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Caine's Law (Acts of Caine: Act of Atonement, Book 2) Paperback – April 3, 2012

58 customer reviews
Book 4 of 4 in the Acts of Caine Series

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Editorial Reviews


Praise for Caine's Law
"Getting Caine's Law made me feel like a kid on Christmas Day -- where Santa was the toughest, smartest, meanest SOB you could imagine, and he had a huge damn knife. Best. Holidays. EVER."--John Scalzi, author of Old Man's War

“Expect multiple plot threads that loop wildly and unpredictably between past and present, expletive-laden dialogue, havoc, torture and mass destruction. For starters.  [Caine's Law is] brutal, witty, insightful, addictive, frequently baffling and altogether astonishing.”—Kirkus Reviews

"Through character moments of mirth and despair, to scenes of awe struck power and emotion, this book is intellectually and emotionally powerful. This novel is beyond entertainment, but it’s also entertaining. I loved it. What more is there to say? If you’re looking for a serious series to dig into, this one is deserving of your attention. Follow it through, and Caine’s Law will not disappoint."--Roqoo Depot

"Easily one of my favorite novels of 2012."--SFF World

Praise for Matthew Stover’s Caine series
"Matthew Woodring Stover's 'Acts of Caine' series is hands down one of the most bad-ass, brutal -- and brilliant -- fantasy series of the last double-decade. You know this if you're already reading it. If you're not already reading it, then good lord, it's time you found out."--John Scalzi, author of Old Man's War

“Marvelous . . . Day of the Jackal meets Lord of the Rings.”—Simon R. Green, author of the Nightside series, on Heroes Die
“Blends science, magic, and martial arts into an action-packed tale of adventure and heroism.”—Library Journal, on Blade of Tyshalle
“Mixes a twisty plot with intense violence and a strong narrative voice.”—Publishers Weekly, on Caine Black Knife

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Product Details

  • Series: Acts of Caine: Act of Atonement, Book 2
  • Paperback: 496 pages
  • Publisher: Del Rey; Original edition (April 3, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0345455894
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345455895
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 1 x 9.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (58 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #735,771 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Nathan on April 9, 2012
Format: Paperback
To say I'm a big fan of Matthew Stover's Acts of Caine series may be to understate the case. When I read Heroes Die and Blade of Tyshalle (the first two books in the series and the Acts of Violence and War, respectively) a dozen years or so ago, they had a profound influence both on my life and on the course my reading would take over the following decade or so. And so it was that I was extremely excited when Caine Black Knife, the first half of the Act of Atonement, was finally released in 2008. And, like a number of fans, I was entertained by that volume but also a bit disappointed. While action-packed, it often lacked the intensity, the scale, and the escalation of stakes that had helped make the first two books so gripping. Further, it featured few of the recurring characters that fans have come to love, and more, being only the first part of an Act, its cliffhanger conclusion was a bit unsatisfying -- all the more so considering the insanely epic finales of both previous books. So when Caine's Law, the conclusion to the Act of Atonement and possibly the final novel in the series, was released, I was both excited and a bit anxious.

I should have trusted Stover. This novel is more than a return to form after Caine Black Knife: it's a magnificent novel, on par with the first two books in the series.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Terrell T. Gibbs on April 16, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Seriously, I don't understand why Matthew Stover isn't famous. This is the guy who has taken sword & sorcery to the next level, combining the atmosphere and action of RE Howard, the plotting of ER Burroughs, and the subtlety and modern sensibility of Moorcock. Why is he putting food on the table writing Star Wars novelizations instead of working on the screenplay for the latest big-screen Caine epic starring somebody like Jason Statham, Vin Diesel, or Daniel Craig?

Be that as it may, Stover is still doing original work, and "Caine's Law" is yet another triumph for Stover. The "Acts of Caine" series started out strong with "Heroes Die" and has just built with every installment (although to be fair, while the first two books in the series stood very well alone, "Caine Black Knife" and "Caine's Law" feel like two halves to a single novel). Caine Black Knife dispensed with linear time, cutting back and forth between "mature" Caine and Caine at the beginning of his career. Stover is like a juggler, who keeps adding one more spinning plate, right up until the moment when he seems to lose it and they are all coming crashing to the floor--only to somehow pull of a conclusion conclusion that seems both elegant and inevitable. I think, with this novel, that he has managed to bring the story of Caine to such a conclusion--although it wouldn't surprise me if he some day comes up with a way to up the ante yet again.

Readers new to Stover's work should begin with "Heroes Die" to get the full impact of the series. Fortunately, second and long out-of-print book in the series, "Blade of Tyshalle," is now available for Kindle, (although a physical copy will cost you a pretty penny even used, unless you are lucky enough to find it new on the shelf of a bookstore as I did a few years back).
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Matthew Wolf on December 27, 2014
Format: Paperback
Stover essentially has one real Caine (the one stuck in the Buke), one outside-of-time Caine (the one dealing with Duncan) and several alterna-Caines going. As the book goes on, it's easier to figure out which is which

When Caine is splintered off from reality he seeks to make the world right, without doing too much harm. But can he change the world when gods, social police, and even the fabric of the universe may be against him?

This is nothing like the style of Strover's magnificent Heroes Die. Caine's Law and Caine Black Knife are more abstract and less about story and action. Caine still uses profanity every other word but the shock value of it has worn off by the fourth novel.

Caine's Law is very dependent on knowledge of the previous novel. I would recommend starting with Heroes Die, continue the adventure with Blade of Tyshalle and then stop. The story is neat and can be considered complete without ever getting into the Atonement of Caine, which is a very different experience anyways and probably not what you are looking for if you want more of the same.

Caine's law is hard to read casually. It's so dense every word counts and it's easy to lose what's going on. It's non linear, the story jumps all over the place. It's full of scenes that might or might not have happened. Stover pays no attention or respect to reality. This is really just a collection of short stories stitched together, most have no relation to any sort of plot. At times you may think, Isn't that character dead? Not if you unhappen reading this book.

I would avoid Caine's Law and any more books that are released in this series. This is a real disappointment because Heroes Die was so exceptional and fun!
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