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The Other Lands by David Anthony Durham

The Other Lands

by David Anthony Durham

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Acacia (2)

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277940,824 (3.75)15



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Showing 1-5 of 9 (next | show all)
It gets better the further you go, but the story takes a while. Durham picks up like the names and events might be as familiar as if the reader finished reading the first book the day before, and he gives no quarter to the fact that his readers might need a refresher on the story and characters. That said, the world he's developing is creative, credible, tragic, and enjoyable which of course, ever good plot needs. ( )
  publiusdb | Aug 22, 2013 |
This was my second reading. When I read a book the first time, I'm usually busy rushing through to find out what happens. The second time I read a book, I'm able to really appreciate the details of the narrative. One of the marks of a great book is if I still have plot anxiety in a second reading. For example, if I know something bad will happen to a beloved character and I hope with every page that the outcome will be different from what I know it to be, that is a great book. This is a great book. Durham's characters are all unique and well crafted. He does a great job of writing women. I also very much enjoy the multiple POV narrative that I first found in George RR Martin's books.

I only have one issue and one warning.

First, the warning: This is a transition book. It's the second in a trilogy and you really need to read the first - Acacia - before reading this book. Awesome stuff happens in this book, making it a narrative that holds its own. However, The Other Lands builds on Acacia. It does not stand alone. A lot of transition books can be boring - they're a lot of moving the characters from point A to point B so they're in their proper places for the finale. There is some of that in The Other Lands (which I will get to in a second) but as far as middle trilogy books go, this one was amazing.

Second, the issue: The passages that focus on Dariel and his time in the Other Lands felt bogged down - like a truck stuck in snow, spinning its wheels. Between Dariel's and Rialus' chapters, there was a lot of info dumping. The info was fascinating, and Durham is good at weaving the info into the narrative, but not much happens. Certain plot points leave not only readers, but characters within the book clueless (the fate of the Lothan Aklun). While I understand Durham's narrative trajectory with the Lothun Aklun and the Auldek, I was disappointed with not getting know an entire race of people. I think Dariel and Rialus will come into play in force in The Sacred Band - the last book in the trilogy.

That being said, I'm going to go read The Sacred Band now. That is, after my library shift is over. ( )
  gypsycab79 | Jun 25, 2013 |
This is the second book in the Acacia series, so it's hard to review it without spoilers of the first book, but I'll try my best.

I rated the first book four stars. Why? It was a very slow start. Durham spent a lot of time laying the ground work for the series. It was still interesting, but I can see how it would be hard to get through for a lot of people. It was definitely worth it to push through, as by the end the plot was moving along quite nicely and I was throughly enchanted by the characters. I still only rated it four stars, because I couldn't really predict if the payoff of the entire series would be worth the slowness of the first book.

This one is five stars for sure. It picked up, pace-wise, right where the first book left off and didn't slow for a minute. There was even a quick little summary of the first book before the story even began - I really like it when authors do that, it helps to avoid having to recap everything within the story line and thereby bog down the pace. Some have said, and it is true, that this one ends in a cliff hanger. I can see why that might make some people avoid this, at least until the third book is out. For me though, that's not really an issue. Sure, I'd prefer to have the third book in hand to continue on right now.. But it's not going to kill me to wait a while.

Durham has a very smooth and engaging writing style that I really enjoy, and his character development is very well done. I found myself becoming attached to even minor characters, who were rarely in the story line. The characters seemed very real and well rounded to me.

To wrap it up, I would definitely recommend this book. But if you are the type that can't deal with a cliffhanger? Maybe wait until the third book comes out before digging into this one. ( )
  breakofdawn | Jun 11, 2013 |
I first cracked the cover of The Other Lands with a great sense of anticipation, and from the first page to the last, David Anthony Durham did not disappoint.

The Other Lands continues the story of the three royal children of the Akaran family. They are Corinne, who is now queen, Dariel, who could have been king, but let the rule pass to Corinne, and Mena, the warrior princess. There are also several new characters, but it's difficult to introduce some of them without giving spoiling the plot.

Since Corinne resumed the Akaran rule of The Known Lands, the quota trade has continued, but the people have not resumed their dependence on mist, the drug that has kept the populace quiet and happy for hundreds of years. Since the people are sober, they are also restless. They object to sending their children off into an unknown slavery; and they object to crushing Akaran taxes. Corinne has resumed trade relations with the League, and in recompence for Dariel's burning of the League Platforms in the first novel, she has offered them certain lands that might have a warm place in the reader's heart. And they have most diabolical plans for those lands.

Right from the start, the League is up to something. They come to Corinne with a story of a captured spy, a situation that has been the ruination of their trade relationship with the people of the Other Lands. She asks Dariel to go with them to the Other Lands as her emissary. He reluctantly agrees, for they know he is the one who set fire to their platforms in Book 1. Both suspect treachery. Both are right.

Surprises await in the Other Lands, and they are not what you would expect.

Read the rest of my review at http://fantasydebut.blogspot.com/2009/10/debut-graduate-other-lands.html. ( )
  TiaNevitt | Apr 6, 2013 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
David Anthony Durhamprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Rostant, LarryCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0385523327, Hardcover)

Book Description
The thrilling new installment in the ambitious Acacia trilogy, praised by the Washington Post as "gripping and sophisticated."

A few years have passed since the conquering of the Mein, and Queen Corinn is firmly in control of the Known World--perhaps too firmly. With plans to expand her empire, she sends her brother, Daniel, on an exploratory mission to the Other Lands. There Daniel discovers a lush, exotic mainland ruled by an alliance of tribes that poses a grave danger to the stability of the Known World. Is Queen Corinn strong enough to face this new challenge? Readers of this bold, imaginative sequel will not be disappointed in the answer.

(see all 3 descriptions)

A few years have passed since the conquering of the Mein, and Queen Corinn is firmly in control of the Known World-perhaps too firmly. With plans to expand her empire, she sends her brother, Daniel, on an exploratory mission to the Other Lands. There Daniel discovers a lush, exotic mainland ruled by an alliance of tribes that poses a grave danger to the stability of the Known World. Is Queen Corinn strong enough to face this new challenge?… (more)

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