[[ kindle ]] Inda Author Sherwood Smith – 91videos.co

This is my first time reading anything by Sherwood Smith and I picked this up largely due to Sam s Novels and Nonsense recommendation I didn t have a clue what this was about and from looking at the cover I actually thought that the main character was a girl named Inda, however it s a young boy named Inda who we follow in this book, and his tale is certainly an interesting one.One thing that this book does excellently is craft a unique, complex yet intriguing world In this world we have multiple races of people and multiple languages being spoken not only by different races, but by our main characters The Iascans are the race that we follow a lot of the characters from and they live in the Sartoran Continent in the Iasca Leror s Empire They speak Iascan by day and when socialising with one another, but the royalty and nobility also have another language called Marlovan and this is considered the language of war Thus some of the characters within this are considered Marlovan even though they re also Iascan a little confusing at first but it makes sense as you go through Within the book the two languages spoken give different meanings to certain things For example, during times of war the King takes on a Marlovan title which indicates that it is a time of war This aspect of the story and world was one that I thoroughly enjoyed learning, understanding and adjusting to as it was so unique and exciting As for the characters the main character is clearly Inda whom we meet as a young boy of 8 and follow over a fair few years of his life He s the son of a Prince and Princess and therefore, although not the heir to the throne exactly, he s very important politically He s a sweet young boy who has to go into some tricky situations, and he deals well with them I thought that Sherwood Smith handled the ageing and maturing of Inda truly very well, and it had a very realistic feeling to the character which I loved Inda was by far one of the best characters and most memorable as he s at the centre of a fair amount of the action, however we also follow other storylines too.Other characters worth noting are Dogpiss a joker and comedian who gives everyone a laugh and a good time and who s storyline is rocky ups and downs in a good way Tandrid the older brother to Inda and a seemingly nasty character to begin, but one who grows on you the customs of older younger brother relationships within this book are very interesting so he s not all bad or good Tdor who is a young girl destined to marry Inda and betrothed to him from birth, she s a feisty and wilful character with a strong sense for truth about her and I liked her clear headed thinking Sponge second son of the King and a very enticing character with a wonderful head for books and scrolls, he s a charm from the start and another character who s development was excellent Hadand sister to Tanrid and Inda and another level headed and kind hearted soul and finally although I could mention many Tau whom we meet in the second half of the book and who is a very likeable and mysterious character.The plot of this story is not too dissimilar from that of Blood Song by Anthony Ryan at least at the beginning and so maybe this was a source of inspiration for that, and if you like the relationships and format of that you ll probably also enjoy this I d certainly say it has very similar vibes to that, and if you like it I d recommend this One thing to mention quickly is that this has an omniscient narrator which means some sections switch perspective in the middle of a large chunk of text so you do need to check you re still following the right person I didn t find this to be a major problem much, but on occasion I needed to skim back to double check I was following the right character I liked the outside perspective on this and whilst the plot wasn t fantastically fast paced a lot of very interesting stuff happen both politically and in terms of character development.I will be picking up book 2 in the future whenever I get the chance too as I m intrigued by the ending and I want to know about Inda Overall this was a very enjoyable and somewhat unique read so I would say a solid 4 s and a book I d recommend As always let me know what you thought of the book Read for my 2018 women of speculative fiction challenge.Nothing is always, my dear Except the greater truths, one of which is that power begets politics, and politics are dangerous than war because there are fewer rules We ll be discussing Sherwood Smith s 2006 epic fantasy Inda today Spoilers follow So What s It About Indevan Algara Vayir was born the second son of a powerful prince, destined to stay at home and defend his family s castle But when war threatens, Inda is sent to the Royal Academy where he learns the art of war and finds that danger and intrigue don t only come from outside the kingdom.What I ThoughtNow joining the ranks of The Broken Crown and King s Dragon, we have before us another case of a perfectly solid epic fantasy that I struggled with because I m simply terrible at remembering large amounts of world building It s not you, epic fantasy It s me The specific form that my struggle took with this book was an utter inability to keep all the boys of the Academy straight You guys, there are just so many boys And you have to remember their nicknames, their family names, their family allegiances and why they re constantly fighting with each other If you have a dumb brain like I do, the sheer multitude of boys and boy fights may pose a challenge in enjoying the first half of Inda.The good news is that the second half of the book largely takes place away from the Academy, and I ended up enjoying and understanding the book much when it wasn t exclusively focused on the politics of the Academy And while I struggled with the family politics, I can absolutely say that the world building shines in this book It s a fully realized world full of meticulous history, societal structures and some truly fascinating little touches I particularly loved the commonplace, practical uses of magic such as birth and waste spells, which respectively allow you to get pregnant without sleeping with anyone and magically vanish your waste without having to go to the bathroom I also loved the hints of wildness and magic that have to do with the deadly magical realm of Norsunder and creatures that live