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Children of the Serpent Gate: Book 3 of The Tears of Artamon Mass Market Paperback – May 30, 2006

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Children of the Serpent Gate: Book 3 of The Tears of Artamon + Prisoner of the Iron Tower: Book Two of The Tears of Artamon + Lord of Snow and Shadows: Book One of The Tears of Artamon
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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. At the start of the rousing conclusion to Ash's fantasy trilogy (after 2004's Prisoner of the Iron Tower), King Enguerrand of Francia has the five Tears of Artamon, the magical jewels that give their possessor claim to Novaya Rossiya. This means a crisis for Novaya Rossiya's Emperor Eugene, particularly since the Francians have kidnapped his chief magus, Kaspar Linnaius, and are going to burn him at the stake. Eugene makes an alliance of convenience with Gavril Nagarian, Lord Drakhaon of Azhkendir, who goes to Kaspar's rescue. Meanwhile, Gavril's prematurely aged lover, Kiukiu, must travel just as far in the opposite direction to find a cure; Eugene's pregnant empress, Astasia, runs away to Francia; and Eugene's daughter, Karila, has to go into hiding from would-be usurpers. The large cast may be hard to follow for new readers, but is uniformly well-developed and convincing, as is the whole world of the trilogy, with its vivid 18th-century European flavor and fallen angels who evoke Paradise Lost. Lovers of big, complex fantasy sagas (think Robert Jordan or George R.R. Martin) will be well pleased.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From Booklist

Gavril Nagarian's Drakhaoul daemon, Khezef, has lived among humans long enough to be taking on human characteristics. But Khezef is no longer the only daemon-dragon roaming the world. Four other Drakhaoul are free and plotting to gain the Tears of Artamon, which together will open the Serpent Gate and free the Drakhaoul prince Nagar from the Realm of Shadows. Then they will destroy the world. Meanwhile, the royal children of New Rossiya's five princedoms are growing sick and weak, and the Spirit Singer Kiukiu dreams of other, terrified children trapped in the Realm of Shadows. The connections between the shadow children, the royal children, and the Drakhaoul aren't clear to Kiukiu, but she knows that helping them all is critical. Finally, Kiukiu may have to discover deep magic within to heal the seemingly insurmountable evils threatening her world. Themes of redemptive transformation, a labyrinthine plot, and the spectacular Drakhaoul memorably conclude the Tears of Artamon trilogy, begun in Lord of Snow and Shadows (2003) and continued in Prisoner of the Iron Tower (2004). Paula Luedtke
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
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Product Details

  • Series: The Tears of Artamon (Book 3)
  • Mass Market Paperback: 624 pages
  • Publisher: Spectra; Reprint edition (May 30, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0553586238
  • ISBN-13: 978-0553586237
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1.1 x 6.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #614,715 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

'Thursday's Child has Far to Go.' Sarah was born in Bath on a Thursday and she likes to think that means there's a lot more mileage in her yet, particularly when it comes to her first love, writing.

After she read 'The Lord of the Rings' when she was twelve, she started writing her own fantasy novels but chose to study music at New Hall (now Murray Edwards College), Cambridge. She's always enjoyed working with young people, so she trained as a teacher, teaching music for many years.

Sarah's first novel 'Moths to a Flame' came out in 1995 from Orion; seven other fantasy novels, including the 'Tears of Artamon' trilogy, and various short stories for 'Interzone' have followed. She also reviews manga and anime - another passion - for various online magazines.

Sarah's new novel 'The Flood Dragon's Sacrifice' is a fantasy set in an alternate medieval Japan.Her dream? To see one of her stories reinterpreted as manga or anime...

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Eric D. Honaker on January 11, 2006
Format: Hardcover
I thought that this book was an excellent conclusion to the series. In particular, I liked Ash's use of Gavril, Eugene, and Enguerrand. Gavril and his demon continue to pull at one another, and to affect one another's minds. In the end, both are changed, but neither in the standard fantasy cliche way. Eugene's frustrating status as a likeable antagonist matures into true heroism. I don't want to give away Enguerrand's role, but I was very pleased with the way Ms. Ash dealt with the Heavenly Warriors and their place in the struggle.

