Cover Image: The Binding Tempest

The Binding Tempest

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Member Reviews

This book has SO much potential, but unfortunately, it didn't live up to that. It read like a first draft before the author had gone back to edit or revise, and that made it VERY difficult to read.

A major strength was the worldbuilding--unique, intriguing, with just enough details given to make me want to see how the history hinted at the beginning tied into the rest of the characters' storylines. However, there were so many POV characters, introduced one right after another, that honestly, I couldn't keep them all straight. They all sounded the same, which didn't help, and the dialogue.....Oh, the dialogue. It was painful to read at times, so much so that I couldn't make myself finish the book. Around chapter 17, I gave up. Between the repetitive nature of the characters' conversations and the dragging descriptions of every...single...thing, I couldn't stay engaged.

Which was disappointing, because the actual story felt really interesting--I just got bogged down in how tedious the dialgoue and excessive description were, and it took me right out of the story world so often that it wasn't worth it to me to continue reading.

Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for providing me with an electronic copy of this book in exchange for an honest review!
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2.5*

The Binding Tempest is not a bad book. It is the beginning of an epic steampunk fantasy series, and it delivers on politics, machinery, and other pleasantries.

However, this is not enough for a great first book. Yes, it is enjoyable, and I like the characters and some of the scenes, but the plot sounds a bit recycled from all of the fantasy plot points we have read through the years. It is the author’s debut novel, which says something, but I do believe it is way bigger than needed be. It was enjoyable, but also a bit tiresome at times, and I felt like it was lacking in making you feel a part of the adventure.

That said, if you do like steampunk and a nice adventure, it is a good starting point to epic fantasy, in my opinion. Its easy and I loved how in every chapter we had a map to point us to the right place.
Just maybe not completely my cup of tea.
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The Binding Tempest” follows several main characters – Ellaria, Elias and Kovan the figures from the old war who depending on who you ask are either hero or enemy to the new regime coming into power. Then you have the new blood – Learon, Wade and Tali, the young impressionable youth that have been caught up with the war heroes and their quest to stop the new regime threatening to unleash an old and deadly evil on the land and all those living there.
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Firstly, I wanted to say that worldbuilding here is spectacular. The author has done a great job of tying in so many different aspects: steampunk, alchemy, fantasy and science-fiction - so bravo to the imagination on that.  The descriptions of the world were done really well, however sometimes I think we got so lost in descriptions and worldbuilding that it sometimes detracted from the characters and the plot. When it came to the characters, I feel we were told more than shown much about them, and as much as they were enjoyable, they didn't feel particularly fleshed out and relatable. also, with multiple POVs, it was hard at points to keep track of learning about the characters.  Overall, I think this was a good debut, though I wish we had gotten more time in the minds of the characters because I feel it was to their detriment that we were more focused on what was happening in the world around them.
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3.5 Wow, this was an epic fantasy. Blends steampunk and high fantasy together with representation of older MC's

It is carefully planned and written exceptionally in narration. What I really liked is that the main character, Ellaria, is aged in her forties, which we don't see in a lot of fantasy genres, and is still a badass. There is not a lot of representation in women of middle age in fantasy, which I found to be delivered well and made for a compelling main character.

It is very detailed-orientated, which I found to be too much sometime. Everything is described is in minute detail.. At the start it is quite confusing and often overwhelming meeting all the characters and the info-dumping of the world and its history. There were too many elements happening at once

A good start to this grand new saga.

Thankyou to Netgalley and MysticHawk Press LLC for this eARC in exchange for an honest review
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The first thing that catches your eye is the beautifully coloured detailed maps at the beginning of the book. It is not often you come across something as unique as this. At the beginning of each new chapter, there is a portion of the map that is highlighted. Other maps were scattered throughout the book which, I found extremely useful, as it saved me from flicking back to the main map. There is also an excellent glossary at the back of the book, plus a detailed coloured picture of one of the weapons used in the novel.
If you like your reading to be on the heavy side, then this is for you. The book is somewhat complicated and complex to start off with.  It did make the book very slow going, to begin with, but it was well worth persevering with. Pulling the main characters together took time, but their own individual stories were interesting, to say the least. 
The world-building was brilliant and vital in setting the stage for plot development. The author also gives vivid and vibrant descriptions of the landscapes to accompany his terrific maps.
It does make a pleasant change to have some aged heroes taking centre stage in a novel. The main protagonists here having a variety of different personalities make for interesting leading characters. The supporting cast of characters is excellent. The uniting of disparate individuals, both young and old, reminded me a little of Expendables III.
Some of the writing seemed a bit off-kilter at times (maybe needed a bit of editing), and the novel employs multiple narrators, which take some following. But the writing was intelligent and inventive, and the story well-crafted. The mix of Science-Fiction, Fantasy and Steampunk worked really well. The author has blended aspects of each genre and done so without favouring one over the other. 
There is plenty of excitement and tension wrapped up in this narrative. With the whole Steampunk, Magic, Fantasy ideas, The Binding Tempest is a unique read. I am really interested to see where the author goes next with this enthralling saga.
Thank you NetGalley and MysticHawk Press LLC, for the ADC of the book.
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The Binding Tempest by Steven Rudy

This is a solid debut by Steven Rudy who created a beautiful blend of steampunk and fantasy showcasing an age-diverse cast.

