|Academ's Fury (Codex Alera, Book 2)
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In Furies of Calderon, bestselling author Jim Butcher introduced readers to a world where the forces of nature take physical form. But now, it's human nature that threatens to throw the realm into chaos.
- A Bit Better than the 1st Book in the Series
"Academ's Fury" is the second in Butcher's "Codex Alera" series (Furies of Calderon (Codex Alera, Book 1), Academ's Fury (Codex Alera, Book 2), Cursor's Fury (Codex Alera, Book 3), Captain's Fury (Codex Alera, Book 4), and Princeps' Fury (Codex Alera, Book 5)). It picks up about two years after the first book. If you liked the first book, you'll almost certainly like this one: an interesting world, good writing, and, for the most part, fairly well done characters. I also felt that the pacing was a bit better in this one. Plus, Butcher added a bit (just a bit) more information into the furies, themselves. I only had three significant disagreements with the book:
- First, there doesn't seem to be any adult supervision at the Academy. A good chunk of the plot revolves around things happening that just shouldn't be able to at the premier learning institution in the world. I mean, nobody in their right mind would leave a group of (essentially) magic-wielding teenagers alone to practice their group-dynamics on each other like this.
- Second, as in the first book, the low-life human antagonists (not the elite ones) are just over done: they stick to their unpleasant behavior far past the point where it would make any sense. After a while, I'd just throw up my hands, roll my eyes and say "not again."
- And, third, it takes an awful lot of pounding to do any damage to anyone.
This is a fantasy book, though. Not high literature. So, I'm not putting too much emphasis on those things. Like the first book, this one is captivating and well worth the read. I rate it at a Very Good 4 stars out of 5....more info
- Book 2 of the 'Codex Alera'
Jim Butcher's Academ's Fury presents Book 2 of the 'Codex Alera': readers familiar with the prior fantasy introduction will find a quick continuation of the story of a young man, Tavi, who secretly trains to become one of the First Lord's spies of his kingdom. His inability to control the furies makes him vulnerable, but a mysterious attack may bring him fame and glory in this spirited fantasy adventure.
- I didn't want to like it
I love Jim Butcher's Dresden Files. I wouldn't touch his Codex Alera series, but found myself facing a long bedrest time. So I ordered all that he had written in the new series. Now I'm in love with both his series...Codex Alera is rich in characters, storyline and fast packed action. This series has been added to my list of unforgetable great entertaining books....more info
- A fantastic high fantasy series!
I started reading these because I am a fan of the Dresden Files (his other series)and because I love fantasy.I was not dissapointed! Butcher juggles a lot of characters, plot and cultures so well. The tension is constant throughout. I've now read all three, as have my roomates, all of us staying up until 5 am to finish them. I highly reccomend all three books. What really amazes me is Butcher's ability to humanize "evil" characters and giving the reader a lot of gray areas to deal with. So, read and enjoy!...more info
- From farm to City
Tavi's time at the city shoed that his principles were not going to change because of it. He just got stronger and made friends with the people who would change his life as he would change theirs.
Very well written and I couldn't leave the book till the end. Almost 24 hours. Very good indeed!!...more info
- Thoroughly enjoyable
I recently struck upon JB's Dresden Files books, moving from them to the Codex Alera series. The former prove the rule that there's no great bonus for originality -- as long as you do it better. Jim Butcher (and Harry Dresden) do it better with strong charachterizations, detailed (but not over-detailed) plotting and generally light-hearted fare.
