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Under the rigid guidance of the Conclave; an order of holy men seeking to bring back the glory of the time of the gods, the Order of the Inquisition and their Prekhauten Guard divisions the seven hundred known worlds carve out a new empire with the compassion and wisdom the gods once offered. But a terrible secret, known only to the most powerful, threatens to undo three m Under the rigid guidance of the Conclave; an order of holy men seeking to bring back the glory of the time of the gods, the Order of the Inquisition and their Prekhauten Guard divisions the seven hundred known worlds carve out a new empire with the compassion and wisdom the gods once offered. But a terrible secret, known only to the most powerful, threatens to undo three millennia of progress. The gods are not dead at all. They merely sleep. And they are being hunted. Senior Inquisitor Tolde Breed is sent to the planet Crimeat to investigate the escape of one of the most deadly beings in the universe. Amongeratix, one of the three sons of the god-king is loose once again, the fabled Three. Tolde arrives on a world where heresy breeds insurrection and war is only a matter of time. Tolde is aided by Sister Abigail of the Order of Blood Witches in his quest to find Amongeratix and return him to Conclave custody before he can begin his reign of terror. What he doesn’t know is that the Three are already operating on Crimeat. Each serves a different emotion: Vengeance, Sorrow and Redemption. Their touch drives the various characters beyond themselves and towards an uncertain future that can only end one of two ways. Either the Three win and finally destroy the gods, or humanity stops them and continues to survive.


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Under the rigid guidance of the Conclave; an order of holy men seeking to bring back the glory of the time of the gods, the Order of the Inquisition and their Prekhauten Guard divisions the seven hundred known worlds carve out a new empire with the compassion and wisdom the gods once offered. But a terrible secret, known only to the most powerful, threatens to undo three m Under the rigid guidance of the Conclave; an order of holy men seeking to bring back the glory of the time of the gods, the Order of the Inquisition and their Prekhauten Guard divisions the seven hundred known worlds carve out a new empire with the compassion and wisdom the gods once offered. But a terrible secret, known only to the most powerful, threatens to undo three millennia of progress. The gods are not dead at all. They merely sleep. And they are being hunted. Senior Inquisitor Tolde Breed is sent to the planet Crimeat to investigate the escape of one of the most deadly beings in the universe. Amongeratix, one of the three sons of the god-king is loose once again, the fabled Three. Tolde arrives on a world where heresy breeds insurrection and war is only a matter of time. Tolde is aided by Sister Abigail of the Order of Blood Witches in his quest to find Amongeratix and return him to Conclave custody before he can begin his reign of terror. What he doesn’t know is that the Three are already operating on Crimeat. Each serves a different emotion: Vengeance, Sorrow and Redemption. Their touch drives the various characters beyond themselves and towards an uncertain future that can only end one of two ways. Either the Three win and finally destroy the gods, or humanity stops them and continues to survive.

30 review for Dreams of Winter

  1. 5 out of 5

    D. Peach

    Dreams of Winter has many strong points. Freed clearly expended a great deal of effort in world-building and has created a complex and detailed set of worlds for his story with differing types of civilization and technology. Some planets chose to remain “non-technological” in nature, while others advanced to a level found in science fiction. The variation was surprising and engaging. Crimeat, the primary location for this book, is well-realized. Politics and governance cross worlds to maintain or Dreams of Winter has many strong points. Freed clearly expended a great deal of effort in world-building and has created a complex and detailed set of worlds for his story with differing types of civilization and technology. Some planets chose to remain “non-technological” in nature, while others advanced to a level found in science fiction. The variation was surprising and engaging. Crimeat, the primary location for this book, is well-realized. Politics and governance cross worlds to maintain order, peace, and safety. A ruling Conclave and policing Inquisition are the major forces in control. The addition of magic through the presence of Blood Witches adds another interesting element to the combination of characters. There’s plenty of intrigue and plotting as an old threat is unleashed upon Crimeat. Amongeratix, one of three giant sons of the god-king, breaks out of his prison and with his brothers has the capacity to wreak havoc upon all human life. Those in power develop plans to stop him and/or exploit the situation. Dreams of Winter is the first book in The Forgotten God Tales series, and though it ends with a major battle, the story is far from concluded. The writing is beautiful and rich with wonderful imagery, descriptions, and character development. The cast of characters is varied, well-rounded with backstories and consistent personalities, strengths, and flaws. The dialog feels natural. The challenge is that all this wonderfulness significantly slows down the pace. With a few exceptions, character introductions and story “set up” is still occurring 100 pages into the read. Expansive descriptions and backstory add to the slow pace. The omniscient point of view is well-crafted, but also tends to slow down the read with frequent shifts in perspective. Each characters’ thoughts are explored in each scene with internal commentary and occasional references to backstory. It adds up. I found myself wanting to read the dialog and scan the rest. I will admit to not being a fan of omniscient points of view because of the way they distance the reader from the characters. I found that the frequent POV shifts in the story prevented me from settling deeply into the experience of each scene’s main character. For that reason, I struggled to actually care about the characters and their situation. This book has gorgeous writing, and Crimeat is a well-crafted world. Readers who love deeply-delved characters and aren’t bothered by a slower pace may thoroughly enjoy the book.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Tweety Reads

    Dreams of Winter is the first book I’ve read from author Christian Freed, and I’ll be reading more in the future. DoW deals with lots of characters, and what I found really refreshing was there there wasn’t an obvious parallel of good and evil. There were traits to various characters I could see different types of readers responding to in different ways, so I can understand that a bunch of readers could all take very different things from the book. I felt this was a strong point of the book beca Dreams of Winter is the first book I’ve read from author Christian Freed, and I’ll be reading more in the future. DoW deals with lots of characters, and what I found really refreshing was there there wasn’t an obvious parallel of good and evil. There were traits to various characters I could see different types of readers responding to in different ways, so I can understand that a bunch of readers could all take very different things from the book. I felt this was a strong point of the book because allowing the reader freedom to determine their own feelings rather then have them forced upon you is much more refreshing. I devoured this one and I’ll be back for more from Freed very soon.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Grady