in caves and under the sea Inda also shines as an examination of the effects of a militarized society We see the way that the Sierdanael is obsessed with achieving his own personal glory and victory and is willing to drag the entire country into war just to achieve it We see the ways that Dogpiss and Inda s lives are entirely destroyed because they represent a threat to the Sierdanael s power, and because two boys lives are expendable in the pursuit of consolidated power We see the way that boys are raised constantly getting beaten by their older siblings as though it is perfectly naturalIt s a bad way to train, Dun said, his tone serious I didn t see it until I got away This tradition of boys beating boys in the families of rank, one day it s going to cause big problems Finally, that devaluation of life is apparent in the Sierlaef s belief that he can simply kill Tanrid to get what he wants namely, Joret I think the Sierlaef is one of the most interesting characters I ve encountered in a long time, because you can so clearly see how his cruelty and frustration stem from his learning and speech disabilities and how incapable he feels as a prince and he is so clearly manipulated into his misdeeds and further entitlement by his uncle.The F WordWhat is really interesting about the situation with the Sierlaef and Joret is that it s ultimately revealed that generations ago women with magic selectively killed sexual predatorsThey killed sexual predators until that instinct was eliminated from humankind I m not sure how I feel about this I don t agree with the idea that being a sexual predator is simply an instinctive trait that could ever be bred out of people I don t know that we can ever separate instinct from the cultural s that facilitate and encourage sexual aggression and entitlement in some people and not others, and the way that sexual violence is an expression of power and control And if these women could breed out sexually predatory behavior, why would they not also breed out the Marlovans instincts for the other kinds of abuse that are still perpetuated in the present day In addition, I don t understand how the Sierlaef s behavior could be coded as anything other than sexually predatory he murders Joret s fiance so that he can marry her instead What else could you possibly call that Maybe there s something I m not understanding here, or something that is clarified in later books If so, I d be super grateful for an explanation.It s also a story that is populated by a true diversity of people of color living in a world that is a really well realized alternative to standard pseudo English medieval fantasy fare Another really interesting aspect of Inda s world building is the diversity of sexualities that are present in its cast of characters Sponge is gay, as is his father the king, and I think it s pretty apparent that Joret and Ndara are both asexual The challenges that they face because of this are really well presented While Sponge would not necessarily be outcast or denounced because he is gay, he still struggles with the thought of people knowing about it because of the possibility of the other boys using his sexuality as a way of vying for power and favor My heart went out to Joret because of the agony she faces due to the attention she receives for her beauty when the entire thing is a source of revulsion and dread for her.I think you could make the argument that Inda s world is still a patriarchal one, where men seem to be the main rulers and the ones who go out to war in a society where these seem to be the most important signifiers of power We see several women contend with the difficulties that accompany being married off into unhappy marriages that they had no say in, and they struggle with the way that their society hurts and endangers the children they love.What s interesting, though, is that the division of power between men and women is a very unique one while men are responsible for outer defenses and seem to be responsible for most of the offensive war campaigns, women are still trained as warriors and are responsible for castles inner defense In addition, it was absolutely fascinating to see the ways that women developed their own secret forms of communication and agency by or less sneaking through the shadows and engaging in subtle manipulationsIf they had to make men stand down from violence, they needed to know skills that the men did not know About the Author from her websiteI was born in 1951 and have retired after twenty years of teaching, and now write full time I have been married for nearly forty years We have two kids, three dogs, all rescues and a house full of books I started making little books out of paper towels when I was six or seven, and began writing novels about another world when I was eight I tried sending out my novels when I was thirteen I typed them on a manual, and wow, did that take a long time, especially since I was and am a terrible typist I got encouraging rejections, so when I reached college, I figured I needed to learn something about writing that I didn t yet grasp revision Learning how to revise is an on going process for me as I am a visual writer, but while I ve been working at that that I went to college, lived in Europe, came back to get my Masters in History, worked in Hollywood, got married, started a family and became a teacher.I discovered that studying history was a good thing for an author One begins to see how cultures are shaped, how people thought, acted, ate, and lived I m giving Inda five stars despite a few minor complaints, simply because the ending made me well up I ll definitely continue with this series There s a total of four books.Let s get the minor complaints out of the way first.Most characters have an official name and a nickname plus a honorific The honorific is different depending on which language the characters use, which means there s at least four different ways a character can be referred to It took me a long time to be able to keep everyone straight in my head, and I spent a lot of time flicking back and forth to verify I m indeed thinking of the right character.The other complaint is a bit peculiar Smith uses an omniscient narrator to tell the story and sometimes switches POV character in the middle of a paragraph There are chapters where the POV shifts through several characters on a single page Basically this is a novel for