• Beyond

  • Founding of Valdemar Series, Book 1
  • By: Mercedes Lackey
  • Narrated by: Paul Woodson
  • Length: 12 hrs and 13 mins
  • 4.8 out of 5 stars (428 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Within the Eastern Empire, Duke Kordas Valdemar rules a tiny, bucolic Duchy that focuses mostly on horse breeding. Anticipating the day when the Empire's exploitative and militant leaders would not be content to leave them alone, Korda's father set out to gather magicians in the hopes of one day finding a way to escape and protect the people of the Duchy from tyranny.

The signs in the Empire are increasingly dire. Under the direction of the Emperor, mages have begun to harness the power of dark magics, including blood magic, the powers of the Abyssal Planes, and the binding and "milking" of Elemental creatures.

But then one of the Duchy's mages has a breakthrough. There is a way to place a Gate at a distance so far from the Empire that it is unlikely the Emperor can find or follow them as they evacuate everyone that is willing to leave.

But time is running out, and Kordas has been summoned to the Emperor's Court.

Can his reputation as a country bumpkin and his acting skills buy him and his people the time they need to flee? Or will the Emperor lose patience, invade to strip Valdemar of everything of worth, and send its conscripted people into the front lines of the Imperial wars?

©2021 Mercedes Lackey (P)2021 Tantor

What listeners say about Beyond

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Baron Valdemar for the win!

A wonderful return to everything I adore about Mercedes Lackey and the Valdemar books. I can't recommend this highly enough, especially since I struggled so much to find enjoyment reading about Mags for so long

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Exceptional Listen

Been waiting a long time for this book. Impatient for the next one in the series.Been reading this series since was a teenager in the 80s

7 people found this helpful

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Finally

This is the story that we've been waiting for since we met Vanyel so long ago. I thoroughly enjoyed the story and the performance of the reader was out of this world. I highly recommend this book for anyone..

6 people found this helpful

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Best Beginning Ever

I love all the books in the world Valdemar resides from the Mage Wars to Owls Flight books. This book in the new series has become my new favorite and I can't wait for the next one. Those that enjoy Mercedes Lackey books will not be disappointed.

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Great story

The story was very good. A little twist and turn here and there that kept the plot interesting.

The narrator was not great, but acceptable.

Through most of the book, I kept thinking, “I thought Valdemar was a Baron not a Duke!”

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Love it!

Narrator is very good. And the story is very engaging and, at moments, very funny. I had some heads turn when I laughed out loud at several points. I will be anxiously awaiting the next book.

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Finally!!!

I simply loved this story- and I am looking for Book 2 😊 In the meantime I have now introduced my granddaughter to the Valdemar series and my most favorite author. Thank you Mercedes Lackey for all the years of incredible stories!

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Superb!

Another great tale of Valdemar. The author fleshed out the story of the beginnings of Valdemar. An engaging story, with an excellent performance by the narrator. I was especially taken with the Vrondi.

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never expected an EPIC NPC man reference.

a strong origin to the kingdom of valdemar. i enjoyed every second of this audiobook.

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Drawn out and rather boring

I love Mercedes Lackey and her Valdemer books but this one was rather boring. I actually had a tough time getting through it. I am still hopeful that the next book in the series improves.

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  • Vanessa
  • 11-18-21

At last!

This is something I've been wanting for years - the back story of how Valdemar got started and I am not disappointed!
It was beautifully read and the story fit together perfectly.
The Earth elementals place in this book was heart breaking and no 'thing' should go through that.

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 10-19-21

Enjoyed audiobook

Loved the book. Great author and narrator. Likeable characters. Horrible villain. Story feels finished but know there must be a continuation. Look forward to what happens next. How will the story continue. Present story unexpected story line ending. Hope sequel appears soon.

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  • A Young
  • 01-10-22

Beyond is another comfortable Valdemar read

Yet another back story to fill in the numerous unexplained holes of Valdemars background.
Obviously still reading this series and it's offshoots. Please keep up the good works despite jealous bookbinders.