    A bristling journey into new possibilities North Carolina author Christian Warren Freed earned his degree in history from Campbell University and a Masters of Arts degree in Digital Communications from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He has served in the US Army for twenty years and now devotes his time to writing, having published over 20 books to date – including his inclusion in various anthologies. Military experience informs Christian’s writing, making credible the incredib A bristling journey into new possibilities North Carolina author Christian Warren Freed earned his degree in history from Campbell University and a Masters of Arts degree in Digital Communications from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He has served in the US Army for twenty years and now devotes his time to writing, having published over 20 books to date – including his inclusion in various anthologies. Military experience informs Christian’s writing, making credible the incredible worlds of science fiction in a most unique manner. For example, the nidus for this novel dates back to Christian’s Iraq tour in 2005 – 2006 when his thoughts about the beyond were stirred: ‘to explore whether we truly need God or the gods to justify our existence in the universe- albeit set in the middle of a galaxy spanning civil war.‘ Add to this stimulating postulate the author’s gift for electrifying prose, and A FORGOTTEN GODS series began, of which this is the initial volume. Inviting the reader to join this fantasy journey, the book opens with a new timeframe, A.G. (After Gods) and sets a unique sense of ‘somewhere’ in a most picturesque manner: ‘A single drop of rain fell. Lost quickly amongst the dust and grime of the village street, the raindrop went unnoticed. Who could have guessed that a single drop would alter the course of events set n motion thousands of years ago and change the face of the universe forever? Autumn’s bit was crisp this year... It should have been a time for celebration, a time to pay tribute to the gods for their generosity bestowed. As winter drew closer the people prepared for the worst…’ A fine atmosphere is painted and the epic story unfolds. The novel is lengthy and complex, but Christian has provided a guiding plot description: ‘It is a troubled time, for the old gods are returning and they want the universe back…Under the rigid guidance of the Conclave, the seven hundred known worlds carve out a new empire with the compassion and wisdom the gods once offered. But a terrible secret, known only to the most powerful, threatens to undo three millennia of progress. The gods are not dead at all. They merely sleep. And they are being hunted. Senior Inquisitor Tolde Breed is sent to the planet Crimeat to investigate the escape of one of the deadliest beings in the history of the universe: Amongeratix, one of the fabled THREE, sons of the god-king. Tolde arrives on a world where heresy breeds insurrection and war is only a matter of time. Aided by Sister Abigail of the Order of Blood Witches, and a company of Prekhauten Guards, Tolde hurries to find Amongeratix and return him to Conclave custody before he can restart his reign of terror. What he doesn’t know is that the Three are already operating on Crimeat.’ New concepts of time, outer space, conflicts between gods and man, and one fascinating exploration of the realm of superpowers, aka gods, make for an immersing, sweeping epic of the first order. Recommended for fantasy lovers.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Pegboard

    Dreams of Winter by Christian Warren Freed is the first in his Forgotten Gods tales. There was a god who had three sons; Amongeratix, Tannus, and one is not. After warring amongst themselves and destroying worlds, Amongeratix is captured and peace allows humans to forget. A time comes when Amongeratix escapes and monsters are real. Crimeat was the world where the Inquisitors chained him like an animal and cast a spell on him to restrain his powers that is no more. The Inquisitors are called on a Dreams of Winter by Christian Warren Freed is the first in his Forgotten Gods tales. There was a god who had three sons; Amongeratix, Tannus, and one is not. After warring amongst themselves and destroying worlds, Amongeratix is captured and peace allows humans to forget. A time comes when Amongeratix escapes and monsters are real. Crimeat was the world where the Inquisitors chained him like an animal and cast a spell on him to restrain his powers that is no more. The Inquisitors are called on again. Christian Warren Freed writes with great detail and passion. Dreams of Winter felt like a Charles Dickens novel turned science fiction. I couldn't help but be drawn to the characters who are superior physically and mentally. There is a strong drive to right the wrong these gods inflict on humans. I am looking forward to the next in this series, though I got chills just reading this novel.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Grymm Gevierre

    This is my first story that I’ve read by Freed, and I was impressed by the detailed multi-world-building done for this book (and, I assume, the series). Freed’s background shines in here in this story in providing his world with a rich history. From what I can tell Freed has a good number of books out, and the way this book is written really shows that he is a veteran of the craft. The story isn’t an uncommon one in reference to old gods. The old gods fight with each other in a power struggle. O This is my first story that I’ve read by Freed, and I was impressed by the detailed multi-world-building done for this book (and, I assume, the series). Freed’s background shines in here in this story in providing his world with a rich history. From what I can tell Freed has a good number of books out, and the way this book is written really shows that he is a veteran of the craft. The story isn’t an uncommon one in reference to old gods. The old gods fight with each other in a power struggle. Once upon a time, the good has triumphed and humanity, who was thrust into the center of the fight, has since forgotten that their existence relies on the two titanic gods not fighting (Amongeratix and Tannus). What stood out to me, though, is that as rich as the world itself is, the gods really don’t seem to develop in a sensical way (which, if I'm being fair, is usually the case in stories about the wars of gods). The two main brothers fight for control, and when Amongeratix escapes his prison we (humans) are on Death’s platter again, but realistically their reason for fighting and control seems to be overblown. There is a third brother, and I honestly couldn’t figure out why he was necessary at all, other than a minor plot device to break up some of the story a bit for pacing control (which, especially in the first hundred or so pages, really needed to be picked up). This story IS good, despite the above. I do think that as a part of a series there are unresolved issues that I just haven’t been through entirely. I definitely have to read the next one. However, as a first book, I feel like this should be the foundation balanced with foreshadowing and action and I left the story with more questions than I’d like. It’s worth the read, though. The writing is good, the world is rich. The description, though thick, allows for a great escape away from the real world. It is a very enjoyable book. I hope the next one clears up some of my questions!

  6. 5 out of 5

    Cat on the Mat

    This was a truly worthwhile read. It’s a pretty lengthy but fascinating sci-fi/ fantasy novel, with Greek God-like characters. I found the pace of the book to be about right and the plot really engaging. The author’s descriptions of the characters and the places are very detailed, which allowed me to imagine that i was right there in the fantasy along with the characters. In my opinion this is a great book for anyone wholes Fantasy/Sci-Fi novels. I will definitely recommend this book to friends.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Stephen R.

