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Its been so long since I ve read a straight fantasy that I ve almost forgotten what its like Don t get me wrong I love my urban fantasies, my romance fantasiesbut I miss my straight ones Glenda Larke is a favorite of mine from her Isles of Glory books of which I still haven t read book 3 , I d even put her on par with my enjoyment of the Mistborn books or Tredana books honestly.Stormlord starts out rather bleakly Terelle has a dark future ahead of her as a handmaiden in Madame Opal s snuggery As a handmaiden she s basically little better then a Geisha she is company for men, sings, dances, plays musical instruments but with the added duty of being a pleasing companion in bed as well Mind you she s only 12 years old, her father sold her into this life and her older half sister Vivie keeps telling her to suck it up and go with the flow.From there we head to where Nealrith, son of Granlon a cloudmaster, ie very important guy , is visiting the water cisterns with Kaneth, his friend Things are bad, the water levels being no where near where they should be The solutions presented by Kaneth are both impossible and morally black, but the options are few Is it better to be rid of a great many to save a few or should they all perish the same, slow, death There is a number of different intrigues going on politically, personally and wide spread Its not just that the water shortage problem is just now occurring, the problem is that its happening when there hasn t been enough Stormlords In the last decades only a handful or so of potentials have been born and through disease, death and inability none of them are suitable for the position.As one should expect from Larke s writing the narrative is lush with details The layers of society are pretty simple to understand, but the world itself is complex From the religion there is the Sunlord and the Raingiver both practical given the world and concerns to the social hierarchy the water sensitive you are, the better off you will be Larke weaves an intricate net of survival.I found myself liking Kaneth and Ryka despite some of my earlier misgivings Kaneth is something of a playboy, until recently not prone to overthinking matters or worrying over the future Current situations being what they are he s beginning to take a active stance Is it too late however Ryka is a bookish woman with a slightly bitter attitude towards men and Kaneth in general and marriage She is however someone you want beside you, she is intelligent, quick witted and thinks on her feet She s fiery as well, but that can sometimes be to her detriment.I am, of course, impatient to read the next volume With the North American release not until March 2010 cry with me and the subsequent volumes not being released until March and September 2010 in Australia, it feels like a loooong wait.I will say this, I like the Australian cover much then the US one I think it fits better The US Orbit cover looks kind of like Gail Z Martin s Necromancer cover and I don t think green is the best color to have. Wheee What a great read and a great tale This story has everything I love about epic fantasy A unique and well defined magic system Characters I could both love and hate A well written and fully realized world I could literally lose myself in Fantasy just doesn t get any better than this.Full Review Here @Free Pdf Ê The Last Stormlord ⚷ Shale Is The Lowest Of The Low An Outcast From A Poor Village In The Heart Of The Desert In The Desert Water Is Life, And Currency, And Shale Has None But He Has A Secret It S The One Thing That Keeps Him Alive And May Save All The Cities Of The Quartern In The Days To Come If It Doesn T Get Him Killed FirstTerelle Is A Slave Fleeing A Life As A Courtesan She Finds Shelter In The Home Of An Elderly Painter But As She Learns The Strange And Powerful Secrets Of His Art She Fears She May Have Traded A Life Of Servitude For Something Far PerilousThe Stormlord Is Dying In His Tower And There Is No One, By Accident Or Design, To Take His Place He Brings The Rain From The Distant Seas To His People Without A Stormlord, The Cities Of The Quartern Will Wither And Die Their Civilization Is At The Brink Of Disaster If Shale And Terelle Can Find A Way To Save Themselves, They May Just Save Them All Water Is Life And The Wells Are Running Dry This book is good In fact it is very, very good On the cover it says Glenda Larke is magical and she is The world she builds in this book is certainly magical one where water is not just the basis of life but is also daily currency, one where Storm Lords can raise clouds from the ocean and direct the rain to where it is needed and one where anyone who is water sensitive is automatically in a position of power.Such a great story and wonderful characters I cannot wait to find out what happens next book 2 here I come This book rocks It s adeptly written The world lives and breathes, as do the characters If I hadn t already set up the rest of my TBR list through the rest of the year, I d be going straight onto the next book In many ways, this first book is a coming of age story for the waterless boy who was once known only as Shale and for the almost courtesan Terrelle From the beginning, I was terrified the author would track into horrifying territory with the child courtesan, yet Terrelle deftly avoids her fate and winds up out of the frying pan