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Comment: Very Good used copy: Some light wear to cover, spine and page edges. Very minimal writing or notations in margins. Text is clean and legible. Possible clean ex-library copy with their stickers and or stamps.
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Icefalcon's Quest Paperback – March 1, 1995


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Del Rey (March 1, 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0345470354
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345470355
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.8 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,950,712 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Hitherto, Hambly's books about Darwath, a world menaced by awakened malign sleepers and an ice age, have been classic portal fantasies, in which the emphasis is on two transplanted Californians, Gil and Rudy, who are learning to cope with a world of magic and swordplay. In the original Darwath trilogy, the menace is the Dark, hivemind beings with a taste for human flesh who wreck civilization in a matter of weeks when their brainless hominid herds die; in the singleton Mother of Winter, it was devouring fungi and the old cold mind behind them. This new book shifts emphasis to Icefalcon, the exiled plains nomad who has come to value civilization without feeling a part of it, and to the corrupt magus who kidnaps Rudy's young royal stepson for his ancestral memories. Lost in the wastes of the North is another refuge against the cold and the Dark, a Keep which has, rather literally, a mind of its own. Icefalcon has to cope with the cold and the vividly evoked claustrophobia of old dark places; he also has to comprehend the rejection of his barbarian clan. This is an intelligent fantasy thriller about choices, particularly the ones you never knew you made. --Roz Kaveney, Amazon.co.uk --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

As the armies of war leader Vair na-Chandros prepare to lay siege to the Keep of Dare, a rogue wizard kidnaps Prince Tir, intent on taking his young captive to the icy northern lands. Blaming himself for the prince's abduction, the Icefalcon?an outcast barbarian now dwelling within the Keep?sets out on a desperate rescue mission, knowing that his journey will end in a confrontation with his past. Set in the same world as Mother of Winter (LJ 9/15/96) and the Darwath trilogy (The Time of the Dark, Del Rey: Ballantine, 1994; The Walls of Air, Del Rey: Ballantine, 1983; The Armies of Daylight, Del Rey: Ballantine, 1983), this tale of honor and loyalty features one of Hambly's most memorable characters. The author's graceful style and fluid storytelling ability make this title a good choice for fantasy collections.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
5 star
57%
4 star
22%
3 star
22%
2 star
0%
1 star
0%
See all 23 customer reviews
I read and enjoyed the entire Darwath series some time ago.
Margaret Fiore
Mages worked with scientists to increase their knowledge of technology and its merging with magic to create incredible machines and powerfully advanced technology.
Dale Broadbent
It's not to say that he doesn't experience emotion or pain or fear, but rather that within his tribal upbringing, it is death to lay claim to such feelings.
Natasha Abed

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on April 22, 1998
Format: Hardcover
In Barbara Hambly newest Darwath novel, old heroes return to fight old enemies as Prince Altir is kidnapped, the Keep of Dare is threatened, and the Icefalcon embarks on a mission of rescue. It is seven years since the end of the Time of the Dark and the routed Alketch general Vair na-Chandros is trying to gain power. He thinks that Prince Altir's racial memories about the time around the Dark's first rising will provide the key to gaining this.

Unfortunately, none of the old excitement of Hambly's previous novels set in the Kingdom of Dar returns in this book. Icefalcon, an intriguing and enigmatic character in the Time of the Dark series, is presented so blandly that the reader does not share any sense of danger as he travels across the homelands from which he has been exiled, following the southern commander who has kidnapped Tir. The northern tribes, which seemed so frighteningly dangerous before, are reduced to a garbled mix of unrelated names that blithely talk about the wind and the weather.

All the characters seemed emotionally uninvolved in the conflict, except for Tir, who is swept along by events. The great secrets that he possesses both help and hinder the party, but never embroil the characters in any kind of internal struggle. There is great potential in the ideas presented in this novel but they are never fully exploited to bring us closer to the characters. In the end, I was extremely disappointed when Hambly resorted to a deux ex machina to bring help to the Icefalcon and his companions.

My advice is to read the Time of the Dark trilogy and then let the characters all live happily ever after (or not) in your own imagination.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Natasha Abed on May 31, 2002
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I bought this book because I liked the blurb on the back, and thought that it would make for interesting reading...needless to say, it's a move I absolutely do not regret. I haven't read any other book in the Darwath series, so perhaps that's the reason for my enthusiasm and fascination, but I've read Icefalcon's quest many times, and it's been enjoyable with every read.
The description of Icefalcon's emotions and understanding appear at first glance to be quite droll, but in understanding the tribal feuds and lifestyle, the reader starts to understand that the portrayal of Icefalcon is true to nature. It's not to say that he doesn't experience emotion or pain or fear, but rather that within his tribal upbringing, it is death to lay claim to such feelings. Only the strongest survive, and fear and cowardice have no place in the tribal structure.
The tribulations that Tir had to undergo, and his character's development as a result were very real and moving for me....The dark magic and evil was a potent stimulus in the book - and I was unwittingly caught up in the brutal descriptions of war and evil.
On the whole, I would definitely recommend Icefalcon's Quest... whether you buy it or borrow it, read this book and decide for yourself!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Margaret Fiore on August 15, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I read and enjoyed the entire Darwath series some time ago. Icefalcon is a rather special and intriguing character through the series, and I jumped at this book as a chance to get to know more about this inscrutable and impressive savage, who always seemed to be barely integrated into the society of Dare he has joined.

This is an excellent tale, showing Icefalcon's own internal battles between the viewpoint of his old culture vs. the new. While his old, barbarian nature tells him that there really is nothing more important than the straight truth of the weather and local tracks, his new nature, acclimating to civilization, dearly loves to hear a good story. When a well-told story - a lie - fools not only the Icefalcon, but the entire Keep of Dare, and results in the kidnap of its young King, Altir (Tir for short), the Icefalcon feels that he must atone for his gullibility by rescuing and returning Tir to his mother and his people.

At base, this book is a great story about the value of a well-told story! It is also the story of the kidnap of a young child, and his courage in the face of horrible dangers and fear. And the story of Icefalcon returning to face the people he had left many years ago, and the issues that remain unresolved.

This is perhaps more of a page-turner than even most other Barbara Hambly books. The tension stays high throughout. As always, Hambly gives us another fascinating and satisfying read.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Dale Broadbent on July 30, 2005
Format: Mass Market Paperback
3000 years ago, as the story goes, humanity enjoyed a period of prosperity. Mages worked with scientists to increase their knowledge of technology and its merging with magic to create incredible machines and powerfully advanced technology.

Then one day The Dark rose from their subterranean caverns and ravaged mankind, driving them nearly to extinction. The Keeps were built as a last refuge for mankind, and powerful mages sacrificed themselves so that their very essence could be imbued into the keeps. They became eternal prisoners, selflessly imbuing their energy to the keeps so that humanity would always have a refuge to go to in case The Dark ever returned.

What would it be like if you were one of those mages - you sacrificed yourself for the building of one of the Keeps, yet the refugees abandon you after a generation or so, leaving you alone for 3000 years?

In Icefalcon's Quest, just such a mage is encountered in a long-forgotton Keep on the road to rescue Prince Tir.

This book is riveting in its descriptions of arcane long-lost magic - newly discovered, its descriptions of the lost age of humanity and how they survived the first rising of The Dark, and how the Keeps were built and somehow survived 3000 years intact and still working. Although I always want more Darwath novels, this was a suitable resolution to a great saga.
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