Elaria - The badass war veteran and the protector of all knowledge who fought to overthrow the last sagean emperor
Qudin - The enigmatic war hero who also happens to be a powerful luminary
Kovan - Another of the war vetaran struggling to come in terms with his past
Tali - A kind soul with a knack for danger
Learon - A grieving son trying to find his father's killer
Wade - A brother trying to find his missing sister who also happens to complain alot

Steven rudy starts with all the characters scattered around his world and knits them together slowly. This allowed me to view all of his world bit by bit. The world building was rich and sophisticated with many steampunk elements like cloundpartner, winddrifter, pulsators and many other creative details. Sometimes it did get too architecturally detailed that it felt a bit distracting. I hope in the next book we get to see how the nations differ from each other in terms of their citizens and not just there infrastructure.

I loved the magic system!! Was it unique? No, Did i enjoy it? Yes definitely!! Here some humans being called The Luminary are able to sense and control the energy of every matter, . There are also Magic crystals of all kind that can provide healing, power, protection and so on.

As for the Characters, my favorite was Elaria. Actually i loved all the three war vetarans and Tali. Learon and Wade seemed like background noise. I felt this book was more plot driven and so the characters felt a tad bit surfacy. Hoping to see more of character build up and bonding in the next book. 

And lastly, it got both world and city maps. What i loved most was that the city maps were right at the start of the chapter. Just where it was needed.

This being my first step into steampunk genre, i enjoyed it overall. Indeed a thoughtful and a creative debut. The plot gives a feel of treasure hunting (well here they are more like Ancient relic hunting) So if you have a knack for similar quest or even a knack for architecture then you will really enjoy this.
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This book was interesting with a lot of worldbuilding and unique characters. At times it was slightly confusing but i'm looking forward to reading more from this author.
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Around May, in one of my lit classes, I began studying steampunk novels (or novels with certain steampunk nuances/elements). The truth is that I had never read anything like that before, but I was certainly interested in trying. Fast forward a few months later... I found this book, and I was immediately intrigued by it. 

To be honest, it took me some time to getting into the story. The beginning of the book (the first few chapters, or so) got me a bit confused and lost, as there was a lot of information being presented. Maybe because I had never read a book like this one before, I was just not ready for it. However, as the story developed, I got more and more into the story, and was not able to put down the book until the end. 

I loved the world-building. This was such a well-developed world (you just can tell that the author put a lot of thought into it), and exactly what I was expecting. It had the fantasy/magic elements to it, which blended amazingly with the steampunk technology and aesthetic elements. Also, I found the maps and glossary to be fantastic additions to the book.

I’m so looking forward to read future installments of “The Luminance Saga”!

Thank you to @NetGalley and @StevenRudyAuthor for providing me with an eARC in exchange for an honest review!
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Thank you to Netgalley for the opportunity to read this book!

Firstly, I wanted to say that worldbuilding here is spectacular. Rudy has done a great job of tying in steampunk, alchemy, fantasy and science-fiction. The descriptions of the world were done really well, however sometimes I think we got so lost in descriptions and worldbuilding that it sometimes detracted from the characters and the plot.

When it came to the characters, I feel we were told more than shown much about them, and as much as they were enjoyable, they didn't feel particularly distinctive in terms of their separate voices. Of course, there were also a few POVs so it was a fair number of characters to keep track of in any case.

Overall, I think this was a solid debut, though I wish we had gotten more time in the minds of the characters because I feel it was to their detriment that we were more focused on what was happening in the world around them.
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I went into this book without many expectations and I was pleasantly surprised with it! It´s not your usual type of book, it was a very complex read to say the least. I loved following each characters´ stories before and after they eventually came together, and how they dealt with the things that happened in the book as a team. My favorite character was Ellaria, I found her fascinating and a true inspiration for myself. My favorite thing in general was definitely the world-building! It was so well-developed and I loved the map segments throughout the book, making the book feel even more visual. One thing that I didn´t like as much was the pacing. I found it very slow in the beginning and in certain parts of the book, specifically more in the middle of it. This was a very strong book as a whole and I think it has the potential for greatness! Can´t wait to read the future installments!
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This was a really interesting book with a really interesting premise. Pitched as Wheel of Time meets Indiana Jones with a layer of steampunk, I believed that it would be the perfect book for me. 
I was not wrong. 
I really loved the fantasy built world with the incredibly unique magic system in addition to the steampunk technology aspects which made it a perfect blend of technology and magic. The reader can clearly tell how much thought was put into the world-building because it was fantastic 
The pacing was a bit fast with all the dumping of information but was relatively alright for something pitched as fantasy and steampunk. Considering it's the first in a series, I let the pacing slide a little.
I really enjoyed seeing the differences as to how the older generation of heroes and the younger generation of heroes felt and how they were treated.
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The book focuses on a steam punk element of worldbuilding giving it an original flare and while the first few chapters had me a bit lost the characters and development that happens along the way draw you into a historical and political fantasy with each of the characters growing and developing through their problems and eventually coming together to face an ancient evil with a united front.
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I am starting to feel extremely lucky with my pull of ARC's from various sites. But this was my favorite one so far this year. The Binding Tempest was one of my favorite reads of the year at this point. It was definitely a heavy fantasy built world with a unique magic system but it was my first read this year with other technological aspects giving it a bit of a steampunk feel too.

