The Great Winter reaches its third year and creatures of nightmare thought to be long extinct roam the land once more. The Oathbreaker stirs from his icy prison, calling upon his servants both past and present. The wolf howls, the dragon roars and the serpent thrashes as the world unravels. Heroes will rise, for this will be the age to end all ages.
The spirited girl escapes the shackles of tradition, searching for adventure, finding much more.
The craven boy goes after her in the name of love.
The man with no hand seeks an old friend, and the dragon searches for that which will restore her race.
The hero-turned-blacksmith leaves his family to save the world. His friend the King wishes him dead.
The blacksmith’s son goes after his father, questioning what it means to be a hero.
Their paths intertwine. They guide the Winds of Fate, weaving the song of our salvation. The Twilight of the World approaches.
The Heroes of Faengard will ride again. Let the sun rise, and the world be reborn through the ashes of war.
The first of the chain of events prophesied to end the world has begun. The Great Winter reaches its third year and creatures of nightmare thought to be long extinct roam the land once more. The Tree that protects Faengard crumbles, and only those with the blood of kings can restore it.
As a boy on the cusp of adulthood, Ein Thoren's concerns were largely limited to which of the village girls he would marry—but when a mysterious man calls upon his father to save the world, Ein finds himself leaving behind his quiet village life to bring his father back. Along with his childhood friends and a bumbling storyteller, they face a path filled with monsters and myth, swords and sorcerers, dragons and princesses, and a demon wolf that seeks to swallow the sun, all while the world unravels around them in what will be the age to end all ages.
The Heroes of Faengard will ride again. Let the sun rise, and the world be reborn through the ashes of war.
Release Schedule: I aim to release a minimum of one chapter a week, though sometimes I might release more.
DISCLAIMER: I do not own the cover image in any way. Full credit goes to the original artist.
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Preface: Before I get too far into it, my true score for the book is probably around a 4.2 or so, but that's playing on a real field, with the books that obviously inspired this. It's a 5/5 on here because it's far and away better than anything I've read on here.
Style: The prose and wording of The Winds of Fate are the best on the site, bar none. Reading it primarily evokes thoughts of Rothfuss, but I can feel a bit of Sanderson and Jordan in there as well. The opening paragraph in particular is a definite nod to The Name of the Wind. I wouldn't say it quite reaches the level of Rothfuss, but theyank has a command of words like few others in the web fiction scene.
Grammar: I won't dwell much on this. I've found a few mistakes that any editor would find. It's a first draft and this should be expected. It shouldn't be any other way.
Characters: Overall, decent. I'm a bit disappointed by the amount of critical world important characters that happen to have converged on this edge of the world. It seems like every other character introduced so far is some secret legend or another. The Winds of Fate (just like The Force in Star Wars) make it convenient to explain, but ultimately unsatisfying. And as mentioned before, the naming is pretty awful. It's my opinion that every word that isn't in the dictionary in this story should probably get replaced with something else. With the amount of worldbuilding you've already put in, a basic conlang to tie all the names together wouldn't be out of the question.
Story: Don't get me wrong. There's little 'wrong' with the story. I haven't found any plotholes, plotlines, or asspulls that hurt the story. It is everything its trying to be. The problem is that theyank is capable of so much more. The Winds of Fate comes off as the standard heroes tale, combined with Name of the Wind, with a bit of other influence on top. As of this review (Chapter 40), it hasn't really started to show the nuance of a modern acclaimed epic fantasy. It's just Good vs. Evil, on the Heroes Journey, with the help of The Force/Wind. There isn't nuance to the villains. Bandits are introduced, but as of yet have created only minor conflict. There's a ton of potential already in wait, with the rich worldbuilding and current character situations. It just has yet to show itself in the story, in what I believe is too deep into the story. A minor suggestion, would be to improve explanations/nuance of the Faceless, give them a bit more of an internal conflict. They could be much more interesting villains than the wordless relicts introduced.