    'Dreams of Winter' is the first installment in the sci-fi series, 'A Forgotten God's Tale.' It is written by Freed, a US Army veteran, who has plenty of experience writing military fantasy novels, with over 20 books under his belt to date. Freed has a talent for immersing the reader into his fantasy worlds, and this story is no exception. Many pages are devoted to building the society in which his scenes take place, with rich and detailed descriptions. The story does tend to take a slower pace, 'Dreams of Winter' is the first installment in the sci-fi series, 'A Forgotten God's Tale.' It is written by Freed, a US Army veteran, who has plenty of experience writing military fantasy novels, with over 20 books under his belt to date. Freed has a talent for immersing the reader into his fantasy worlds, and this story is no exception. Many pages are devoted to building the society in which his scenes take place, with rich and detailed descriptions. The story does tend to take a slower pace, as a result of the elaborate world-building and character backstories, so it will be popular among those who enjoy a more measured speed with comprehensive scene and character development. The result of Freed's well-crafted descriptive narration is a believable set of characters with consistent personalities and actions. This story will be a joy to read for fantasy and sci-fi fans and will leave them hungry for the next volume.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Mandy

    Another stellar installment from Christian! As always Freed delivers with a unique and fresh objective and storyline. This one never relents, giving us a fast paced adventure. Can’t wait to see what else Freed delivers to us hungry readers.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Covid5769gmail.Com

    Dark, atmospheric, and violent, Dreams of Winter by Christian Warren Freed is definitely for fans of The Witcher of Game of Thrones. The plot is full of betrayal, deceit, and bloody battles that make Dreams of Winter a real page-turner. I thought the idea of dormant Gods waking up to claim back the universe was so interesting. With an escaped God ready to lay waste to the world, can a small band of humans prevent disaster? And is there more trouble yet to be discovered? Dreams of Winter is exciti Dark, atmospheric, and violent, Dreams of Winter by Christian Warren Freed is definitely for fans of The Witcher of Game of Thrones. The plot is full of betrayal, deceit, and bloody battles that make Dreams of Winter a real page-turner. I thought the idea of dormant Gods waking up to claim back the universe was so interesting. With an escaped God ready to lay waste to the world, can a small band of humans prevent disaster? And is there more trouble yet to be discovered? Dreams of Winter is exciting, full of action, and completely unique. It’s a great fantasy novel that I think many readers would enjoy. Bring on book two.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Tian

    Thank you to NetGalley for sharing an e-ARC with me in exchange for an honest review! I was intrigued by this story’s plot but unfortunately, I had to DNF this book at 30%. I had two main issues with this story and one of them is a “it’s not you, it’s me” situation. This book was far more violent that I thought it would be. I knew it would not be a sunshine and rainbows type of story but within the opening chapters there was a massacre of an entire town and a slaughter/prison-break scene. That j Thank you to NetGalley for sharing an e-ARC with me in exchange for an honest review! I was intrigued by this story’s plot but unfortunately, I had to DNF this book at 30%. I had two main issues with this story and one of them is a “it’s not you, it’s me” situation. This book was far more violent that I thought it would be. I knew it would not be a sunshine and rainbows type of story but within the opening chapters there was a massacre of an entire town and a slaughter/prison-break scene. That just really isn’t my cup of tea, but that is totally a personal preference and not a critique of the book itself. However, my second issue with this book is with the writing style. The book is told with an omniscient narrator, which is fine, but I found there to be way too many abrupt shifts in character, sometimes in the middle of a paragraph! It was a little hard to follow and was a little bit jarring to read. The author also used too many “pompous” adjectives repeatedly within the span of a few pages. It would have worked and had more impact if words like this were used sparingly and spaced far apart. But I kept seeing “miasmic”, “portent”, “fetid” and “foul” used within the span of a few pages to describe the same thing (albeit sometimes from a different character’s POV. The chapter introducing Moffo laid it out to me that he was a “shallow man” no less than 3 times over the course of a few pages. “Moffo Kain was a shallow man” “Maffo was shallow and an opportunist” “Moffo Kain was a shallow man, willing to forgo his own safety...” You see what I mean. I could tell the descriptions were meant to sound poetic and deep, but they just came across as nonsensical half the time (like “shallow rot gnawed at the dreamers”). Additionally, the author fell into the age-old mistake of “telling me” instead of “showing me” or showing me beautifully and then ruining it by telling me, in case I missed it. “The people were frightened. That much was certain. An undertone of fear laced the smoke thickened air”. A paragraph describing the broken landscape in a no-nonsense tone was followed by “A light miasma of suffering hovered just above ground level. The brownish mist was like a pall. Tolde and Mathias looked down on a scene of pure chaos”. There were definitely moments where I saw great writing shine through, but these moments were overwhelmed by awkwardly formed sentences, long-winded descriptions and explanations that repeated the same concept over and over, and poorly chosen/timed descriptors. It was difficult for me to get immersed in the actual story and plot when I felt like I was weeding through over-exhaustive descriptions to get to the point of what was happening in a particular scene. If you didn’t mind the quotes I pulled out, then I think you would really enjoy this story! It is filled with political intrigue, multiple words with their own technology/ruling system, and a compelling concept (trying to reign in a godly being bent on destruction). Unfortunately, it just wasn’t a book for me.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Luis Humberto Molinar Márquez