and into the fire Or so it would seem And poor Shale s life is none too easy either The magic of the stormlords is intriguing, but even intriguing is the mysterious magic the water painters seem to have Unfortunately, most of those mysteries aren t revealed in this book, but you come to learn enough to whet your appetite for books This is also one of the best romantic subplots I ve ever seen, by which I mean, it doesn t do all the annoying stuff romance novels do Ryka and Kaneth s dialogue is so realistic, the conflict so tragic And yet it never overwhelms the main plot or steals focus from the actual story Nor are there any embarrassingly graphic love scenes to skim while reading in public I like to read on my lunch breaks, thankyouverymuch Torture warning There are a few graphic descriptions of an infant s death and a man being tortured But she kept the descriptions of the man s torture fairly contained compared to what she could ve done Oftentimes it s the other characters thinking about the dead injured and the aftermath that s gruesome No rape in this book, thankfully.Most of the plot resolves itself by the end, but yes, it s definitely a cliffhanger in many regards Not because plot lines are unresolved, but because even bigger wheels have begun to turn And you re left wondering whether certain secondary characters are still alive So if you absolutely hate cliffhangers, don t read this book until you have the second in hand. 5 stars What a book, what an amazing book This was a re read and I loved it just as much as I did the first time This, boys and girls, is how you do unique world building FRTC very soon I ve been staying away from Epic Fantasy novels for a number of years I look at the thick, one to two inch spines and return the book to my shelf I just didn t have the time nor the mental dexterity to keep track of a ton of characters, the history of the world, and the political wrangling like Game of Thrones, by George R.R Martin.I recently went on a vacation to the beach and I picked up my copy of The Last Stormlord, by Glenda Larke and put it in my suitcase I m so glad I did Yes, she has multiple characters and lots of politics, but I loved the main protagonists and was willing to read through all those lovely world building details because they were so fascinating In this world, the Stormlord takes water from the sea, forms clouds and sends it to one of the four quarters of the world, which would be a barren desert if not for the Stormlords, so they get rain to fill their wells and water their crops However, the last one is dying and the need to find a new one is becoming very urgent But there are others who think returning to the time of random rain will be better and these others are plotting to stop those efforts.In this world, water is critical and those who don t have any status are considered waterless and must beg and steal for water If you read this book, have a glass of water nearby the descriptions and the plight of the people made me thankful for the ease in which I can access water Of course this is the first book in a trilogy and I ve ordered the other two already They re hard to get so I have to wait a couple weeks If you like epic fantasy that s not as dense or as sad as Game of Thrones I d suggest you read this book you won t regret it 3.5Not sure whether I ll continue or not Unfortunately the characters I like the most are minor characters so I m not sure how much I ll see of the later on view spoiler One died too.so there s that hide spoiler Sometimes you find a fantasy novel that s not extremely original, but is so much plain fun to read that you just can t help but love it The Last Stormlord by Glenda Larke is one of those books despite using some recognizable fantasy templates, it s a great story and a book I found extremely hard to put down.Whenever the main character in a fantasy novel is poor and young, you can be almost certain that they re destined for great things later in the book or series The Last Stormlord uses this Ugly Duckling trope for not one but two main characters Terelle is a poor young maid in a snuggery an elegant euphemism for a brothel , who is looking desperately for escape because the next step in her career path is to become a prostitute Shale is a poor young boy growing up in a desert village, trying to hide his unique gift finding hidden water in the desert from his abusive father.Shale s gift is especially meaningful because in the Quartern, water is the most precious and valuable commodity The land depends on its Stormlord for rain he creates rain storms, and the water is collected in an elaborate system of pipes and cisterns that distribute it to the population The population relies on its leaders for their water rations and now the last Stormlord is dying.The Last Stormlord s perspective switches back and forth from Terelle to Shale to several rainlords who are trying to cope with the imminent water shortages in various ways, such as looking for a new stormlord, or finding new ways to stretch the limited water supplies e.g., cutting off the storms for specific parts of the land.Glenda Larke gradually reveals the novel s fantasy world as the story progresses first the established cities of the Scarpern quarter, then the primitive and poor Gibber lands where Shale grows up, later the Red Quarter and its nomadic Reduners, and towards the end the White Quarter and its mysterious