Overall: Still, the best story on the website. Great potential and prose. I look forward to reading more.
And now I've just realized I said the same as Setana.
TLDR: high quality writing and a familiar story that will satisfy any reader who doesn't require a lot of gimmick to keep their attention.
The Winds of Fate is better than just about anything else you'll read on this site. There's no qualifier there, nor does there need to be. The author's writing is crisp, clean, thorough, and meticulous, with neither hideous grammar to disjoint your reading nor the hallmark too-much-too-fast sloppiness you've come to expect from RRL postings.
That is not to say that it's perfect. We'll get to that.
Stylistically, this falls into the same vein as The Iron Teeth, with rich description and fantasy mainstays leading the reader down a well-indicated path. If you enjoy a traditional novel/novella experience, this is the kind of story you likely gravitate toward, and The Winds of Fate will not disappoint in that area. The chapter length is probably the only thing that seems appropriate for Royal Road, as it's clear this is not a bumbling amateur shotgunning patreon content into a browser window as fast as he can between shifts at Burger King, which describes a lot of the higher-rated stories.
The characters are...traditional, I think, is both a kind and accurate way to describe them. If you read the whole of the story as posted, you will see shrapnel from every book, video game, anime, and film the author has ever seen, some of which leave ragged holes in the fabric of the narrative, some which merely decorate.
To clarify, you have your hidden village of peace, Norse godling chained to the top of an inhospitable mountain, village children on the cusp of adulthood, a town drunk/storyteller who's more than he seems to be, a blacksmith with a dark past, hobo-Gandalf who comes and goes as he pleases (he is a wizard, you know), the Edema Ruh with no apology to Patrick Rothfuss, and the farm boy who is the equal of all enemies.
Trollocks and Myrdraa-I mean, uh, not carbon copies lifted directly from Wheel of Time- end up attacking during a festival, spurring what will certainly be adventure!
So the characters and early story aren't exactly bleeding-edge fiction, though there are a couple bright lights in an otherwise samey pudding of tropes and cliches. The female lead has the most fleshed-out and unique personality, managing somehow to be strong, human, aggressive, smart, and courageous without being absurd. I hope to see more of her, and I hope that her charm and daring rub off on some of the other characters so the author can differentiate them more from the archetypes used to hold their meat.
Biggest complaint? The names. Jesus Tapdancing Christ, the names. Like, every name, be it a place, a person, a tree, a rock, or whatever is either outright stolen from Norse mythology, Diablo III, anime, Game of Thrones, Name of the Wind, etc, or it's one of those with a vowel replaced. This story deserves better, bespoke names for its quality. Names are memorable, and if you're using names like "Thoren" and "Bran" and "Asmodon", they will be memorable indeed...to people who read Tolkien, binged GoT, or played Diablo. Your story will not be attached to those references in the reader's brain because they are established in other contexts.
But that's really my only true complaint. The names are half-assed, but the story is on a good, if safe, track, and the quality of the writing is quite exceptional. If you've read The Iron Teeth and enjoyed it, read this. If you've read The Wandering Inn, Savage Divinity, or Everybody Loves Large Chests and want similar quality but in a familiar context, give it a try.
If you're a huge fan of The Legend of Randidly Ghosthound, this is probably not the story for you.
Keep going, author. You're doing good work.
This story is easily one of the best ones I’ve read this year and deserves more attention. Before I get into why I like this story and what it is, let me tell you what it’s not.
- It’s not a LitRPG story. There is no character menu, no status screen, no VR game elements and no ‘level-ups'.
- It’s not a reincarnation/summon to a new world with magic type of story. You won’t find that super intelligent but always mis-understood and oft-times bullied protagonist with a super-tragic back-story here.
- It’s not a fast paced simplistic kind of read. The chapters are actual chapters with the majority made-up of full paragraphs containing more than 3 complete sentences.