With the Codex Alera series, JB has "stepped up his game" to develop a post-Roman flavored world where elemental spirits, mythical beings, and Machievellian politics mix. The last star I reserved simply because the characters are somewhat one dimensional and the overall plotting smacks slightly of the contrived. These complaints, however, take little away from the excitement of the story and the series overall is a strong recommend....more info
- Academ's Fury (Codex Alera)
Jim Butchers' writing is captivating any of his books is a must read. ...more info
- Academ's Fury
Love Jim Butcher's adventures. He keeps things moving and I just keep pages turning. Great addition to the Fury adventure. ...more info
- Second book better than the first
Great story if at times depression. Too much killing and death otherwise would've had a 5 star. Other than that, I really enjoyed his style and look forward to the next
If you like books like this one, might I suggest another I've recently come across. The Unsuspecting Mage by Brian S. Pratt. It's another fantasy adventure sure to please. I highly recommend it.
- Jim Butcher Hits Another Home Run
The second book in the Codex Alera series is exciting, riviting, and filled with unexpected plot twists, keeping the reader's attention until the final page; then leaving one wanting more. Butcher is a master story teller. I am looking forward to his next book...and the one after that!...more info
- Loved the book, but 'noir' doesn't half cover it.
I like Butcher's work. Love this series and the Dresden chronicles.
I realize that a hero is measured not merely by his (her) heroics, but more importantly by the villains and obstacles they overcome. The more powerful the antagonist, the more sweet the ultimate victory. Sacrifices and deaths along the way validate the item or person or ideal being protected.
But jeez, louise! Butcher's characters never seem to get a break.
Halfway through this novel, i almost put it down. It just got so depressing. The villains so numerous and bulletproof, the deaths racking up so high, so many innocents lost...
I still finished it. I cared enough about the characters to see how they ended up. I wanted to know if any of the mysteries hinted at in the first book were answered here (some, not all by any means). I enjoy the ideas of how 'magic' works in this particular world. And ultimately, i enjoyed reading the book and will read the next one.
So i guess i offer this review as a warning...it will get worse before it gets better. And it doesn't get all the way better, some things can not be recovered from. But it is compelling. Terribly well written, the characters are deep, their actions and reactions believeable, and while many writers have their 'good' characters skirt the edge of 'evil' in pursuit of greater goals, Butcher's one of the few where the 'evil' ones need to perform good acts in pursuit of THEIR greater goals. Rounds out some of the villains as actual human beings....more info
- Butcher does no wrong
He takes to pure fantasy like a fish to water and going a route that pleases me immensly. One thing I dislike in the current fantasy trend is the "realistic" fantasy that is coming out these days. Taking historical incidents and weaving a fantasy tale, with a different planet and characters yet have the same brutal feudal outcome does not appeal to me. I like my fantasy to have magic, and action, a bit of romance and a lot of fun.
Martin and many others coming along seem to revel in bombarding you with the phrase "no one is safe". That gets old after a while and you want to sit back and read about characters you enjoy.
Butcher does this. With Academs Fury Tavi grows to a young man with still the sameproblems, being the only human unable to control a Fury. This time around we see Tavi at the Academy, when the Emperor falls ill. Thanks to Tavis' quick thinking and wits he and the Emperors most trusted aids are able to keep the realm from falling apart, if only for a short time. Back home, Tavi's family is underseige by a new threat, one that he may have unleashed. This threat could destroy the whole Empire if it is not stopped.
Butcher keeps many of the secrets and the path of the story to himself. Tavi continues to display a fantastic intellect, with quick thinking and bravery that rivals another of my favorite underdogs in literature Miles Vorkosigan. Tavi does not let his handicap interfere with what needs to be done, yet you can feel the lack of inability to Furycraft during each incident and adventure. For in a world where the smallest of childerend and the most unintelligent of men can use this power effectively, you just know that if Tavi had this power he would be a force to reckon with.
I give it five stars because of the sheer originality of the symbiotic realationship between the Furies and humans as a system of magic.
It may not appeal to the hardcore fantasy fans, that love the gritty realism in fantasy these days. But to Butcher fans this is pure gold. I eagerly await the next round....more info
- The series gains depth as Tavi starts growing up
This book takes place 2 years after the events in the first book of the series. Tavi is now a trainee Cursor at the academy in the capital and still has no furies to call his own. However, when the First Lord collapses one evening while alone with Tavi it is up to him to decide the best way to prevent this sudden health problem from plunging Alera into civil war. At the same time those in the Calderon Valley discover that the Wax Forrest has spawned a new evil that makes the previous wars in the valley look like child's play and could destroy all of Alera.