people who are fully awake and are paying attention.The world building is ambitious, detailed and intricate The prose takes a while to get used to, but once you get into the book it flows beautifully I really enjoyed Smith s narration throughout the book.The characters are diverse, well developed, and I especially enjoyed the depiction of different sexualities Plus realistic women The first book, Inda, is basically a coming of age story It has everything betrayal, a military academy, pirates and magic.There s a steep learning curve, but it s already worth it by the end of the first book.I recommend everyone who loves fantasy to give this a try. I m too tired to write a proper review at the moment, but this was a brilliant book with an amount of complexity I really appreciated A great main character and very well written prose make that an easy 5 star rating. Indevan Dal is the second son of the Prince and Princess of Choraed Elgaer, destined to become his elder brother Tanrid s Shield Arm his military champion Like all second sons, he is to be privately trained at home by Tanrid, the brother whose lands he will one day protect.When the King s Voice comes to summon Inda to the Military Academy, he might well feel foreboding, or even fear war is imminent yet youthful Inda feels only excitement But there are things that Tanrid hadn t prepared him for, and Inda will soon learn that the greatest threats to his safety will not come from foreign enemies, but from supposed allies within his own country DNF at 48% This was the first book I ve tried by Sherwood Smith and I have some mixed feelings about it To begin with, military fantasy isn t really a favorite genre of mine The writing style took a little getting used to and all the hard to pronounce names and honorifics were annoying.There were some things about the book that I liked The political intrigue was interesting, and I really liked reading the parts about the different women and how they fit into the world I also really liked Inda and some of the other boys at the academy, but I did get tired of all the bullying that was going on and that the adults did nothing to stop.This book started out slow for me and I didn t really get into it until well into the story It did start to pick up toward the end of part one, but I feel like this series is just not for me There are three books in the series after this one, and after looking into all of them I decided I m not feeling the series enough to invest that much of my reading time into it There are a couple of reasons for this One is that the world is not interesting enough to me, another is that I prefer books with monogamous relationships in them, and it appears this series incorporates a lot of casualness in that regard, so I will not be continuing on with this series I m not sure if I will try reading anything else by this author.Review also posted at Writings of a Reader I have to say up front that I found two things about this book off putting First and foremost, Smith uses a third person omniscient voice I think it s fair to say that this POV is rarely used today, and there s a good reason for that We get plenty of third person limited omniscient in which the point of view shifts between various characters but only changes perspective from one scene to another I found Smith s jumping around mid scene to be, at times, hard to follow.Likewise hard to follow, at least at first, were the names The problem is that each character typically is referred to in three different ways a common name, a nickname, and a title Particularly as the scope widened and characters were brought in, this could be confusing as I at times found myself desperately searching my brain to remember whether so and so was the same as such and such or someone else entirely A lot of epic fantasy has started offering a dramatis personae listing the main characters with a description that is brief enough to avoid giving away the plot yet descriptive enough to help the reader follow along easily.Now, those things said, Sherwood Smith does an excellent job of telling a story I could hardly put the book down while I was reading it that was several weeks ago, when I still had time on my hands somehow and I m desperately looking forward to having time to read the next volume in the series.First and foremost, it s the characters and relationships that carry the novel Smith does an excellent job of creating a variety of characters about whom we care and in whom we take an interest The characters interactions are often complex For that matter, so is the world of political intrigue and varied cultures, all of which have a distinct foreignness about them in their values, yet they are drawn so skillfully that we absolutely believe their reality and want to explore their complexity.For better or for worse, Smith is not afraid to kill off major characters I m torn on this on the one hand, as a reader, you hate to lose characters in whom you have invested on the other, one sometimes gets a feeling of unreality when huge battles are happening or dangerous political intrigues are underway and all the characters you like make it through unscathed The end result is both a narrative that feels real and a narrative in which something is really at stake In some particularly fantasy novels, one gets the sense that all the main characters are virtually immortal oh, they may have some setbacks and difficulties accomplishing their goals, but in the end everything will turn out all right and the good guys will live happily ever after Well, not in the world of Inda they don t We get the sense that the title character might, and a few others seem like they ll have to make it through to the end, but then again, Smith has set things up such that every character seems vulnerable, and thus the danger always seems real It s a good effect she s got going there.It occurs to me that I didn t say anything about the plot or subject matter The obvious comparison that came to mind was to say that it is Ender s Game in a fantasy milieu, but that s a gross oversimplification The title character, Inda, is a natural leader and strategic thinker who goes off to his country s military academy However, he s not the same sort of raw genius that Ender is, nor is the story confined to his experience in the academy, though that makes up a significant part of the action There is, inherent in Inda, a coming