    [English review + Reseña en español] Dreams of Winter: A Forgotten Gods Tale, by Christian Warren Freed War Fighter Books. 2018 396 pages Genre / Tematics: Science Fiction and Fantasy Novel First part of the Forgotten Gods Series A war with the potential to reach epic levels is about to break out on various fronts on the planet Crimeat. Senior Inquisitor Tolde Breed and Sergeant Major Matthias are dispatched —along with a small army— to recapture the most violent of the mythical sons of the King of th [English review + Reseña en español] Dreams of Winter: A Forgotten Gods Tale, by Christian Warren Freed War Fighter Books. 2018 396 pages Genre / Tematics: Science Fiction and Fantasy Novel First part of the Forgotten Gods Series A war with the potential to reach epic levels is about to break out on various fronts on the planet Crimeat. Senior Inquisitor Tolde Breed and Sergeant Major Matthias are dispatched —along with a small army— to recapture the most violent of the mythical sons of the King of the Gods, who has managed to escape from a prison protected by arcane spells. Elisa, the bounty hunter, seeks to avenge a gruesome crime committed against her people years ago. Mollock Bolle, an old military man broken by his past, risks his life carrying information on the devastation that is coming. Ambitious and nefarious Baron Scura seeks full control of Lethendweil at any cost. A powerful secret group made up of members of the highest spheres seeks to awaken the ancient gods, who have lain dormant, scattered throughout the galaxy for more than three millennia. And in the midst of all these events, an ominous meeting among The Three recalls that previous encounter in which their anger left an entire planet dead and uninhabitable. This very interesting novel, set in the year 3,210 on a distant planet, is full of adventure, secrets, intrigue, danger, action and violence. The characters and their dialogues feel totally natural, alive and transcendent. The descriptions of places are eloquent, precise, vivid, even poetic: "his words were pregnant with a slowly understood fear." The implications of the events that unfold on planet Crimeat could not be greater: the possible awakening of long-asleep gods, a fight to the death between three powerful demigods and a war that involves nations and surely entire worlds. Even though there are many characters weaving their threads at the same time, the plot is quite clear and the narrative maintains an excellent rhythm throughout the entire book. The motivations of each character are clear and well-founded, and their persons have the perfect balance between logic, emotion, accident and reaction. The mix between elements of technologies with different degrees of development (energy weapons and flying transports along with rifles and horses) seemed strange to me at first, but it immediately merges into this story that reunites humans with gods and advanced technology with religion and magic. Anyway, I totally recommend this book! ------- Dreams of Winter: A Forgotten Gods Tale, por Christian Warren Freed War Fighter Books. 2018 396 páginas. Género / Temática: Novela de Ciencia Ficción y Fantasía Primera parte de la serie Forgotten Gods Una guerra con el potencial de alcanzar niveles épicos está a punto de estallar desde varios frentes en el planeta Crimeat. El Inquisidor Senior Tolde Breed y el Sargento Mayor Matthias son enviados —junto con un pequeño ejército— a recapturar al más violento de los míticos hijos del Rey de los dioses, quien ha logrado escapar de una prisión protegida por hechizos arcanos. Elisa, la cazadora de recompensas, busca vengar un espantoso crimen cometido en contra de su pueblo años atrás. Mollock Bolle, un viejo militar quebrado por el pasado, arriesga su vida portando información privilegiada sobre la devastación que se avecina. El ambicioso y nefasto Barón Scura busca el control total de Lethendweil a como dé lugar. Un poderoso grupo secreto conformado por miembros de las altas esferas busca despertar a los antiguos dioses, que yacen dormidos por toda la galaxia desde hace más de tres milenios. Y en medio de todos estos sucesos, una reunión aciaga entre Los Tres recuerda aquel encuentro anterior en el que su ira dejó muerto e inhabitable a un planeta entero. Esta interesantísima novela, ambientada en el año 3,210 en un planeta distante, está llena de aventura, secretos, intriga, peligro, acción y violencia. Los personajes y sus diálogos se sienten totalmente naturales, vivos y trascendentes. Las descripciones de lugar son elocuentes, precisas, vívidas, incluso poéticas: “sus palabras estaban preñadas con un miedo lentamente comprendido”. Las implicaciones de los eventos que se desencadenan en el planeta Crimeat no podrían ser mayores: el posible despertar de dioses largamente dormidos, una pelea a muerte entre tres poderosos semidioses y una guerra que involucra a naciones y seguramente a mundos enteros. Aun cuando son muchos los personajes que tejen sus hilos al mismo tiempo, la trama es bastante clara y la narrativa mantiene un ritmo excelente a lo largo de todo el libro. Las motivaciones de cada personaje son claras y bien fundamentadas, y sus personas tienen el equilibrio perfecto entre lógica, emoción, accidente y reacción. La mezcla entre elementos de tecnologías con distintos grados de desarrollo (armas de energía y transportes voladores junto a rifles y caballos) me pareció en principio extraña, pero inmediatamente se funde en esta historia que reúne humanos con dioses y tecnología avanzada con religión y magia. En fin, ¡recomiendo totalmente este libro!

  12. 5 out of 5

    Beth

    I wanted to give this book an honest try because it seems as though the author poured his heart into creating this series. However, it's clear right from the beginning that this is self-published for a reason. He has some good ideas for creating a future world set up in kingdoms, but the writing was difficult to get through. First of all, my paperback copy had numerous typo errors of the sort that wouldn't be caught by a spell-checker (e.g. "rub" instead of "run", "then" when he means "there", e I wanted to give this book an honest try because it seems as though the author poured his heart into creating this series. However, it's clear right from the beginning that this is self-published for a reason. He has some good ideas for creating a future world set up in kingdoms, but the writing was difficult to get through. First of all, my paperback copy had numerous typo errors of the sort that wouldn't be caught by a spell-checker (e.g. "rub" instead of "run", "then" when he means "there", etc). It's not the end of the world, but did interrupt my reading flow on more than one occasion. Secondly, he attempts to use high value words but they only come across as awkward because the phrasing doesn't suit them. This is especially apparent when exposition is occurring but less so when characters are speaking. He also overstates some things, for example I can't remember how many old people are described as having "liver spots" and how many times it's mentioned that Abigail was floating "inches off the ground". Thirdly, he uses the third-person omniscient narrator but there are so many named characters that it becomes confusing for the reader. The list of named characters in this book is very long, especially since most of the characters at one time or another are the conduit for the omniscient narrator for a scene. There are several characters and side plots that could have been reduced or eliminated altogether without losing the main plot of the whole book. An appendix with a character list and a map would have been helpful. TL/DR: Interesting ideas, but definitely needed a better editor to catch errors, improve phrasing, and remove unnecessary side characters/plots.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Stephanie