What it is:
- This is a story that shows you real people. You’re going to find naive teens with big hopes and dreams, frustrated cowards trying to be more, people that are blind to the truth because of love, and of course epic successes borne from struggle, grit, and circumstance.
- It’s the kind of story that makes you appreciate the beauty of sitting in silence with a friend. It makes you feel the frustration of unrequited love and the bridled rage of unchecked injustice.
- It’s a story that takes its time to grow its characters. It provides readers the time and opportunity to become emotionally invested into the many characters so that the reader may better empathize with a character's successes and failures.
Now please don’t misunderstand. There’s nothing wrong with a story that keeps it simple. I quite enjoy fast stories that don’t get complicated; they’re kind of like a quickie…and who doesn’t like the occasional quickie? However sometimes we need more than the wham-bam-thank-you-ma’am type of stories. Sometimes, we want to slow down, take our time, go on an adventure and discover something new.
What a epic story this was, it reminded me so much of some of the Fantasy books i used to read, and clearly was inspired by those.
This story features many characters, like usual epic Fantasy novels. Generally all of them are well written, and develop a lot throughout the course of the story. I plainly cannot find a personal favorite character, since i sort of like most of them! I will be fair, that once again, this story is based on Epic Fantasy novels, and the characters are sort of the standard for this genre.
This story is set in the world of Faengard, one thing that would be clear instantly upon starting this story, is that the story takes a lot of elements from other stories, especially the story of the Nordish Ragnarok, a apt description for this story would be Ragnarok Rewritten. Due to the story being influenced a lot by other stories, quite some names may seem to be ripped from other stories, personally i do not find that a problem, and the author took measures to make sure that the too balant names were changed in something else.
Despite that, the author has crafted a original world, that would fit as a setting for many Fantasy stories.
Grammar, overall that is flawless, but there are some kinks i have noticed personally. At times, there are typo's, oddly worded sentences, or even names the author has forgotten to change in something else. However this will not pose a problem for reading this story.
The author just has a way with words, that makes this story a fantastic read, and make it worthy of being called a true Epic Fantasy story. Seriously excellent prose, the story grabbed me in instantly with its writing, and i just wanted to read further even when i wasnt reading. Good pacing, the speed sort of switches when required for the story. The story features some seriously well written scenes, that make a reader go 'wow'.
One of my few complaints is, that sadly the author currently is not planning to write another story to follow up on this one, i however can also understand it, as epic Fantasy is quite hard to write overall.
Seriously, wait no more, start reading this epic story, its even completed to boot.
I don't typically write reviews, especially without going into more thorough detail, but I'm short on time.
The Winds of Fate is a surprisingly well-crafted story with intrigue and excitement. As the reviewer beneath me put it, it's a 'rare gem'.
The first thing that drew my attention originally was the amount of detail to the world and characters. One quick example being the quotes the author makes at the start of each chapter to create backstory and interest for his world. It's such a simple trick but it works amazingly well to convince me your world is real and that it's not just some shallow pond.
I look forward to each new chapter release, and I'll be updating this review with a full advanced rundown eventually.
The Winds of Fate is unapologetic with its homage to the epics it takes inspiration from, and while this might lead to a host of tropes this really only helps build the story up. More importantly, while the story might not beat those before it, it can stand on its own without them and even alongside them.
Style: The style of writing behind The Winds of Fate is wonderful and fits the story perfectly. With such great attention to detail and mood, confusion is unlikely and the reader is fully immersed into the world TheYank has created.
Grammar: Not an issue, pretty good only really noticed one or two issues.
Story: The story itself is pretty standard actually and doesn't seem to care to divert from this (at the moment anyway), so intrigue isn't really heavy. Another issue that some might find is the slow pacing. However, both of the two previously mentioned problems can be overlooked by the organic progression and worldbuilding provided by the characters and the setting. This can be compounded by the fact that the world is interesting in of itself, with the rather obvious inspiration from Norse mythology working as a great boon for wanting to see more.