This story is played out in the space of a few days as Tavi tries to balance final exams with impending invasion and the political games of the high lords. Tavi is growing up and this comes through clearly in this novel, and though it was somewhat disappointing to find him still fury-less, Tavi still manages to do more with his brains than many powerful people with furies ever achieve. It will be interesting to see what happens in the next volume of this series, though its clear that without furies Tavi's options are becoming more limited, still, this is a series I will continue to be happy to buy in hardback.
- Exciting adventure, solid world-building
Alera is threatened. It's aging First Lord has named no heir--and the major lords grow restless, waiting for a chance to strike, to seize the throne for themselves. Meanwhile, external enemies push the First Lord hard with continued storms that sap his strength and make him less able to respond to hidden threats. And there is a hidden threat. An alien race has taken root. With its ability to take over the bodies of its victims, the alien swarm-race intends to rot Alera from within--and then to take over the entire world. Against these forces stand only the aging First Lord, his page Tavi and Tavi's two best friends and fellow students, and Tavi's aunt and uncle. Tavi's uncle must confront one nest of the alien vord while Tavi's aunt races to the capital for rescue--only to find assassins, with the First Lord in no position to help.
Author Jim Butcher creates a fascinating alternate Earth--a land where the forces of nature are personified into beings (Furies) of power that certain humans can call upon, and a land where scholars cast scorn on any who believe that civilization was even possible before the discovery of the great furies. The power of the furies has stiltified scientific progress and war is still fought with legions, sword, and spear--along with magic.
Tavi, in particular, makes a vivid character. His school traumas, made worse by the absence of any Fury talent whatsoever, provides a backdrop on which the greater political struggle takes place. Butcher's military scenes ring true, with legions going up against alien bugs, and with Tavi's uncle, Bernard, wrestling with his failure to protect the very people he is sworn to serve. I found Butcher less convincing with his female characters--Isana (Tavi's aunt) being whiny and annoying and Amara (Bernard's lover) not much better. The mysterious Kitai is a welcomed exception, being an intriguing and capable female.
ACADEM'S FURY is compelling reading--and Butcher's smooth writing, strong world-building, and continual danger and adventure, add up to an addictive mix....more info
- Can't put the book down!
I picked up this book on a whim, and was thrilled to discover a great Fantasy writer. I was unable to put the book down. There is continual action but it all flows from the plot. The characters are well developed but not predictable. I am impatiently hoping for many more such books from this author!...more info
- Academ"s Fury (Codex Alera
Had me wishing I could read faster. Very well written, great plot and easy to emphasize with the characters. A little too much detail on the battle scenes....more info
- Excellent second book in the series!
What a great book! The characters are fully developed, but not impossibly perfect. The bad guys are not fools, and some have the best of intentions. And the story never slows down through the entire book. Really! The plot comes to good partial conclusion, with a tease for the next book. This is how storytelling should be!
Reminds me of the early days of Jordan and Eddings, before they bogged down. (Don't get me started on that...do we really need a cast of thousands, a hundred subplots, and ridiculous characters who spank everyone?...could we please bring a couple plots to conclusion?...oops, sorry!)
Anyway, great book. I actually think the second book in the series is better than the first - which was very good as well. The only bad part is waiting for the next book. Five stars all the way.
- Thought it was great
Usually a second book just can't seem to hold up to the standards of the first, but this one definately held its own. It had been some time since I read the first and normally I struggle to remember what occured previously so that I know why the characters do and say what they do. Butcher kept me up to date without being obvious about it. I fell right in the story like I read the first book just yesterday. Also, I had the hardest time putting it down. The action was nonstop.
