Furies of Calderon

Furies of Calderon

by Jim Butcher

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Furies of Calderon (Codex Alera Series #1) 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 516 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I enjoy Butcher's Dresden Files series. However, to my mind the Codex Alera series is as different from Dresden as Tolkien's Lord of the Rings is from Buffy the Vampire Slayer. The Dresden files are written in the first person and set in the more-or-less real world. The Alera books, however, are third person point of view and switch between characters periodically. Also, the books are set in a fantasy world (Carna) with a Roman-influenced human empire surrounded by other, non-human races. There are fewer funny lines than in the Dresden Files books, but this book builds an entire world with an interesting and original magic system. I read all 440 pages of this in roughly 24 hours - I started it before work, and wound up reading it during breaks and late into the night after work. I actually liked this better than the Dreden Files because of the shifting viewpoint and the original world-building in it. Although this is the beginning of a series, Butcher doesn't leave the storyline of this book unresolved. Instead, the further books in the series pick up new and different threads using the foundation laid here.
Candace885 More than 1 year ago
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.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I was afraid to read this book as in my experience when an author branches off and tries to invent a new set of characters too many parallels can be drawn between books and it becomes a same old same old. I was very pleased that Mr Butcher brought new characters out of the bag and i really enjoyed this book and am looking forward to the next two. The only parallels i can draw between Codex Alera and Dresden Files is full of action, well developed characters and cant put it down! Not Witless at all!
Guest More than 1 year ago
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.
Wiz54 More than 1 year ago
I don't often read fantasy fiction, I'm more mainstream. But I love a good story that is well told. My son recommended this (along with his girlfriend) so I thought I'd try it as a change of pace. Butcher's prose is tight and engrossing. I could go on, but I realized two things. A great book is one that you begin to read, turn the page and realize an hour has gone past, your 50+ pages into the book it seems you just sat down a minute ago. Second, I want to get started reading the Second book of the series. This one kept me awake long after my normal bedtime.
enviromommy More than 1 year ago
The first 2 chapters were a bit confusing, it took me some time to understand the language of the fantasy world the author created. Once everything became clear I could not put the book down. I am now on the 3rd book of this series and intend to read them all. Each one is better than the last.
ssbookreviews More than 1 year ago
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.
Anonymous 5 months ago
Anonymous 5 months ago
Great read and action without end, I will be reading the next part in a few days!
Anonymous 8 months ago
crop on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
A refreshing bit of fantasy that totally sucked me in from the author of the Dresden Files series. The way magic is handled is totally brilliant and well realized. While there are clear protagonists and antagonists, all have believable points of view and motivation, so there is conflict without clear-cut good vs. evil. The whole thing left me wanting to run a role-playing game in this world, but not really seeing which system to use for it (Anima Prime comes close, but can't do some of what happens in the books). I'm already reading the second one.
terriko on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Jim Butcher's foray into Swords-and-magic Fantasy is good, but I found it strangely slow at times when compared to the Dresden Files. I guess when you're building a whole world that no one's ever seen, you need to spare a lot more time for description and exposition about the politics, the races, the magic. Often the first book of a series is a bit bogged down as a result of this, and I expect the later books to move faster. Still, an interesting story, world and cast of characters, and I'm looking forwards to the rest of the series.
