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The Judging Eye: One (Aspect-Emperor) Paperback – Bargain Price, March 30, 2010
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From Publishers Weekly
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Top Customer Reviews
I do not feel the need to air them, or give this book anything less than five stars because of them. In a genre filled to the brim, no, overflowing with cardboard supermen and superwomen who can defeat every foe and master every enemy, Bakker finally puts real people into a fantasy world. People who can be broken by the immensity of the events around them, people who were once large that can become small and weak, people who are weak becoming strong. People who allow their foibles to make them into monsters to those around them. People who...well, just have foibles at all, yet remain heroes, and not twisted villains.
There is moral ambiguity here, amongst the heroes and the neutral forces, and even some of the villains. There is a chance for the reader to doubt the indomitable quest of the 'good guys' as being something less than what it is portrayed as, we are allowed to make our own choices about who we root for and who we hate (to a degree at least).
There are so many bestsellers out there full of escapist fantasy, full of characters who never change and can never be beaten, and it is nice to see that at least some writers are out there who are willing to take the chance that their readers might not want everything neatly laid out for them.
Bravo Bakker, keep it up. You're verbose and sometimes over-complex, but I'll take poor, old, beaten down Akka, over some of those other sword-wielding super-men(and women) any day.
Bakker's world is a dark, violent, lusty place that is as ancient as it is fascinating. Too many inferior works of fantasy get bogged down in exposition when relating their unique histories, and to be sure it can be quite daunting to the reader trying to keep the various sects, alliances, armies, and peoples straight. You will find yourself flipping back to the helpful appendices in vain efforts to keep up to speed - just who is the Consult? What are Sranc? How are the Mandate Schools different from . . . you get the picture.
"The Judging Eye" is the first volume in a new trilogy - the Aspect-Emperor trilogy - that kicks off twenty years after Anasurimbor Kellhus took dominion over the world and was publicly rejected by everyone's favorite tubby wizard, Drusas Achamaian. Kellhus is less a character in this book as a figure of awe, reverence and terror, depending on your perspective. Kellhus is marshalling his peoples - united from all corners of the world - for a tremendous march north. Picture Alexander the Great heading out to conquer Persia, but instead of bringing a relatively small contingent of Macedonians along with a handful of allies, imagine if he also brought along armies from every corner of Europe, up to and including Viking raiders from the north. And their families.Read more ›
Maybe that's too harsh, but I definitely got tired of reading about every single little thing from everyone's perspective.
Also, if you've read it, there is an incident with the youngest prince where he gets away with something big and nobody has a guess. The unlikeliness of it, plus the clues (a small child can't reach very high up) which would add up to the size of the culprit, plus the highly analytical people there who would figure it out quickly. That part seemed very out of place for Scott's writing. Rushed, even.
The running battle near the end is also goofy compared to earlier writings. Before, the author wrote more realistically with fighting, that one man would have trouble against two or more, except our local superman :)
This particular scene has anyone with any backstory (like a horror movie, you can pick out who lives and dies early on) able to take down 20 opponents with no problem. Too far into hollywood's "I'll wait my turn for you to kick my butt" bad guys.
Anyway, a good story by far, but it feels like the author is diverging from his earlier writing style. The first 3 books seem more subtle with coincidence playing a hand, which makes sense. This book seems to wave the plot in your face repeatedly and everything working out perfect for some and hollywood movie like for others.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Bakker has done it again. I loved the Prince of Nothing trilogy, and although this has a slightly different tone, it feels a natural extension of what came before. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Amazon Customer
This is the fourth book in a series--or rather, the first book of the second trilogy in a trilogy of trilogies. Read morePublished 14 months ago by Amanda
Great book, enjoyed this authors world and characters. Recommend it.Published 15 months ago by Cali_surf
It takes a little to get into, but when you do, it's all-encompassing.Published 22 months ago by dan
Love his writing style, so rich. Hooked me from the start and I couldn't put it down. Highly recommend this author.Published 23 months ago by Kimberly