resolution, but with (thank heavens) plenty of room for more to come. Good cover art will attract teen readers and the text will certainly not disappoint them. VOYA Codes: 5Q 4P S A/YA (Hard to imagine it being better written, Broad general YA appeal, Senior High-defined as grades 10 to 12 and adults).
Library Journal
Prince Gaborn's visit to the Kingdom of Heredon becomes a frantic race against time as he seeks to warn Heredon's royal family of the approach of an invincible warlord whose might threatens to consume the world. Farland launches his epic series with a powerful story of a prince's transformation from a Runelord who steals his abilities from others to a ruler dedicated to the preservation of life. The author's inventive approach to magic and his skill at depicting complex, believable characters make this tale a good choice for most fantasy collections.
Kirkus Reviews
Another doorstopper fantasy series is launched, this one with a boiler-plate medieval-style backdrop and a well-developed system of magic. The ruling aristocratic Runelords accept "endowments"—magical enhancements of voice, brawn, wit, grace, etc.—from contributors called Dedicates, who thereupon become helpless (a Dedicate who donates his wit, for example, becomes feeble-minded) and must be cared for by the Runelord. Endowments are made via "forcibles," these resembling magical branding irons that absorb the endowment and then burn it into the Runelord's flesh. Prince Gaborn of Mystarria is visiting Sylvarresta in order to ask for the hand of Princess Iome when news arrives of an invasion by the Wolf Lord Raj Ahten. The latter, having taken hundreds of endowments, has grown so powerful that he captures Castle Sylvarresta without a fight. King Sylvarresta is deprived of his wits, while Iome must yield up her glamour. And by forcing the defeated Sylvarrestans to yield hundreds more endowments, Raj Ahten draws closer to being transformed into the godlike immortal Sum of All Men. Gaborn, assisted by the powerful Earth wizard Binnesman, evades capture while studying a book that may contain the secret of how to defeat Raj Ahten; and he swears a terrible oath to protect Iome, then another to serve the living Earth. Gaborn's father, Orden, gathers an army at Castle Longmot to defy Raj Ahten's frowth giants, flameweavers, and nomen, but after a terrible struggle Raj Ahten defeats Orden in single combat and razes Longmot by the power of his Voice alone. So Gaborn, the new Earth King, must find a way to defeat or dissuade Raj Ahren. A bloody, violent, grim saga, with thoughtfullydevised magics, and, despite rather anonymous characters, a well-turned plot: overall, reasonably satisfying and involving.
From the Publisher
Praise for The Runelords

"This rich, complex page-turner features a likeable protagonist and a fascinating new fantasy world."

VOYA

"The intriguing hook behind Farland's first novel—and launch of a new fantasy series—is a complex magical technology whereby abilities such as wit, brawn and stamina are transferable from person to person. The magic is basic to Farland's story, not just painted on, and it and the society in which it plays out are rigorously and imaginatively elaborated."

Publishers Weekly

"A bloody, violent, grim saga, with thoughtfully devised magics, and a well-turned plot: overall, reasonably satisfying and involving."

Kirkus Reviews

"Farland gets a prospective series off to a dynamic start with a compelling, action-packed story set in an intricate created world in which magical powers are unusual and convincing."

Booklist

"The author's inventive approach to magic and his skill at depicting complex, believable characters make this tale a good choice for most fantasy collections."

Library Journal

"A new series, set in a world of mages and earth wardens, kings and knights equitable, glamors and Voices, endowments and Dedicates, force horses and reavers. Swords flash. Cruelty abounds. Men and women obey their lords and die for it, or worse, do deeds so terrible they cannot bear to live with them. [Farland] explores the very nature of virtue and finds disturbing contradictions at the heart of every moral question. Good men and women find themselves serving evil for good reasons; people who long served evil waken and discover their honor. Love can be noble and self-sacrificing; it can be lusty and filled with pleasure.

"When I reached the end of this first volume, The Runelords, and saw grace arise from a devastating battlefield where too many great hearts lay dead, Farland had earned the tears that came to my eyes. It was not sentiment but epiphany."

—Orson Scott Card, author of The Seventh Son

"The Runelords is a first rate tale, an epic fantasy that more than delivers on its promise. Read it soon and treat yourself to an adventure you won't forget."