In Academ's Fury, two years have past since the Second calederon War and Tavi is at school. Because of his lack of furies (magic) he is teased and mistreated badly by students and teachers alike. Regardless, he makes a few trusted friends (especially his roommate-Max). He also works closely with the High Lord as a messenger and is in training to be a spy. So, basically, even though he may not have furies, he most certainly can hold his own.
This story is much more serious than the last in that there is not only a threat to the High Lord from those wanting to over throw the government, but apparently Tavi and Ketai let loose a horrible creature when they set the wax forrest on fire and that creature has tracked Tavi all the way to the kingdom, but not before she creates two other queens and unleashes them in different parts of the countryside. These creatures can create warriors of immense strength, and worse.
Like I said, very fast pace and hard to put down. I'm looking forward for more and hope I won't have to wait too long....more info
- That's what I'm talkin' about!
The furies are elementals that work with humans, some as slaves and some as family friends so you can imagine the issues that could come up in that situation; and their abilities are really cool.The main character, Tavi, the misfit in the family, is nevertheless a supremely competent, go get 'em type of individual and things tend to happen around him. He ends up with a girlfriend who is from a people considered less than human and ancient enemies of the steadholders, but before that happens -- Drama, drama, drama, and lots of action. A more threatening and encompassing enemy threatens everything upon the planet and enemies and friends change meanings overnight. Tavi goes away to make more of himself and do his bit for land and family at the Academy and things really heat up: friends are changed, imposters discovered, and the fate of the realm is in the hands of a single young man.
The villains are just as complicated, very 3-D in their personalities.
From beginning to end I was hooked on this series that has so much action, character development, plot substance, and human interest. It's a keeper....more info
- A Hero Grows
In this second book of Jim Butcher's Codex Alera series, the reader can enjoy lots of well blocked out battles of various kinds and be swept up in the action of Jim Butcher's well-contrived fantasy world, inhabited by a diversity of magical creatures and people.
Jim Butcher is a fine fantasy writer who does a lot of things right with this series. He has an unusual fantasy world modeled not on Europe in the Middle Ages but on Imperial Rome, where powerful magicians control elemental spirits of water, air, wood, fire and earth. Not Tavi--our engaging young hero who lights the page whenever he's there. Tavi, so far unable to control a fury, must make do with his wits and courage--and thereby hangs the fascination of the tale.
Butcher gives us a solidly interwoven story in this delightful book, following Tavi in the Capital, struggling to keep up with his studies even as he runs errands, hunts for a thief and deflects plots against his patron, while his uncle faces an invasion of unearthly beings out in the countryside. In the meantime, Tavi's aunt makes a choice that will have consequences for the future.
The one thing that doesn't quite hang together for me is the status of women in this fantasy world. Butcher gives us such strong female characters and then states that there are laws that give women unequal status--this doesn't jive in a world where a woman could wield magic that is as powerful as a man's. And we know that that is possible because of the marvelous scene where Lady Aquitaine strolls into the palace and takes command of the Imperial Guard. I'm thinking that a law that mandated such a woman into having children would somehow fail to be enforced. However, I don't entirely mind the feeling that as a reader, Butcher is simply my guide in a world he is discovering as we go along. It's a fun journey and so far Butcher has kept the torch burning....more info
- Better than the first in the series...
...and that's saying something, for a trilogy. Most of the time, the second book is the weakest; the author has to raise the stakes, while resolving the present-time problems though not the larger ones. Butcher does an excellent job at this, while developing the characters of the people we met in the earlier novel. He also manages to throw in a few delightful surprises.
The end result is a story that I simply kept reading. In fact, I stayed up way too late to finish the book, because I just had to know what happened. And now, alas, I have to wait for book #3!...more info
- Another excellent book
Academ's Fury is a fine example of a series book... Picks up not long after the last book left off, and left off with all sorts of suspenseful things hanging! Well written, the book will keep you reading well into the night....more info