fyrefly98 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Summary: The Calderon Valley has been peacefully isolated from the concerns of the Aleran Empire since the last battle between the Alerans and the warrior tribesmen of the Marat, over fifteen years ago. The High Lord's son was killed in that battle, and as Gaius Sixtus ages, the power of his line has dwindled. When a young messenger/spy in training, Amara, is betrayed by her mentor and discovers a plot against the High Lord, she is sent to the Calderon Valley to protect the interests of the Empire. Meanwhile, two inhabitants of the valley, Tavi, an orphaned and apparently magic-less young man, and Bernard, his uncle, are out gathering in a stray flock of sheep when they encounter and narrowly escape from Marat scouts - a strong sign that another invasion is brewing. Now it seems that once again, the Calderon Valley will be a focal point in the history of the Aleran Empire.Review: This book felt like it took me forever to get through, primarily because I never found myself particularly compelled to turn it on and listen to more. It wasn't bad, per se, but it also never really captured my imagination or got me involved in the story. Partly, this was because it's a story that I've heard before. It took me a while to realize it, since the beginning of the book is focused on Amara's story, but Furies of Calderon is pretty much a straight pigboy parable (i.e. orphaned boy of mysterious parentage lives on his uncle's farm until the agents of evil come to attack them, at which point he must flee because it turns out he's the only one with the power to save the world, etc.) That on its own wouldn't be a problem; I've read and loved plenty of books that follow the general pigboy storyline. But Butcher is also not particularly subtle with his plotting; at 1/3 of the way through this book, I'd already guessed who Tavi's parents were... a plot point that's not even revealed until later in the series. (I checked with a friend who has read them all, and she confirmed that I was right.) Knowing more or less how the entire series was going to go effectively put a damper on any narrative tension that Butcher might otherwise have built. Again, the book's not terrible, just not a standout. The system of magic - manipulating various kinds of elemental spirits called furies - is not particularly novel, but is used to good effect, particularly in fight scenes, and has some very creative possibilities. The characters, while largely archetypal, at least behave and interact believably. Butcher also writes action well, and there's a definite sense that the fight scenes are his favorite thing to write, given how lively and quick-moving they are compared to some of the rest of the plot. But no matter how good certain elements are, they're unlikely to be good enough to rescue my enjoyment of the book if I'm not engaged with the characters or the story... which in this case, I just wasn't. 3 out of 5 stars.Recommendation: This may be better for folks who gravitate towards action rather than intricate plotting in their high fantasy, or for those who are less jaded then I am when it comes to fantasy orphans and their various destinies.
elbakerone on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Furies of Calderon by Jim Butcher introduces the reader to fifteen-year-old Tavi, who is somewhat of an anomaly in his village due to his lack of furycrafting - the ability to bond with and control an elemental of earth, air, fire, water, wood or metal. Tavi's village soon comes under attack by a barbarian tribe and the boy more than makes up for his strange lack of furies with an excess of resourcefulness and clever wit. Where he could have emerged as a stereotypical pig-boy of a protagonist, he is instead likable and charming - a character for whom the reader can not resist cheering.True to Jim Butcher's style, the barbarian attack is not even close to the only point of action driving the story. Politics amidst the leaders in the villages (including Tavi's uncle and aunt) have tensions running high and Amara, a woman on assignment from the First Lord of the land becomes embroiled in the drama while trying to sort out treachery and betrayal among her own compatriots. Multiple storylines are woven together brilliantly and Butcher's meticulous details are never extraneous - actions, motives, thoughts, and emotions for the entire cast of characters complement each other seamlessly. Furies of Calderon is the first in Butcher's Codex Alera series. If the subsequent Alera books are as good as the first, this is a series with the potential to outshine Butcher's more well-known (and also highly enjoyable) Dresden Files.
crazybatcow on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Little more childish than what I usually like to read in my fantasy/urban fantasy novels. I like them dark and non-moralistic. This is non-moralistic, but not very dark - perhaps it's for an adolescent audience? Anyway, ain't for me.I read another review which said it was a coming of age story - wish I had seen that before attempting to read this... not much interests me less than reading about some boy's adventure as he "finds himself" in the world, even if that world has some elemental fairies.Not dark enough, not mature enough, not urban enough for me. I want them to fight and f---, not galavant around on the wings of the wind.
Mulebarn on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
It has been a LONG time since I read this type of fantasy and I really enjoyed it - Am ready to begin Book 2 in the series.A great read; well written, great characters and lots of action.
willowcove on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This is a GREAT series with a new 'power' twist.
jasmyn9 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
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.