    Dreams of Winter's story line revolves around the escape of a-thought to be dead by most-God of war, Amongeratix. Blood hungry, masochistic, and a bit upset at being imprisoned for several millenia, this isn't the sort of God you want running rampant in Crimeat. (The World we learn about in this fantasy tale). The God's brother, Tolde, searches for him before things become truly apocalyptic, but he himself has a pretty blood-thirsty mentality too... The trouble that two war-mongering Gods, and a Dreams of Winter's story line revolves around the escape of a-thought to be dead by most-God of war, Amongeratix. Blood hungry, masochistic, and a bit upset at being imprisoned for several millenia, this isn't the sort of God you want running rampant in Crimeat. (The World we learn about in this fantasy tale). The God's brother, Tolde, searches for him before things become truly apocalyptic, but he himself has a pretty blood-thirsty mentality too... The trouble that two war-mongering Gods, and a third that does uncontrollable genocide but then feels guilty about it catches the eye of three mortals that either want to start the war, avoid the war, or seek a sort of vengeance. This fantasy story excels in its prose, descriptions are very detailed and the author makes sure the reader sees, feels, and even smells the scenery of this new imagined world. Battle scenes were realistic and they played out in my head as if I were cowering while they happened. The language and writing is also reminiscent of an older style and steers clear of slang and modern idioms. The only issues I had with this story was pacing, and narrative. Because of the enormous amount of detail, parts of the plot, like something as trivial as walking the landscape took up several pages, and i'd sometimes forget what the main point was after side-tracking for a bit with the smells. It made the story slower. The story is in 3rd person, but it is an omnipresent narrative. Everyone's thoughts are available to me, and because it didn't focus on just one person, I kept rereading trying to figure out whose thought it was. A bit too much head-swapping for me, I couldn't concentrate on just one protagonist. All in all, it is an entertaining idea and read that will appeal to most fantasy readers that like a taste of greek-like Gods with their sword-fighting and witches!

  14. 5 out of 5

    Fiona

    30 %... That is how far I got. 30%. And truly, I really, really struggled to read this far. It’s a shame, because I usually finish a book no matter what. But with this book, it was just impossible for me. In an entire universe, filled with inhabited worlds under the guidance of the conclave, gods have been sleeping. However, Amongeratix, one of the three fabled gods, son of the god-king, has escaped his prison. Tolde Breed, a senior Inquisitor, is sent to investigate the escape and eventually cap 30 %... That is how far I got. 30%. And truly, I really, really struggled to read this far. It’s a shame, because I usually finish a book no matter what. But with this book, it was just impossible for me. In an entire universe, filled with inhabited worlds under the guidance of the conclave, gods have been sleeping. However, Amongeratix, one of the three fabled gods, son of the god-king, has escaped his prison. Tolde Breed, a senior Inquisitor, is sent to investigate the escape and eventually capture Amongeratix before he can resume his reign of terror. Good things first: The cover is beautifully interesting. Together with the title, the main reason for me to read the synopsis. The plot seemed quite interesting and I was eager to start reading. This book has many genres: fantasy, science fiction, drama, political intrigue and mythology. All genres I actually find interesting in combination with a good story. The world building is very detailed and gives a good picture of how it looks like. I enjoyed how there was an old vibe going on, even with modern (futuristic) technology involved. The first chapter started well, with some nice action and the pace was alright! The same can be said about the first part of chapter nine. Now for the bad things: It is incredibly slow! Slow in pace, slow in story progress, just overall slow. It has taken me over 2 weeks to get to 30 %. I just couldn’t be bothered. The book is told with a third-person omniscient narrator, which I don’t necessarily mind, but there are so many characters in this book, that it got really confusing as to which character he was speaking about. Speaking of many characters… Each chapter introduced a bunch of new characters. And they were all pretty much named. It even got so far that I couldn’t remember names and had to figure out whether I had read about this person before and if so, what I had read. And that rarely happens, ever. A characters list and a map would have been a great help. Even with only 30 % read I felt like some characters could have been eliminated without hurting the plot to make It more readable. So would have been a different choice of words. A use of many high vocabulary words, within sentences I didn’t find completely fitting. It was distracting, unnecessary and it took me right out of my reading flow. Which I couldn’t get into anyway, but this did not help at all. And then the descriptions. I like details. They are necessary to be able to get sucked into a world that doesn’t exist. To be able for me to feel like I am there. There were plenty descriptions here. As I said, the world building part is very detailed and descripted. Which is good. What isn’t good is a description of more than 3 pages about very simplistic things or surroundings. Especially not when it keeps repeating thing. Overly descripting is a loss of pace and a loss of imagination. Something else that bothered me was that almost all of the nine chapters were ‘telling’ me the story, and not showing me. which is a shame. It Just really seemed to me that the chapter were so stretched out, it never really got to a story. It was just explaining characters and surroundings, with occasionally a turn back to the plot. Overall the plot is something that could have made an interesting book, had it been executed better. It was just not for me. I was kindly provided an e-arc by Net Galley. I've left this review voluntarily and all opinions are my own.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Jamie (Books and Ladders)

    DNF @ 7% I usually try to read longer than this (25% is my usual stopping point) but this was just ... so bad. Nothing made sense. It felt like the words were all there but weren’t actually telling a story. And the pacing was not great. I have no idea what the plot is and I don’t care to know because this is not the book for me.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Brin Murray