Characters: As with the story, I've seen these characters before and they don't attempt to deviate from their norm. I can overlook this however because the characters make sense in the story they inhabit and give off the impression that they all have room to grow. The only one I really take issue with is Ein, the main character, but that's mostly due to personal preference than anything else.
The Winds of Fate is not for everyone. Those new to or tired of Epic Fantasy probably won't like the slow pacing and the by the books nature of the story, but if you can work past these things you can see a greatly written, beautifully detailed, and happy to be Epic Fantasy.
The world is wonderfully crafted. All the details makes the reader feel like they are in an actual place and not just a fictional one. The exposition strikes just the right balance, there is enough context for it to be meaningful, and not so much that it bogs down the story. The descriptions and the imagery really stand out, one can feel the air/the cold as if they were there.
The story flows well, and I find myself racing through the chapter.
10/10 would recommend.
When I've started reading the story, I was quickly immersed in it. The descriptions, the flow, the style, it was just perfect.
Now, like most, the more I read, the more I found the pace to be too slow. Not because of the chapters or the lacking action, but because of the story shape.
The reason for that, is I believe, the story is too balanced.
There's no definite "taste". It hover between character's backstory, dawning plot, world background, and random events.
All of this does help in setting the story, describing the world for the readers with each passing chapters. But, I can't help but feel that it is too balanced. It doesn't focus on anything, it tries to encompass everything with the same volume.
As for whether it is a flaw or a perk, feel free to judge it. As for me, I would expect a main style to be prominent. Either focus on the characters, their psychology. Or the world background, with descriptions and information as the story progress. Or a focus on the plot with a fast-paced story. Right now, I can't tell what your main focus is.
For the characters, I have nothing to say. Each is unique.
Overall, it's a good quality fiction.
Damn, i am amazed!
It's one of the best reads i had in a while and it has the potential to become the best here on RR!
I simply love how the charcters you introduced so far all have depht and a meaning and they all just don't devolve around the protagonist.
Keep up this amazing work
If you have any interest in epic fantasy whatsoever, do yourself a favor and read this story. If you don't...it's perhaps not the most accessible example of the genre, but it is excellently written, keenly polished, and I believe can be enjoyed by anyone who's willing to go beyond a light novel.
Reading just the first paragraph should give you a strong sense of the quality of theyank's prose. His descriptions are frequent and vivid, and do much to carry you to the fantastic world he's created. Compared to the often-nonexistent scenery and functional style of most of RRL, the world here is just enthralling to exist within because of the attention lavished upon it.
It should be fairly evident that I view theyank's style as one of the greatest strengths of the work. Epic fantasy stories often suffer from slow pacing and excessive worldbuilding, and while The Winds of Fate shares those traits, I found myself being carried through fairly effortlessly on the back of the enjoyable writing.
As you might expect, slow-paced, though less intolerable as you might believe given my point above and knowing that it is done deliberately. Again, I'd recommend without hesitation to any fans of the genre, and encourage all others to try it with this fact in mind.
The premise is interesting, the plot sounds typical on paper, but does a good job of adding twists and subverting tropes that it doesn't feel that way, and once it picks up, it picks up well.
Perfectly readable. Can't complain.
Every character has their own quirks and feels like they have lived a lifetime to reach the page. They all feel like they have a lot more going on behind them than is immediately apparent, and that's a fantastic feeling to be able to create as seemingly effortlessly as theyank does.
When it comes to delivering on that backstory, well...not every character is necessarily as deep or storied as they first appear, but nobody is ever uninteresting, and it's handled in such a way so as to be satisfying in general.
Despite my nit-picks, I've already said it twice here: The Winds of Fate is a fantastic read, and several, several steps above what you'd typically expect to find on RRL with only a hundred follows. It is exactly what it appears to be -- an incredibly solid, very enjoyable epic fantasy story, that does exactly what it aims to with confidence and vitality. If that sounds like something you might enjoy, please give this excellent work a read and a follow. It deserves to be found.