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Forge of Darkness (The Kharkanas Trilogy) Paperback – September 16, 2014
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The creator of the vast and vastly popular Malazan Book of the Fallen now launches a trilogy intended to provide the background for the original 10-volume epic. In Kurald Galain, the Warren of Darkness, Mother Dark herself is supposed to reign and, incidentally, keep all the various magical forces at least minimally under control. But she has married a foreigner, Lord Draconus--always a questionable move when there’s a rival for her hand. In this case, the rival is the hero of the people, Vatha Urusander, and this rivalry is generating tension and intrigues on an alarming scale. Not the least alarmed are the three Sons of Darkness, who wonder whether their heritage, Purake Hold, will survive the time of troubles. Readers who have survived the original saga (more than a few) will certainly jump into this one, and new readers may besiege the libraries because of Erikson’s epic’s resemblance to George R. R. Martin’s best-selling Game of Thrones. --Roland Green --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
"Readers may besiege the libraries because of Erikson’s epic’s resemblance to George R. R. Martin’s bestselling Game of Thrones." ―Booklist
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Top customer reviews
I like realism in fantasy, and really enjoyed the earlier malazan stories, but this one left me flat and joyless. That may be your cup to tea, but its worth noting for those of you who want something more upbeat.
I will probably finish the other two books in this series, primarily because it's basically the origin story for a lot of awesome things that are not fully explained in the original Malazan story (Warrens, Azath, Mother Dark, dragons and freaking Anomander Rake! to name a few), and I expect to get more satisfaction in the middle and last part of this (insane) story arc, particularly as it relates to the Sons of Darkness and Draconis, which are probably the most interesting characters to me.
Things that drove me crazy: A) following like 19 simultaneous plotlines/character groups (yeah, I know, that's what Erikson does, but in this book I really got tired of it because a lot of the characters just became extra tedious), and having to constantly refer to the dramatis personae to figure out who was who B) Not enough action from the "awesome" characters (trying not to spoil here) C) Incredibly dark (yeah, I know, that's what Erikson does), with a massive buildup of anticipation and essentially no payoff
I really, really wanted more action from the Sons of Darkness, and I anticipate the remaining two books in this trilogy will deliver in that regard.
That said, this is one dark story. I felt like I'd started watching the Star Wars trilogy with The Empire Strikes Back, with no hope, no light at the end, and definitely no redemption. I have some hope that Erikson will bring the story back around, but either way I'm certain to buy the next two installments. Highly recommended for any reader of complex fantasy, but especially for anyone who's read the Malazan series at least once through.
Strongest point: depiction of civil war - it's deeply depressing to see people making all sorts of bad choices and committing horrible crimes just because they think that's the only way left, or because they don't have enough information to make better decision - they react on situations developing too fast to allow them stop and think for a moment, act based on hearsay and prejudices they have... How many times in human history did we see it, and how many times will we see it yet? And is there a way how to prevent it repeating? And would I be better being in the same situation? How gladly I would say yes - but I'm not so sure about myself.
Weakest point: I'm accustomed to Steven's introspection and philosophizing of his heroes, and for most parts, I enjoy it; but here I sometimes felt I've been more told than shown what the people felt, and the tempo was sometimes slowed down considerably.