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by Sherwood Smith

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Inda (1), Sartorias-deles (1)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
7182622,109 (3.99)85
Acclaimed Inda series within Sherwood Smith's epic fantasy Sartorias-deles universe * Military fantasy woven with courtly politics, vast worldbuilding, and diverse characters 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.… (more)
  1. 00
    Assassin's Apprentice by Robin Hobb (humouress)
    humouress: Both series share the similarity of a country defending itself from invaders from the sea with whom they in fact share their ancestry.

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» See also 85 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 26 (next | show all)
"Action novel. Culture is laid on a bit thick (hard to keep up with names, places, etc.), but wonderful writing." ( )
  treehorse | Nov 7, 2019 |
Inda #1 ( )
  Ronald.Marcil | Jul 7, 2019 |
Fairly standard pseudo-medieval-European fantasy story shape, sub-genre coming of age, but with enough point-of-difference in the thoughtful examination of gender roles to feel fairly fresh. I could do without the "Vikings slipped into another world through a crack in time" origin story (especially since some of the stuff around the maintenance of the Waste Spell etc makes me head-canon that they're all NPCs in a super-complex virtual reality...) but that's mostly ignorable.

The way the omniscient darts from person to person was a bit off-putting at first but I quickly got used to it and (aside from supporting the epic feel) it was fantastic at rounding out characters who'd otherwise get little air-time. Even the villains are... almost sympathetic; in several cases it feels like you could actually solve many problems if only it were possible to sit them down with a therapist to work through some of their issues/relationships. ( )
  zeborah | Oct 23, 2018 |
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 more 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. ( )
  Vinjii | Mar 22, 2018 |
(First of 4: Inda series. Fantasy, epic fantasy)

Set on Smith's world of Sartoria-deles, this series follows a time period in the history of the country of Iasca Leror. The first book focuses on Inda, son of the Prince of Chorad Elgaer, from the age of ten upto about sixteen. He lives in a martial society, the Iascans having recently (though not in living memory) been conquered by the Marlovans. Though the two races are now integrated, the nobles are descended from the Marlovans, and Marlovan is only spoken as a battle language. Marlovans specialise in cavalry warfare and are constantly fending off attacks by pirates and the sea-faring Venn (similar to Vikings), with whom they share their ancestry.

Inda comes from a noble family and, as such, his life path is very structured, including being brought up with his future wife (from another noble family) who will help organise internal castle defences, should the need arise. As the second son of a noble, Inda expects to grow up to defend his brother's castle while his brother defends their lands. As such, his older brother goes to be trained at the Royal Academy to learn to defend the country with the other land heirs while Inda stays at home. Traditionally, of second sons, only the king's second son is trained at the Academy - but when he is due to start, the king makes a surprise announcement and orders a group formed of noble second sons of a similar age to join him at the Academy. So Inda makes friends with Sponge. He also gets to see more of his own sister, Hadand, who is betrothed to the king's heir (known by his title of the Sierlaef).

This book is well written. Though it focuses on Inda and his friends, the war games they learn at the Academy and the pranks they pull, it is told from many points of view and gives an all-round perspective of the kingdom. We get to see some of Hadand's life and her training in martial arts and politics in defense of the kingdom. We see the thinking of a person in a position of power who, while unquestionably loyal to king and country, has their own ambitions and ideas of the future direction of the country. Though other people realise this, they cannot overtly move to block them. This person holds a secret grudge against Inda's family and, along with their plans for the Sierlaef, makes life difficult for Inda and for Sponge, who is the Sierlaef's brother.

Engrossing, very well worth reading. Epic and well written. At one point I found myself chuckling at a funny incident, and I realised it was probably the description of the ten year boys' reaction rather than the incident itself that got me laughing. I have almost finished the second book and am thoroughly enjoying it.

5***** ( )
  humouress | Aug 6, 2017 |
Showing 1-5 of 26 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Sherwood Smithprimary authorall editionscalculated
Stawicki, MattCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

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Inda (1)

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