of age story, but it s also than that Inda goes from innocence to experience, and the narrative builds in a similar fashion, as the political and cultural complexity of Smith s world gradually unfolds In short, it was good I liked it, despite the flaws noted above. The first thing I have to say about this novel is that it is very much the first in a series Absolutely nothing was resolved in the end Nothing at all In fact, there wasn t much of a story either, which is quite a challenge for over 500 pages.Here s the rub I still want to read the next one in the series A cast of hundreds of points of view, a meandering plot that seemed to jump forward at a ridiculous pace, then slow down just as fast, as if the entire novel is one giant montage Worked for the movie Fight Club, but does not work here.Still, I don t want to, but I m actually considering spending my hard earned dollars on the next in this abyssmal series, which is probably a testament to the author s particular skills.How can I sum this up for you There are approximately five novels in here, all summarized wonderfully, but losing their power in the summary I don t want to spoil it for you, because I am definitely recommending this for hard core fantasy readers, who often read so much and so fast that this novel series would be perfect for them Let s just say that it feels like Sherwood Smith started a novel, got bored with it, and hit the fast forward button on her word processor to get to the next section.I guess that would be fine, if it weren t for the fact that the author never actually settles on a story to tell We just keep pinging all over the place, to the effect that we, as readers, are never truly invested in what s going on in the story, and simply keep reading to see what happens next Sherwood tries to build suspense, but I have a hard time caring because the characters have not had time to evolve in my mind, and therefore I really don t give a shit that they re in danger.I think I ve made my point, so let s move on to craft, something that makes or breaks a review for me.As far as I can tell, Sherwood Smith has never been trained to write At a sentence level, it s obvious that Smith is quite enad with language, and likes to throw in volumously poetic phrases to end chapters or sections using some sort of a literary bang But it s a gimmick the blatant attempt at manipulation is insulting to mean I often roll my eyes than say, How perfect That s what should be the author s principle concern not what sounds pleasant or is neat, but what fits the story And the story is so completely barebones that these literary indulgences seem completely out of place, like Paris fashions at a PTA meeting I stole that from a commercial.The world does not really hold together, with its unexplainedly accepting sexual s, its strange equality amonst the sexes I admit that it is a refreshing change from the unremittingly masculine fantasy of most spec fic, but it s just so polished and pretty that s it s almost passive aggressive The internal and external politics are less than intuitive, and constantly bashed over the reader s head I ll let you decide on that one.Let me reiterate the fact that NOTHING IS EVER AT STAKE The main character s goals are constantly thwarted, but only as plotpoints Inda never fails, never has to learn from his failures, is always perfect from his extreme youth through his teens He just always succeeds For God s sake, Horatio Hornblower suffered less success in his own storied carreer.What saves this novel from the dismal depths of a 1 is the simple fact that, despite hating the book and never being able to read it for even the short train ride from my work to my house, I still want to find out what happens next I must be a little masochistic Read this if you read quickly and voraciously, as it passes the time Bear in mind, it s definitely a book for teenagers. I love this book People who follow me on reddit probably know that And it s hard for me to write a review of it, because it s so dear to me, but I m going to say basically the same things I do over there when I recommend it to people My reviews for the rest of the series will probably be nuanced Inda is perfect for fans of Game of Thrones or the Kushiel books it has plenty of political intrigue, complex characters with a variety of sexual preferences, worldbuilding that is incredibly deep, a military academy, pirates, and It throws you directly into the action with no hand holding or explaining about the world or terms or lineages or anything of the sort, you know exactly what the character does whose head you re in at the time does It can be disorienting, but the learning curve mostly levels out by the end of Part 1 in this first book, and the payoff is so worth it Mostly, though, if you love epic fantasy and you haven t read this yet, you need to get yourself a copy and make the time It should be considered one of the greatest series in the genre. Book one of this series was unexpectedly a coming of age story It s very hard to do this genre well at this point for me having read so much within it I think the reason why I liked it so much was there wasn t the over the top, smothering, oppressive.angst which dominates these stories ubiquitously in today s literature The second thing which made the book for me was that it was character driven You got point and counterpoint instantly in the author s style At first this style was a bit odd The author with no than a new paragraph would flip from one character perspective to another giving a real time feel to the conflicts Usually there s at least a double spaced new paragraph as the line of demarcation The court and school politics read a little like Robin Hobb however for me this was much better I liked Inda so much than Fitz who has to be one of the least likeable protagonists in the genre Even the villains I liked much than Hobb s The politics and backstabbing very much reminded me of her writing though The world and the story were both good and easy to follow but the characters and the empathy drove this one for me I look forward to the rest of the story. Indevan Algara Vayir Was Born The Second Son Of A Powerful Prince, Destined To Stay At Home And Defend His Family S Castle But When War Threatens, Inda Is Sent To The Royal Academy Where He Learns The Art Of War And Finds That Danger And Intrigue Don T Only Come From Outside The Kingdom