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Bauchelain and Korbal Broach: Three Short Novels of the Malazan Empire, Volume One (Malazan Empire Novels) Paperback – September 15, 2009
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About the Author
Steven Erikson is an archaeologist and anthropologist and a graduate of the Iowa Writers' Workshop. His Malazan Book of the Fallen series, including The Crippled God, Dust of Dreams, Toll the Hounds and Reaper's Gale, have met with widespread international acclaim and established him as a major voice in the world of fantasy fiction. The first book in the series, Gardens of the Moon, was shortlisted for a World Fantasy Award. The second novel, Deadhouse Gates, was voted one of the ten best fantasy novels of 2000 by SF Site. He lives in Canada.
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Top Customer Reviews
Steven Erikson's Bauchelain and Korbal Broach novellas are at once everything you'd expect and nothing at all like what you think you're getting. In Memories of Ice, we're briefly introduced to the enigmatic Bauchelain and the mildly sociopathic Korbal Broach. One is tall and suave; one is short and kinda insane. Both are incredibly powerful. What we get in Memories of Ice is never more than a taste, and it was obvious there was far more under the surface. I came to this collection expecting to have the cloth pulled back. I wanted to see figure out who these people were, and I wanted to see what they got up to when they weren't messing with caravan guards. The second is satisfied in spades. The first...not so much.
Erikson's style here is fairly different from his more epic works. The novellas are, by necessity, far more focused than their gargantuan brethren, and Erikson proves himself more than capable at telling a concise story. In addition, his talent for easily understood, yet chaotic, action is present in full force, abetted by his usual grasp of atmosphere.
"'Every child should know terror, and are not my little ones terrible?'"
Though humor has always been a part of the Malazan books, it's never played nearly as central a role as it does here. In addition, while the jokes in Midnight Tides, etc, are almost wholly dependent on clever phrasing and wording, here Erikson takes a far more slapstick approach. If you're easily offended, you might want to stay well clear. Erikson knows what he wants to convey, and he spares no punches when doing so. You'll laugh, but you also just might feel the tiniest bit queasy as well.Read more ›
It tells the story of how Emancipor is hired by the duo of necromancers (Blood Follows), an adventure during their sea voyage (The Lees of Laughter's End), and an adventure in the city of Quaint (The Healthy Dead). There is so much detail possible from more of the back story, or even the sea voyage, it's easy to see why this collection is called "Volume 1". We should all hope that more works are in progress.
The first story in this collection is very very good. The character building is full of mystery and suspense. The whole lead up of how the characters meet, the things that are going on in the city and the way it ended was pleasantly entertaining. Upon finishing it, I was thinking that these two "evil" characters were pretty cool.
But then I read the next two stories and was extremely disappointed in what the characters became. Gone was the sense of mystery, the eerie deeds, and the thought out plot and action. All of a sudden, the two characters kinda became like a creepy Laurel and Hardy. The situations become outlandish and vaudevillian (one on a boat, the other where a whole city goes crazy). These stories are so out there and silly, that they don't even seem like they fit in the Malazan world I know from the primary books of the series.
In the end, it's part of the series (a prequel of sorts) and I own it. By the way, Night of Knives is much better story. Read that one.
If you love the Malazan series then buy this. If not, or you don't know what that is, then pass on this.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.5 stars. If you like caustic macabre humor you'll enjoy this series. Best of the lot to date.Published 15 days ago by Scott Hitchcock
Yet another amazing set of tales from Erikson. This author is truly capable of getting your gears turning while delivering comedy, tragedy and triumph as I have never seen them put... Read morePublished 7 months ago by Amazon Customer
Love these freaky characters! Love the writing style! Love Erikson! What else can I say?Published 8 months ago by Michael K. Brown
It was a nice change of pace from the regular Malazan fare, and funny in parts. These two characters work best as a backdrop for a story involving other characters.Published 23 months ago by Stephen P. Boulet Jr.
I enjoyed seeing behind the mystery of Bauchelain and Korbal. A nice addition to my collection. A very enjoyable world.Published on February 13, 2014 by Jack A Dalehite