Alabaster inhabitants, with even some hints about the lands beyond the Quartern There s only one noticeable infodump about the land s history, and it s short and or less integrated into the story The rest of the world s details are gracefully revealed to the reader throughout the story.The Last Stormlord is also extremely well paced, occasionally skipping a few weeks or months between chapters so the story keeps moving along at a pleasant pace You won t find 100 page descriptions of a single journey here this novel is basically all story and zero filler, so the pages just keep turning themselves I hope this pacing will continue in Stormlord Rising, the next book in The Watergiver trilogy.Plotting is at times a bit transparent and predictable, and a couple of characters have names that are truly cringe inducing, but despite those minor problems, this novel is easy to love With its smooth storytelling style that should go over very well with fans of Brandon Sanderson, and an overall theme water shortage and conservation that s acutely relevant in today s world how rare in a fantasy novel , The Last Stormlord is a tremendously entertaining read that s easy to get sucked into, hard to put down, and never boring Recommended This review was also published at the Fantasy Literature website www.fantasyliterature.com come check us out It s about justice And compassion And children dying And also about water Or rather a land without water and with a bloody power struggle It might be wrong to write this in the times of the climate change but this was just fun to read Just a perfect book for a hot summer I took The Last Stormlord on a whim sometimes this happens that it is neither the author nor the title or the cover art we have all fallen for that at least once, have we not but the book itself It just jumps out, off the shelf where it has been patiently sitting for months And you pick it up for no reason And start reading And this is it I picked the novel without any expectations, but having recently read the Stormwarden , I expected a similar story But if The Last Stormlord reminds me of any other book, it is City of Bones , an absolute favourite don t tell me you have not read it , that comes to mind It is mainly because of the world set in a desert y water deprived, sparsely inhabited and this mainly in the tiered cities which accumulate power and wealth on top and helpless poverty on the bottom This is as far as the parallels go The rest is refreshingly different and that was a pleasant surprise In this land, that depends on people who are sensitive to water, the last person with the ability to create storms and bring clouds with the life giving rain is old, and ailing, and has nobody to replace him Kind of a problem, we agree But those lofty problems seem to be far off from the leading protagonists Shale is just the lowest of the low waterless offspring of an abusive father, the resident drunk of the settlement on the fringes of the un civilised world good at making promises, but not good enough to keep them He will need to learn how to do this Terelle is different than everyone else she knows because she is able to cry real tears when grieving In a land where every drop of water is precious than blood and gold combined, this is something that really sets her apart As she fights against the future that challenged her childhood I loved this phrase, Ms Larke she discovers what is the meaning of her weeping Both protagonists are special but they are also crippled which makes them dependent which, in turn, renders them compelling.You might think that this will be the usual YA gig, but it is not Both MCs do a lot of growing up in this book and there are two in the trilogy The coming of age arc is only one of many others There are important elements like population control in the face of resource scarcity, social inequalities embedded in a rigid structure that disables mobility, cultural differences team Alabaster if you ask and prejudices, mysteries from the past and legends hoping for better future, and also conquests and love stories Not only they do some fast growing up, but also there are quite dark scenes and a lot of explicit content after all Terelle does grow up in a snuggery It is even pronounced given that the leading duo is accompanied by a whole host of grownups, of whom some have their own POVs I totally loved Ryka Feldspar Short sightedness and a scholarly mind, can you ask for No And also a soft spot for the most handsome male rainlord in the cohort This just must end with my favourite type of romanceTell me you have suddenly developed an overwhelming passion that necessitates a romantic proposal doused in the scent of orange blossom and I shall laugh in your faceOh well, yes, the antagonists I have forgotten There are two, you know, and even if you combined them into a one person, you d be hards pressed to find something unusual about them One is a cruel brute, the other one is power hungry schemer Or vice versa It does not really matter Any psychopath without feelings who only wears a mask of humanity will do Definitely a weak spot Regardless of the deficiencies, the ingenious worldbuilding, gripping story, and an important message in the background made up for a perfect read I promised myself I will read of Ms Larke in the future, and this is a promise I intend to keep Also in the series 2 Stormlord Rising 3 Stormlord s Exile RTC