    Well, I started this book and was quite excited for the first significant chunk. It’s got a fairly thrilling beginning, with a monster bursting from the woods, and the language and descriptions used are often evocative, so there is a strong sense of place and the world building is clear and grand in scale. A ruling Conclave sits above worlds, along with a universe-wide Inquisition. Back in pre-historical times, there was a Clash-of-the-Titans style falling out between the Gods. One son of the Ki Well, I started this book and was quite excited for the first significant chunk. It’s got a fairly thrilling beginning, with a monster bursting from the woods, and the language and descriptions used are often evocative, so there is a strong sense of place and the world building is clear and grand in scale. A ruling Conclave sits above worlds, along with a universe-wide Inquisition. Back in pre-historical times, there was a Clash-of-the-Titans style falling out between the Gods. One son of the King of the Gods, Amongeratix, is kind of a dark rage-filled evil war God. His brother Tannus, who is supposed to be a kind of counter-force in the Universe and is definitely more on the side of humankind, is not much better – he is also insanely war-like, and they’re locked in an endless titanic conflict. But Amongeratix has been secretly locked away in a prison on the world of Crimeat for many years, mainly due to the efforts of an inquisitor called Tolde Breed. Only now Amongeratix has escaped. The third God brother is called Sorrow, and he seems to be the only one who is not blood-crazed – only, for some reason he committed an atrocity on a village thirty years before the real story begins, as if he is kind of fatefully bound to do bad things even though he has a conscience (I didn’t quite understand why). At least he tries to stop his war-like brothers from destroying worlds with their conflict. Anyway, so Tolde Breed and his trusty sergeant Matthias of the Praetorian Guard (it’s not exactly that, but something very similar – just like Amongeratix reminds me somewhat of Vercingetorix, held by the Romans for five years in a pit before they finally executed the poor sod) are sent to try and capture Amongeratix again, along with the help of a Blood Witch, because it is thought that the God must have had help escaping his prison, and blood witches are good at that sort of thing. Helping spot witchery. There are also machinations and intrigue on the planet of Crimeat: Baron Scura is angling to become head of the council there, and manipulates and assassinates many people to achieve his goal. Plus also helps to start a war. One of the main characters is a woman assassin, Elisa, whose family were murdered by the third God brother Sorrow all those years ago. Another is Mollock Bolle, who was the village character who originally saw the shadowy monster charge out of the woods, and has had a somewhat complex and persecuted life since. These two are towards the end identified as the Paladin and the Prophet, individuals with a destiny, and Sorrow helps them escape the final brutal conflict between his two brothers, presumably for their destinies to unfold in the next book. Which is all quite lengthy, and sounds like it should be the basis for a great fantasy. But while the story definitely has potential, I gradually found it harder going than I anticipated. I think there were two things cooled my enthusiasm. The first is pacing: for me, it’s too slow. Although there is a huge battle scene at the end, and various sections are enlivened by assassinations etc, there is a lot of what I would call padding. I know authors get excited about scenes, and want to detail every flicker of a candle and breath of wind and mysterious moody shadow in the dark, but for me there was far too much of this. Plus the conversations were often very long, taking two pages to state what an economical writer could have managed in a couple of lines. Every nuance was detailed, every line spoken was attributed, and too much of what was said was unnecessary and failed to move the plot along. I know many fantasies are full of detail. Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time series starts off grippingly, but gets slower and slower with each volume until the story moves along at a snail’s pace. I got bored and stopped reading it – but it’s a best seller and incredibly popular, so many people presumably enjoy that massive detail. Not everyone likes their prose to be concise and economical, and life would be pretty dull if everyone wrote in the same way. But to me, if there’s too much padding of this sort, then you’re no longer world-building but losing momentum. This story should have had heaps of narrative drive, but I struggled to keep hold of it while wading through unnecessary words. The other thing that ultimately made it a less enjoyable read for me was that there wasn’t a significant protagonist I found myself really rooting for. Elisa is probably the closest, but she doesn’t even come into it for - well, not for a long time. Page 70, maybe? And she’s not that huge a character. Even the nice inquisitor guy, Tolde Breed – he’s okay, but he’s a bit of a dry old stick and he doesn’t come into it till reasonably late either. For me that’s huge. You have to root for the characters, and become emotionally engaged, because if you’re not, it’s hard to care what happens. The story just becomes a grand overview of the universe and these various human factions plotting in their high councils etc. But even though personally I want a few more humans to care about, Dreams Of Winter might well appeal to readers of fantasy who are big on world building, and certainly the descriptions are evocative. Also the story is definitely there, and on a grand scale. For more of Brin's reviews go to: http://www.brinmurray.com/

  17. 5 out of 5

    Robin Nemeth

    This book was selected by my book club and I was looking forward to reading something different than what we typically read. However, I feel mostly let down. The author attempts to create a futuristic universe with fantastical and militaristic tie-ins. I think the underlying idea is very interesting, it just needs some work and MAJOR parring down. There were also a couple of areas where the narrative was very good, almost poetic and deep. Chapter 9 gives an account of the battle between Tannus an This book was selected by my book club and I was looking forward to reading something different than what we typically read. However, I feel mostly let down. The author attempts to create a futuristic universe with fantastical and militaristic tie-ins. I think the underlying idea is very interesting, it just needs some work and MAJOR parring down. There were also a couple of areas where the narrative was very good, almost poetic and deep. Chapter 9 gives an account of the battle between Tannus and Amongeratix with the gods looking down. It writing really illuminates the scene, you see the deep seated resent between the brothers, and it has glimmers of Greek mythology within it. Chapter 10 describes the summoning of the Blood Witches and the scene really drew me in. I wish there was so much more about the Blood Witches and their history! These stood out to me, unfortunately because they were so fleeting. There are far too many characters, many of which seem superfluous. This being a series, possible they come into play in a much bigger way in the other books; I will give him the benefit of the doubt. Regardless, an appendix with a cast of characters would be highly appreciated and helpful. So would a MAP! When creating worlds it is very helpful to the reader to have a map to help visualize events and locations. The author also tries to incorporate fancy vocabulary, which isn’t a problem in and of itself. The problem is that the words are thrown in and make readability awkward. They stand out like sore thumbs because it doesn’t fit the rest of the writing style. Another criticism about word choice is that the author repeats the use of these high vocab words which also makes them stand out as even more forced and awkward. The word “anathema” is used in more than one occasion. For such an obscure word, it makes it seem as though the author was trying to prove something by including it (sorry, I know that sounds harsh). There are multiple instances of this. The narration style is a third person omniscient narrator; narration flips from multiple characters’ points of view. Again, the author does this too much. Worse yet, is that new, inconsequential characters get the lead in the narration at times. Not helpful. And finally, a serious edit needs to take place. There are many errors where the wrong word has been included; for instance “rub” instead of “run.” That, along with many typos and awkward phrasing, make reading this book a chore and unenjoyable. I think there is the basis of a good idea here, but some serious editing and plot structuring needs to take place. Less is more!