In this book, and Prisoner of the Iron Tower, I was a little disappointed that there was not more involvement of Clan Arkhel. I felt like the first book of the series really suggested that the clan was going to play a major part (beyond the spirit singers' powers) in the unfolding events, but that never really happened. I don't think the story as it stands suffers from this, but it'd be nice if we hadn't be teased.

I definitely recommend this series to anyone who is interested in a slightly off-base look at traditional fantasy, vampire myths, or demons.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
This is the third and final volume of the Tears of Artamon (after Lord of Snow and Shadows and Prisoner of the Ironsea Tower).

After being set free by Eugene on Ty Nagar, new daemons are now looking for their hosts among the descendants of Artamon. Their aim is to open the Serpent Gate with the sacrifice of innocent children, to let their lord Nagazdiel invade the World. Realizing everything is getting out of his hands, Eugene has no choice but to ask Gavril for help: their Drakhaouls must unite against their brothers' dire intentions.

At the same time, pious Enguerrand of Francia has stolen the rubies and is claiming now the throne of New Rossiya. He and his Guerriers have launched an inquisition against all forms of magic, and are raiding Smarna and Tielen in search of heretics, to burn them at the stake.

And so Kaspar Linnaius is captured. But Kiukiu needs the Magus's skills to restore her. Indeed, she has stayed too long in the Ways Beyond trying to help the wraith-children and has lost almost all her life force. She is now as frail and fragile as an old woman and will die soon, and mostly she doesn't want Gavril to see her like that.

Meanwhile Astasia, who has fled to Francia with her brother Andrei, is starting to regret her move.

Again, I missed the immersion I experienced in the first volume. There are many characters and twice as many plot lines, some of which are left dangling at the end of the series (if the character has not been killed yet), and the perpetual chase goes on. However, I very much enjoyed seeing Gavril and Khezef's relationship deepen, and witnessing Eugene's evolution over time, surprisingly becoming more human with the daemon in him.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By SD on October 13, 2005
Format: Hardcover
In the last installment of Sarah Ash's "Tears of Artamon" trilogy all those pesky loose ends involving Gavril, Eugene, Karila, Kiukiu and our many other friends come to a close. The question regarding the fate of New Rossiya is answered...sort of. And our hunger to know our friends' fates is sated...in a way.

The first two books of this series had a pleasing pace and structure to them, but this last book feels rushed, as if Mrs. Ash was told three-quarters of the way through her writing that her deadline was approaching. The reader at times will believe there are portions of the book best left out entirely, bearing no relevence to the grand scheme of things until the end. Do we really need multiple pages to be introduced to Aude's kitten? Certain episodes that could have been introduced in a few sentences instead take up space best left to exciting action. The time jumps through the chapters--indicated by double spaced lines--in the same character's point of view seem awkward and jilted, greatly hampering the flow of the novel. Then, suddenly the reader is hurled through the last fifty pages or so of the book, flung through so much action and "loose thread tying" the reader is not satisfied. I found myself at the last page asking, "That's it? Where's the rest?"

So, I give this book four stars. Otherwise, faithful readers of Mrs. Ash's trilogy will find this final installment full of action, romance, and strange creatures winging through the night air.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By P. J. Messersmith on March 27, 2006
Format: Hardcover
I have to say, I am sad it's over. Sarah Ash has given me many hours of good reading and I cherished them all. This book I found a little different than the previous two in that things were moving along at a standard pace and the next thing you know; bam, bam, bam, it's over. It seemed like she just decided it was time to finish it, so she did. Don't get me wrong I loved it, but I felt like she left a few things out. Sarah hasn't really kept any secrets in the books and when she did they were eventually revealed. Not the case with this book unfortunately. Perhaps I missed it, but I want to know what happened with Kaspar Linnaius. Heck, I'd like to see a book about nothing but him. I hope Sarah continues to write quality material like she has, if she does..... I'll read em'. I would suggest putting an extra fifty pages in to finish the book and give us the imagery and story we love and honestly for reading the two previous books...deserve.
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