I felt the character development and world building were both paced really well. It was interesting to be thrown into the story and then watch the story develop and kind of come back together as our main characters are introduced.

I had previously read some other reviews where readers were disappointed in the usual tropes. Personally if those are the tropes someone enjoys reading and that was what the writer was going for, don't fix what isn't broken! I personally loved the tropes in this one.

By the end of the book I just had to keep turning the page to see what was going to happen. The way the story unfolds letting us know the history and the older generation of heroes and their struggles then also brings us up to speed with our younger generation of would be heroes was nice. I was always looking for the next connection that was going to be made between the members of our group.

I can't wait to see what Steven Rudy brings us next in this series!
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I was very excited to read this book but was disappointed and had to dnf due to the beginning being too slow and not being able to connect with any of the characters. this book unfortunately did not impress me.
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The book was okay.

The worldbuilding is a strong focus of the book and it is quite nice : the world we evolve in feels ancient, with layers of history and political complexity. And - it's what drew me to the book - characters were really well written : they felt sympathetic, yet flawed in their own ways, they acted coherently with what we knew of them, and I particularly liked the character of Ellaria, an aging lady who lead a war forty years ago and is still super badass, while still feeling her age. Such a character is rare in fantasy books, where you encounter young naive boys and girls, or wise mentors with big beards, but rarely women who lead a full life.

However, the story in itself felt a bit meandering, and almost felt like a RPG adventure, where the game master threw the characters on a big quest and gave them new leads to follow during sub-quests. Therefore, the general rythm of the book was a bit off for me: pattern of the intrigue felt repetitive with sub-quests with a particular pairing of characters / reunion / new pairings and a new subquest too follow, and so on... It tired me a bit after a time. Thankfully, I liked the characters well enough to continue.

To be noted also: as a non-native English reader, I got quite confused by editorial mistakes. Phrases felt off, with weird words choices, commas not placed at the right time... I kept wondering if it was me who had a lack in vocabulary or if it was the book (but most of the time, it was the book ^^). It's a pity, because the overall quality of the story remains close to what you would have with big publishing houses (I've read way worse books for big houses), but spelling mistakes should definitely be corrected.

Thank you to Netgalley for providing me with a copy of the book to review. In the end, I quite enjoyed the ride, in spite of the flaws that I mentioned.
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This book was right up my alley, but i had to stop reading & read again parts that as soon as it started did not understand. I've been trying to finish this book for a while but i just can not connect with the story. Honestly, between the length & the unnecesary bits, i think the author just tried to do something that they weren't comfortable with. Too many points of views, there were things that i either wasn't understanding or were badly written. With all of this said, i couldn't finish, even though i tried to for a month or so. The length wouldn't have been that big of an issue but the path the story was taking clearly wasn't what i was expecting & it felt more like an obligation than a joy to keep reading this book.
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This is the type of book that is hard for me to review as I could not get into it. The writing is fine, but it is too descriptive for me. This is for people who love world-building I would say. I kept putting the book down myself and didn't feel very motivated to pick it back up. The beginning is too slow, and it takes its time introducing the characters... and by the time the story started I wasn't invested at all. I didn't manage to finish it.
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I looked forward to reading this book with its promise of magic, steampunk-esque flavor, fantasy and action suspense setting.  I struggled almost immediately to stay in the story. Willing suspension of disbelief is so necessary especially in this genre.  However at least once a chapter or more, there is a grammatical error, typo, or error in sequence that kept yanking me out of the action, interfered with the flow of the story and made it hard to maintain an interest in the characters/story.  Though I understand that pre-publications may contain errors, I think it unrealistic to expect readers to overlook so many
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DNF @12 %
I was interested in the story and I do think it would have been interesting to finish, but unfortunately there were a few choppy sentences that snagged my eyes and pulled me out of the story. Too many POV's were introduced back to back, and a clear path for where the story was heading was lacking.
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