—Terry Brooks

"In The Runelords David Farland has created a vivid, detailed, different world that becomes perfectly believable. The characters are real, the action fast, and the sum a brilliant and engrossing novel."

—David Drake, author of The Lord of the Isles

"With The Runelords, David Farland breaks new ground in fantasy fiction and wakes up anyone who thought they'd read everything the genre had to offer.

Definitely a new name to watch in the field."

—Kevin J. Anderson

"David Farland is a consummate stylist, and his characters are so alive they walk right off the page. The Runelords is a wonderful fantasy novel."

—Robert J. Sawyer

Orson Scott Card
"When I reached the end...and saw grace arise from a devastating battlefield...It was not sentiment but epiphany."
Booklist
"Farland gets a prospective series off to a dynamic start with a compelling, action-packed story."
Terry Brooks
"The Runelords is a first rate tale, an epic fantasy that more than delivers on its promise."
David Drake
"A vivid, detailed, different world that becomes perfectly believable....A brilliant and engrossing novel."
Kevin J. Anderson
"Farland breaks new ground in fantasy and wakes up anyone who thought they'd read everything the genre had to offer."
Robert J. Sawyer
"The Runelords is a wonderful fantasy novel."
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781429911962
  • Publisher: Tom Doherty Associates
  • Publication date: 4/1/2007
  • Series: Runelords , #1
  • Sold by: Macmillan
  • Format: eBook
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 624
  • Sales rank: 73,442
  • File size: 4 MB

Meet the Author


David Farland is the author of the bestselling Runelords series, including Chaosbound, The Wyrmling Horde and Worldbinder. He also writes science-fiction as David Wolverton. He won the 1987 Writers of the Future contest, and has been nominated for a Nebula Award and a Hugo Award. Farland also works as a video game designer, and has taught writing seminars around the U.S. and Canada. He lives in Saint George, Utah.
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Table of Contents

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 64 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(40)

4 Star

(13)

3 Star

(6)

2 Star

(2)

1 Star

(3)

Your Rating:

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 64 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 27, 2011

    5 Star Book IMHO

    One of my favorite books. I liked how his logic was incorporated into some of his characters as well as the way the story went. It is nice to have a book where the main character isn't an airhead.

    Warning, If you like a clear cut definition of good and evil in your books you may not like this one or the series. Furthermore if you do not like the type of logic that suggest that everyone has the capacity for good and evil or the logic that causes you to actually think about the characters motives this book may not be for you either.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 1, 2013

    An adventure worth reading

    Oddly enough, for me, this book alternated between i cant put it down and i can hardly pick it up. You just hate to see what ills befall your favorite characters but you also cant help but hang in anticipation for the next chace or the next challenge. All in all, i loved every minute of it. Well done.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 17, 2013

    Bchgijjhhobubkuv. Jugkh

    Gjcgvgchgyufkoycuv

    0 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 19, 2012

    Really good

    Really refreshing story. Brings back memories from when i was younger and was real big into reading still. A truely epic saga a honest MUST read!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted June 5, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Not Impressed

    This book was Kind of disappointing to me. It was hard for me to get into it and i actually didn't even finish it. I read all the reviews and went and bought it. The characters were okay the love story was good but not enough to make me want to read more.

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 15, 2009

    If One is Good, the Series is Better

    I enjoyed this book so much that I went out and bought the rest of the series. It was thrilling escapism. I read it in 2 days, and enjoyed every minute.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 22, 2006

    The Runelords

    This is a book that I could never put down after reading the first fifty pages. Once I stepped into Farland's creative imagination, I couldn't help but want more. I've read all of the books in this saga and I could tell you that I was never disappointed at all. I've given the Runelord books to many of my friends and I strongly suggest that you read these breathtaking stories. I can promise you that you will not be disappointed.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 27, 2006

    I love it!

    I freakin love this series!! As everyone else has said, it is so original and unique, I couldn't put the book down. I'm not the biggest sci-fi fan, so for me to love this, means a lot. I definitely recommend it!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 1, 2006

    Original and Fascinating

    The runelords is just a book I picked up because I was bored and it looked good and im happy to tell you it was a great book. Runelords takes place around a young prince who is going to marry the nearby princess. But during all of this a evil sorcerer who is nearly invicible starts war.. An epic fantasy about love, war, and kings, Runelords is definitly original and encaptivating storytelling make this a huge sucess. Email me if you want to talk about books I read most fantasy and Sci-Fi

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 21, 2005

    Unique and Amazing

    This was a wonderful book to read. It flowed smoothly and the characters were wonderfully crafted. One of the best books I have read in several months, on level with The Lord of the Rings and The Wheel of Time .