TigerLMS on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Tavi is a simple farm boy in Bernardholt stead, where his Uncle Bernard is the steadholder and his Aunt Isana (Bernard's sister) keeps a firm grasp on the business of running the ranch. Nearly everyone in the valley has a fury, or a particular brand of magic that allows them special talents. Bernard is a woodcrafter, Isana a watercrafter. To Tavi's endless shame, he has no furies. He wants to attend the Academy, but has no money and no sponsor. His hope of herding his Uncle's sheep to save cash for the Academy fails miserably when he leaves a flock outside overnight, setting in motion the series of events that start the series. The valley is about to be attacked by the Marat, a dangerous breed that hasn't been in the valley since they were last repelled more than 15 years before. Amara is a cursor on special assignment from the royal crown, and she and Tavi wind up in a race to save the valley from almost sure defeat. Butcher tells a good tale, and once I really dove into the book and got to know the characters and the setting I enjoyed it quite a bit. That's from someone who doesn't particularly care for the fantasy genre-- so I anticipate that this will have wider appeal than true fantasy buffs. It's one I'll certainly recommend to high school students who enjoy reading.
stefferoo on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This was my first taste of Jim Butcher, though in retrospect I think I should have started with his Dresden Files instead, which seems to be his forte. The first book of his Codex Alera fantasy series just very conventional to me. I didn't hate it, but I can't say I fell in love with it either.The story itself was pretty standard fantasy fare and predictable, but I have to credit the novel for a rather unique magic system. In this world, people form special relationships with elementals called furies, which give them special powers to manipulate the elements surrounding them, as well as others' thoughts and emotions.I think this provides a good basis for the series, and at some point I will continue with it, if only to find out what the deal is with Tavi. Seemingly an average shepherd boy, but you as the reader just know his mysterious past will come to the forefront at some point and he will have an important role in the world.
les121 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
So far, I like the Dresden Files better, but this book was certainly entertaining and enjoyable. I love that the plot actually managed to surprise me, and I will definitely continue reading this series to find out what happens next.
Skribe on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Boy did this book fall apart fast. It started nicely with plenty of potential and I was rooting for it. I like author Jim Butcher from the genuinely funny first-person narrative and intelligent mystery plotting over in the Harry Dresden books and was hoping for good things here, but then a whole dominance/submission thing kicked in and I just checked out. The tone changed completely. It had been reminding me of an adventure book I might have enjoyed when I was 15, and suddenly the author's... predilections were all up front. And it wasn't pretty: magic slave collars, women washing feet, threatening groups of faceless men... You know the drill. It felt like those manga that skew to a specific taste and are required to have a certain kind of scene at set intervals. Also, the plot promised some interesting social upheaval based on the power structure of a Furies concept: creatures of power that everyone is able to manipulate to varying degrees. EVERYONE in the society, great or small, is able to wield powerful elemental magic. Think of the potential for a completely alien approach to empire building. But no, it deteriorates into extended battle sequences that go on and on for pages and pages.And finally, it's Jim Butcher without a sense of humor. What happened, Jim?
MusketGeneral on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
A pretty good coming of age fantasy story. It is comparable to David Eddings Belgariad series. I have a sneaking suspicion that the main character,Tavi,is much more than an orphan boy but I will hold back from stating them.J. Butcher did a great job setting his world with most humans being able to bond with an element called Furies. The book is filled with many battles scenes perhaps too many but all in all it is a great story and a good concept.
SockMonkeyGirl on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This is Jim Butcher's other series and it is really nothing like the Dresden files. And I'll tell you a secret: I like it better than Dresden. Shhh! Don't tell. But as a bigger fan of fantasy epics than urban fantasy, this series hits all my favorite points. It stars Tavi, a young man who is the only person in his whole world without the type of magic that everyone else has. What Tavi does have is brains and determination and the ability to survive. If you like Jim Butcher's writing, alternate Roman history (with added magic), or just a solid fantasy series, check this one out.
EowynA on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This is in the "Codex Alera" series. I have enjoyed this author's Dresden files books, and am surprised at how much more I am enjoying this series. He has created a pseudo-medieval world in which most people command an elemental fury, or maybe even more than one. Our hero, Tavi, however, is without a fury, and must make do with his wits and skill. And still he cheats death. His family is an appealing one, and the author makes us care for each member -- then he splits them up and has us follow each one into danger. In the "Furies of Calderon," we meet the Cursor Alera (combination messenger and spy) and her mentor. They have adventures before she finally meets Tavi, the apprentice shepherd boy, and we start to follow his story and that of his uncle and aunt. The danger is great, with consequences to their own steadhold and to the entire Kingdom if they fail. The action barely pauses, even for a moment. Highly Recommended.