  18. 4 out of 5

    Nikki Mitchell

    Actual rating: 3.5 Stars out of 5 Trigger Warning: Adult language and graphic violence. Some sexual content. In this sci-fi crossed with fantasy, the universe is in trouble. The Gods have abandoned the humans after destroying each other in a fight that obliterated an entire planet. Now, they slumber within each of their own worlds, and it seems as if humans may be able to thrive without the Gods. But that all changes when one of the Three, the sons of the Gods, is broken out of prison. Now, each o Actual rating: 3.5 Stars out of 5 Trigger Warning: Adult language and graphic violence. Some sexual content. In this sci-fi crossed with fantasy, the universe is in trouble. The Gods have abandoned the humans after destroying each other in a fight that obliterated an entire planet. Now, they slumber within each of their own worlds, and it seems as if humans may be able to thrive without the Gods. But that all changes when one of the Three, the sons of the Gods, is broken out of prison. Now, each of the Three, whom many think are only myths, are free on the planet Crimeat. They have the power to destroy that world, and even the universe. Will the Conclave and Inquisition be able to stop them before it's too late? As soon as you open this novel, you are in a completely different universe. There are unique planets with their own governing systems and use of technology, not to mention the many different races of beings. I found the planet of Crimeat--where almost the entire story takes place--to be quite endearing. Even with access to advanced technology such as flying cars, ion guns, and the like, most of its inhabitants still preferred to keep life simple with horses for travel. It gave the story a very unique feel--both nostalgic AND futuristic simultaneously; the best of both worlds. With the amount of detail given into the backstories of the different planets and races, there is a lot of information simply thrown at the reader in the beginning of the novel. At first, it was very difficult for me to remember names (of people, places, governing systems, etc.) and I could not quite get into the story itself as I was busy figuring out who was who and what their motivations were. I would count it as a pro that there are many different POVs and "main" characters in the story, but it did take some getting used to. It also made the plot itself a bit hard to decipher, as I couldn't remember which character had power in which city or over which other characters. However, around the middle of the novel, I became much more familiar with the characters, and I was able to dive more deeply into the storyline itself. Going along with this, I wish there was a map of the different planets, either in connection with each other, or of each individual planet's layout. This would have made the story so much easier to follow along with, especially in the beginning, when we were hopping onto different planets to meet new characters. Even with my confusion in the beginning of the novel, the writing kept me engaged. The writing style is absolutely beautiful, and made me want to keep reading, even when I had no idea what was going on, or which character I was reading about. The writing makes the story and its characters real. They're not just people that I'm reading about; they're true fighters that are hanging onto their last hope. It makes the story compelling and a pleasure to read. Overall, I believe that this novel will grab sci-fi enthusiasts immediately. Those used to juggling different races, planets, and characters will love this story from the get-go. For the readers who are not as familiar with the sci-fi genre, this is still a good read if you can keep up for the first half. The second half of the novel is where things truly start to hit the fan, and I was racing the characters to the end. See this and my other book reviews at thebookdragondotblog.wordpress.com

  19. 5 out of 5

    Nisha Joshi (in the midst of an Austengasm)

    The cover attracted me (yes, I am a sucker for great book covers). And the story. I love high fantasy and I was really happy when the publisher, Warfighter Books and Netgalley approved my request. It is rare to have so many genres in a book - high/dark fantasy, science fiction, mythology, political intrigue, violence, and drama. In such cases, it is very easy for the author to mess it all up and create a mush. But Christian Warren Freed has managed to tell a cohesive and riveting story. The world The cover attracted me (yes, I am a sucker for great book covers). And the story. I love high fantasy and I was really happy when the publisher, Warfighter Books and Netgalley approved my request. It is rare to have so many genres in a book - high/dark fantasy, science fiction, mythology, political intrigue, violence, and drama. In such cases, it is very easy for the author to mess it all up and create a mush. But Christian Warren Freed has managed to tell a cohesive and riveting story. The world-building is something spectacular, and so are the character descriptions. One of the three Gods, Amongeratix, has escaped from a high-security prison on the planet of Crimeat. It is up to Senior Inquisitor Tolde Breed to bring him back. Unfortunately, the said God is one of the deadliest, so Breed isn't exactly looking forward to capture him. What Breed doesn't know is that Amongeratix, along with his two brothers are already working their way through Crimeat. Each of them has a different quality that they can spread to the people. The work of the Conclave to maintain peace on Crimeat with the Order of the Inquisition and the ruthless Prekhauten Guards is about to be undone. Breed must work swiftly to prevent humanity from ending. The war details are good, which I read that the author, with his Army background, has a good grip over. A good first book with just the right hook. Would love to read the entire series and other books by Christian Warren Freed as well. Just a note: This is not an easy read or something to be read over the weekend. The passages are pretty descriptive, considering that there is a whole new world to build. Just take time to read and soak it all in!

  20. 5 out of 5

    Lacy Dove

    Christian Freed does a wonderful job of enticing the reader with quick action as well as drawing the reader into the long game of suspense and mystery. Dreams of Winter is an entertaining review of the role of God(s) in humanity, and how that faith mingles with human tendency. Exploring political relationships, religious propriety, and modern science fiction, the first book in the Forgotten Gods series is a page turner worth reading.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Dylan Chase

    Loved the storyline and setup. Great flow and lots of characters that are well put together. The combination of fantasy and sci-fi is really well done. Looking forward to the next book!

  22. 5 out of 5

    Shelley

    Author's guest post at my blog: https://bookfare.blogspot.com/2021/01... Author's guest post at my blog: https://bookfare.blogspot.com/2021/01...

  23. 4 out of 5

    Danielle Gates

    Dreams of Winter by Christian Warren Freed was definitely a good read! The cover of the book caught my eye and the description really made me want to read the book. This book has a great mix of fantasy and science. I really enjoyed the aspect of the old gods mixing with this new world and new technology. The characters grabbed and held my attention throughout the book. The plot was enthralling and kept the pages turning. I wanted to keep reading to find out what would happen next. I love action Dreams of Winter by Christian Warren Freed was definitely a good read! The cover of the book caught my eye and the description really made me want to read the book. This book has a great mix of fantasy and science. I really enjoyed the aspect of the old gods mixing with this new world and new technology. The characters grabbed and held my attention throughout the book. The plot was enthralling and kept the pages turning. I wanted to keep reading to find out what would happen next. I love action in books and this one did not disappoint! I would absolutely recommend this book. Thanks to Netgalley for the ARC for my honest opinion.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Stuart Aken