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 4, 2005

    Flippin Sweet!

    The Runelords book series is simply the best series in the world. When I finished the last book of the series i was almost depressed that i was done reading the series. Since then i have read each book in the series multiple times and enjoyed every single time. If u like fantasy then come buy this book. It's worth it.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 6, 2004

    one of the best

    Farland by far has created a deeply captivating tale that will keep readers up all night and day. Definitely true for the rest of the series as well.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 11, 2002

    The best book ever

    Here a captivating and and exciting story about the trials and tribulations of Gaborn Val Orden, and other subjects of Rofehaven. I absolutely loved this book, and I just bought Brotherhood of the wolf. David Farland is an awe inspiring writer.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 21, 2002

    A good read, but short of an Epic tale

    The Rulelord series thus far has been an above avarage read with an original magical universe where anyone can becoe powerfull. Farland has clearly set out to write an epic tale, however the plot falls short of the many pathed branching that we have come to expect from Jordan and others... still a good read.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 29, 2002

    origioanl, great book

    David Farland's has created an entire New World with the use of the magic using dedicates and taking upon the attributes of others was incredibly fascinating, and completely original to anything else that I have read. I recommend this series for anyone who loves fantasy.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 19, 2002

    Praise the EarthBorn

    Great book. It is the perfect tale, though a little slow in the begginning. This is a tale of fun, peril, runelords and pyscotic warlords who believe the only way to save the people was to imprison and destroy the people. I am in the phase of buying Brotherhood, And I am sure it will be the best that it can be

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 16, 2001

    Farland- excellent writer

    Great story with fast action. I enjoy reading medieval inspired books, and this book topped Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time series. A must for an avid fantasy reader.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 6, 2001

    Interesting, but faulty

    The system of magic--the transfer of dedicates to make true superhumand--is extermely interesting and fraught with tension. However, I found it to be largely unexploited. Rather than a terse acknowledgement of a sect of people who disagree with such a system (and only one sect at that!) there is not much treatment on the subject other than the experience of Gaborn. A society based upon such a thing should have a vast and intricate economy and political structure, not merely a ruling class and a willing public with small and seemingly mute adverse sect. Also, while Farland has some skill at writing, I never found myself truly inspired by any of the characters involved. That a lacked a reality and remained flat throughout the storyline. They suffer when the plot makes them suffer, triumph when the plot makes them triumph, and in general seem to get swept along by the story rather than the reverse. Read it for the interesting magical diversion, but I think you'll find that in thinking of the magic you'll more often be speculating further on what that society would look like rather than mulling over the events of the book.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 7, 2001

    Definetly enjoyable!

    It has taken me months to read this book but, I enjoyed every minute of it. It is really rare for me to find a book I like. This book really got my attention.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 20, 2000

    The start of a FANTASTIC series

    What a GREAT story!! The magic in this book outshines just about ANYTHING in print today no matter HOW imaginative. This one takes the cake. The idea of taking 'attributes' from others, such as brawn, wisdom and eyesight, and transferring them to yourself was incredibly interesting to me, and as I continued to read, it became completely and totally facinating. David Farland has written an exceptional fantasy story that has the incredible potential for a great continuing series (which I LOVE) and as long as the series moves onward with a plot as entertaining as this one, he'll see a very positive response for several years to come. Some have announced Farland as Jordan's successor, however I would say that Jordan holds no crown to pass down since I have never been able to enjoy the 'Wheel of Time' series beyond a few books that were just 'okay' at best. I would be more inclined to compare 'The Runelords' to Terry Brooks or Terry Goodkind (whether or not you like these guys, I DO) because as different as they are in style and plotting, I STILL enjoyed them very much. Give 'The Runelords' a shot and you might be surprised at how much you look forward to the sequel (which I might add is as good if not better than the original...) and if THAT intrigues you (and if it doesn't you are just brain dead) go for the 3rd book--which comes out beginning of next year as I understand it. Congratulations to Mr. Farland on a great concept and a totally captivating storyline. It really IS worth your time.

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 64 Customer Reviews

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