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Comment: Used in Worn Condition. No CD or Access Code. Ex-library books. Some Markings. Small tears and wear on corners and edges
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The Seer King Mass Market Paperback – February 1, 1998

3.4 out of 5 stars 32 customer reviews
Book 1 of 3 in the Seer King Trilogy Series

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Editorial Reviews

From Kirkus Reviews

Military sword and sorcery, from the co-author of Kingdoms of the Night (with Allan Cole, 1995, etc.) The former kingdom of Numantia is governed by an effete oligarchy known as the Rule of Ten. As a young, untried cavalry officer, narrator Damastes is sent with his troop to escort a diplomatic mission led by the seer (magician) Tenedos into a bandit-infested border country of Kait. But opposed by Kait's greedy boss--Baber Fergana and his sorcerer, Irshad, not to mention by a powerful demon called Thak and his strangler-assassin Tovieti cult--Tenedos and Damastes barely escape with a handful of survivors. Soon, however, Thak moves into the Numantian capital, Nicias, followed rapidly by the Tovieti with their yellow silk strangling cords, while another enemy, the sorcerer Chardin Sher, brews up spells more powerful than those of Tenedos. Despite all this, the Rule of Ten refuse to take action, and Nicias is engulfed by civil war. Tenedos and Damastes have no choice but to seize control of Numantia, then face further military and sorcerous challenges before Tenedos openly declares himself emperor. A fantasy sex- and violence-fest, courtesy of Bunch's sure grasp of military history and organization, gory battles interspersed with interludes of graphic sex, and dialogue peppered with incongruous modern expletives. The text, while complete in itself, seems to promise at least one sequel. -- Copyright ©1996, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

Slam-bang excitement, lusty action and military magic...fast-paced and ferocious Julian May Rich and convincing ... will leave you eagerly awaiting the next instalment SFX --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 560 pages
  • Publisher: Aspect; Warner Books ed. edition (February 1, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0446605247
  • ISBN-13: 978-0446605243
  • Product Dimensions: 5 x 1.2 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,489,956 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Peter A. Kimball on May 15, 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This is the opening volume of a war-with-swords-and-magic trilogy, taking place in a somewhat stripped-down world with Roman-empire military technology and also magic and demons.
Let me take care of the sex scenes issue up front. An earlier reviewer was right on the mark when he compared them to "Letters to Penthouse", except, to be precise, they're more like "Letters to Penthouse Variations" in their systematic kinkiness. And they're not there to develop the character or the plot, either. You go along for 50 pages of plot, and then you get a ten page kinky sex scene, sort of like beer commercials in the middle of a football game. I've never seen anything quite like it. It's weird. Well, you can take that as a plus or a minus, it's up to you.
Basically this trilogy is all about war, civil and otherwise. The protagonist, Damastes a Cimabue, is discovered in prison at the beginning of Volume I, expecting to die, penning his reflections on the rise and fall of his career as the friend, tool, and dupe of Tenedos, mage-emperor of Numantia. (Don't get too discouraged, though, that isn't really how the trilogy ends.)
Numantia is an empire which has no emperor, is ruled by a committee, and is unraveling into its component kingdoms. Or so it is when Damastes encounters the Seer (really mage) Tenedos, who has some big ideas but no batallions. Since the book is called "The Seer King", I don't think I'm giving anyway any deep secrets by telling you that through his tactical and strategic abilities Damastes is able to help Tenedos realize some or all of these ideas.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
Let's tackle this head on: Very graphic sex and fantasy is definitely not your standard bread-and-butter combination. Should you have problem with the former, you don't need to read on & simply forget this book (series) - because there's plenty of it, treading a very fine line between feeling weirdly out of place and actually cutting the edge.
However, if you don't mind, you will be treated to a very deftly written yarn - a young military officer and an equally young wizard that set out to find their destiny, face uncountable dangers & conquer a realm. Not a very innovative plotline - but always very welcome, especially if well written. Chris Bunch does a really neat job here; very down-to- earth, fast-paced, nitty-gritty, blood&sweat&tears, no-frills action garnished with very solid military lore. (I think it's the earthiness of this book that actually let's the sex fit in without feeling too awkward). Bunch succeeds in instilling his protagonists with an unerring sense of urgency, especially Tenedos, on their quest to glory, while far on the horizon dark clouds start to build up (BTW, not a very smooth trick to give THAT away in the prologue of the book). Definitely worth a try ! (i.e. a very solid 4 stars effort).
Unfortunately, that's the good news. If Bunch had slapped on another 150, 200 (tops) pages to tie down all the loose ends, he would have created a very nifty & tight epos. As is, the series starts to nosedive in subsequent volumes. Volume 2 (The Demon King) is basically Napoleon's Russia disaster revisited, with the two main protagonists going jaded or plain nuts and the graphic sex now actually feeling completely out of place. Emotionally a real downer of a book with a downer-ending. Still, by sheer fascinating grimness, close to 3 stars.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Overall, I liked the plot and way the story unfolded. However, I could have done without the graphic sex. I felt he spent too much time on sex and not enough time on each event. Sure, it was written as a memoir, but if I want to read about sex in such detail, I would buy an x-rated novel.
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I have owned the full series for a number of years in paperback and it is one of those I reread almost yearly because of the quality of writing and story. However the publishers of the Kindle edition have not bothered to proofread properly. Names are mixed up and the spelling is atrocious. This really needs to be updated. This goes for the full series. If you want to read this go for the paperback for now until this is fixed.
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This book is a tough one to rate. Had I rated it at the halfway point I would have said 4 to 4.5 stars, however I found myself droning through the last 20% of the book just wanting it to be over.

Editing errors: they are numerous and seem to increase in frequency towards the end of the book. Missing end quotation marks are the most prevalent and in my opinion don't overly detract from the book.

This book is written as a memoir and while it's not the best attempt at such it's not the worst either. Without reading the 2nd and 3rd book it's hard to say if the scope is too broad and if the allusions brought up in this book are covered.

One of this books weakest components is the main character and love. Some have spoken about the awkwardness of the sex in this book; it's not so much that it is misplaced, but that the main characters, as well as others, entire relationship(s) with the love of his life is nothing more than sex. In all honesty it may be the flattest romance to be ever written, below those of even cheap porn. This really hinders the tale and absolutely becomes meaningless to the story, making the sex scenes feel out of place. Remove the relationships from the story and the entire story would change little. That's telling.

The book is gritty and does not avoid taboo. Be aware nobody is safe in this book where as in the real world babes die along parents and animals are no safer than the owners in war. The novel also closely mimics a lot of our world and the politics will feel very familiar, more so than they would have when the book was written: pre 9/11.
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