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American Poems: Books: The Sum of All Men (Runelords, Book 1) (The Runelords)
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The Sum of All Men (Runelords, Book 1) (The Runelords)

  • List Price: $44.95
  • Buy New: $28.32
  • as of 10/21/2014 05:05 EDT details
  • You Save: $16.63 (37%)
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New (2) from $28.32
  • Seller:blackstone_audiobooks
  • Sales Rank:4,700,828
  • Format:Audiobook, Unabridged
  • Languages:English (Unknown), English (Original Language), English (Published)
  • Media:MP3 CD
  • Number Of Items:2
  • Edition:Unabridged MP3CD
  • Shipping Weight (lbs):1.1
  • Dimensions (in):7.4 x 5.3 x 0.6
  • Publication Date:October 1, 2008
  • ISBN:1433226979
  • EAN:9781433226977
  • ASIN:1433226979
Availability:Usually ships in 1-2 business days

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Editorial Reviews:
Synopsis
[MP3CD audiobook format in vinyl case.]

[Read by Ray Porter]

David Farland's acclaimed 'Runelords' series introduces a world where the social structure is based upon the magical exchange of ''endowments'' such as stamina, grace, and wit. The Runelords are those who receive these endowments from their vassals, becoming superhuman in exchange for the responsibility of caring for those they have deprived of strength, or beauty, or sight.

Young Prince Gaborn 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, the prince and his bodyguard stop at a local tavern, where they spot a pair of assassins who have their sights set on Princess Iome's father. As they race to warn the king, they realize that more than the royal family is at risk: the very fate of the Earth is in jeopardy.
Amazon.com Review
The Runelords is that rare book that will remind you why you started reading fantasy in the first place. Much of the setting--and even some of the story--is conventional fantasy fare, but David Farland, aside from being a masterful storyteller, has built his world around a complex and thought-provoking social system involving the exchange of "endowments." Attributes such as stamina, grace, and wit are a currency: a vassal may help his lord by endowing him with all of his strength, for instance, and in turn the vassal comes under the lord's care as his "dedicate," too weak to even walk. A Runelord might have hundreds of such endowments, giving him superhuman senses and abilities, but he then must care for the hundreds that he has deprived of strength, or beauty, or sight.

Runelords excels because this novel idea is not mere window dressing--Farland uses it to explore fundamental questions of life and morality. The story's hero, the young Runelord Gaborn, struggles to define his role in this "shameful economy" while keeping his commitments to himself, to his people, to the woman he loves, and to the earth itself. We end up asking ourselves the same questions: Should you choose your friends based on insight or virtue? Is it better to be just or good? Competent fantasy lets you escape to adventure in faraway lands, but exceptional fantasy makes sure you have something to think about when you get back. Runelords accomplishes the latter. --Paul Hughes


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