    Whilst a devotee of Science Fiction, I admit to being less than impressed by most Space Opera, so I come to this book with baggage. This is one in a series of books with the collective title ‘A Forgotten Gods Tale’ and I have no knowledge of the rest of the books. If you love action in your space fiction, and empathise with the soldier’s mind and philosophy, you’ll probably be engrossed in this tale from the outset. Whilst the characters, and there are many of them, are generally well drawn, the o Whilst a devotee of Science Fiction, I admit to being less than impressed by most Space Opera, so I come to this book with baggage. This is one in a series of books with the collective title ‘A Forgotten Gods Tale’ and I have no knowledge of the rest of the books. If you love action in your space fiction, and empathise with the soldier’s mind and philosophy, you’ll probably be engrossed in this tale from the outset. Whilst the characters, and there are many of them, are generally well drawn, the omniscient point of view prevents the reader getting close to them. As the tale unwound, I found I was unable to accurately determine who was protagonist and who was antagonist. This made it impossible for me to empathise with anyone. The story is so full of deception, betrayal, shifted loyalties, myth and uncertainty that I became lost in the complexities of the plot. There’s some great writing here. And the story, convoluted, wide-ranging and intricate, will appeal to those who love the genre. For me, frequent shifts in viewpoint and location made the read more difficult than it should be. I suspect there are at least two books here: some pauses in the relentless action that consists mostly of brutal battle scenes would ease the reader along between the acts of violence. I felt almost physically bruised during portions of the story. There are a number of underlying threads and themes, but all appear negative and dark. There was, for me, no light at the end of the tunnel. Perhaps I shouldn’t have been seeking it, but I hoped for some redemption after the violence, treachery, pointless courage and endless brutality. But I was filled with a compulsion to finish the tale. I did want to know what happened. Unfortunately, as this is a series, the ‘end’ was no more than a close to this chapter of events, and the struggle goes on. Not for me, however. There is great imagination here, a well-developed world set in a universe far into the future, but with battle scenes that, but for the advanced weapons, could have been played out in a 20th century war. The underlying role of the gods appealed to me at first, as these creatures were displayed as deities for whom human beings were, for most of the time, largely irrelevant. I could almost imagine an analogy with the myth and legend that characterises most organised religion on Earth, except that, as the story unfolds, these creatures are given so much life that they cease to act as the fantasies they clearly are. They become too real, too physical, too overbearing to be relegated to the role of simple likenesses of deities in current positions of supremacy in our modern world. As a non-believer, I see all gods as insubstantial constructs of those who create them, but these became solid and concrete; too substantial to exist. Readers who enjoy the blasts of future weapons, the dark humour of the uniformed men who deal in death for a living, the conspiracies of greedy political leaders bent on power at any cost, there is much to be enjoyed in this book. For me, the saving grace was the analogy with corrupt religion and the parallel simile with political life in a world driven by the power-mad. I can’t honestly say I enjoyed the book. But it kept me reading to the end.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Entrada Book Review

    Dreams of Winter by Christian Warren Freed is the first installment in the series A Forgotten Gods Tale. It sets the stage for what promises to be an epic fantasy tale. Author Christian Warren Freed’s combat experience is evident, along with his ability to create vivid new worlds in this story about people trying to survive a civil war that encompasses worlds. After three millennia of peace and progress, things are changing in the known worlds. All seven hundred are being plunged into civil war. Dreams of Winter by Christian Warren Freed is the first installment in the series A Forgotten Gods Tale. It sets the stage for what promises to be an epic fantasy tale. Author Christian Warren Freed’s combat experience is evident, along with his ability to create vivid new worlds in this story about people trying to survive a civil war that encompasses worlds. After three millennia of peace and progress, things are changing in the known worlds. All seven hundred are being plunged into civil war. The old gods aren’t dead, they are only sleeping and certain groups are hunting them. The Conclave has guided the known worlds since the gods disappeared. They bestow the wisdom and compassion previously provided by the gods. However, this peace is threatened when the select few that know the gods’ fate find out that they are in danger. Not everyone wants the old gods to return. When one of the mythical THREE escapes from imprisonment, Tolde Breed, a Senior Inquisitor with The Conclave is sent to Crimeat. The being he is chasing is none other than Amongeratix, one of the sons of the god-king. Tolde Breed’s task to capture the god-king’s son before he can start his reign of terror and return him to The Conclave. Aided by a member of the Order of Blood Witches, Sister Abigail, they arrive on Crimeat to discover that The Three are already there. Vengeance, Sorrow, and Redemption are already present on a planet where heresy starts insurrections and it’s only a matter of time until war begins. In the style of the Safehold and Fire and Ice series, author Christian Warren Freed has created a vivid universe. His smooth writing style makes it easy to envision the various worlds and follow the various storylines. “A single drop of rain fell. Lost quickly amongst the dust and grime of the village street, the raindrop went unnoticed. Who could have guessed that a single drop would alter the course of events set in motion thousands of years ago and change the face of the universe forever?” There is a lot going on in the novel when sons of the old gods return and civil war across the universe is evident. The complexity of the story is one of the elements that make it a great read. Each character is fleshed out and easily identifiable. Dreams of Winter is a strong introduction to a new fantasy series that follows slightly in the footsteps of George R.R. Martin in scope. It contains all of the elements readers expect from fantasy fiction, while still being fresh and new. Whether readers are new to fantasy or long-time fans, Dreams of Winter by Christian Warren Freed is a great way to spend a few hours. As the first book in the upcoming series, Osiris will leave readers wanting more. Hopefully, the second installment in the Derek Cross series will be out soon, and not leave readers wanting more for too long. A breakout novel that will leave you wanting more.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Nicole Courtney

    This book had an interesting ideas. What attracted me was the premise of a futuristic world where someone travels there for adventures. It kind of reminded me slightly of Warhammer and that sort of universe setting. The world building was quite good, there were quite a few interesting characters. This is a sort of series that would be good for fans of the Witcher and Game of Thrones. The adventure is relative fast paced. Details are very well described. I will recommend it to friends that like f This book had an interesting ideas. What attracted me was the premise of a futuristic world where someone travels there for adventures. It kind of reminded me slightly of Warhammer and that sort of universe setting. The world building was quite good, there were quite a few interesting characters. This is a sort of series that would be good for fans of the Witcher and Game of Thrones. The adventure is relative fast paced. Details are very well described. I will recommend it to friends that like fantasy/sci-fi adventure books.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Books Shelf

    Easy-paced, intriguing and addicting A great first book of the Forgotten Gods Tale series. Easy-paced, intriguing, and addicting - I read the book in less than 2 days and am already reading The Madman on the Rocks! I really do hope that the rest of the series would be as compelling as Dreams of Winter. P.S. The book cover is awesome! Christian BooksShelf Reviewer

  28. 4 out of 5

    Rosana Penna

  29. 4 out of 5

    Garfield Grammes

  30. 4 out of 5

    Tilda Kuschel

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