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Shadow of a Dark Queen (The Serpentwar Saga, Book 1) Mass Market Paperback – December 28, 2010

4.3 out of 5 stars 118 customer reviews
Book 1 of 4 in the Serpentwar Saga Series

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

A dark and alien peril casts an lengthening shadow over Midkemia as another Riftworld saga begins almost a generation after the events in The King's Buccaneer . Erik von Darkmoor, bastard son of the local baron, flees to the city of Krondor after accidentally killing his legitimate and sadistic half-brother. Condemned to death, Eric and his childhood friend, Rupert (Roo) Avery, are provisionally spared to serve in a desperate mission against the reptilian Pantathians, who plan to conquer Midkemia and bring back their goddess, Alma-Lodaka, one of the ancient Dragon Lords. The boys undergo brutal training and join others of their kind under the half-elf Calis, known as the Eagle of Krondor, in a bid to pass as mercenaries in the continent of Novindus, current battle center for the Pantathians and their reluctant allies, the also-reptilian Saaur. A sensitive coming-of-age tale in which brutality and camaraderie are equally present, Feist's newest saga has a freshness of vision that suggests it will avoid the staleness that often eats away at multivolume epics. Author tour.
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

From Library Journal

In the first volume of the "Serpent War Saga," the best-selling author of the "Riftwar Saga" introduces a new twist to an old setting. The planets Kelewan and Midkemia, central to the Riftwar novels, are home to a pair of unlikely heroes who must fight an evil race of serpents.
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
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Product Details

  • Series: Serpentwar Saga (Book 1)
  • Mass Market Paperback: 497 pages
  • Publisher: EOS (December 28, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0380720868
  • ISBN-13: 978-0380720866
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1.1 x 6.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (118 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #116,388 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By William Briggs on August 1, 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Well, I picked up my first Feist novel about 10 years ago, and have enjoyed his writing ever since. The Serpentwar Saga is set perhaps 50 years after the end of the Riftwar. If you have not already read Feist's riftwar saga, then I suggest you do so before picking up this book. Also, you should read Prince of the Blood and The King's Buccaneer, because these two "in between" books chronicle the events that lead up to the "Serpentwar".
In general, Feist's writing is clear and entertaining. These books rarely bog down, and are generally a quick read. There is nothing particularly new or genre-altering in Feist's work, but his novels are quite a bit of fun all the same.
I would wholeheartedly recommend the Serpentwar saga to anyone who has already read the Riftwar books and is looking for more. These books won't change your life, but you'll certainly have a great time reading them.
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A Kid's Review on November 29, 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
In the Shadow of a Dark Queen is a thrilling book by Raymond E. Feist. In it a boy becomes a man, a old war is reinvestigated, and an evil older then time itself reappears. The book is suspenseful, and keeps readers on the end of their seats. I give it a five star rating. I thought that it was a wonderful example of sci-fi fantasy. It is comparable with Tolkiens Lord of the Rings. It delighted me and sort of made me feel like I was in the story. Feists books don't give a lot of character depth, but they are fun to read and make you want to be one of the characters. The storyline will not work if you do not read Magician 1&2, Silverthorn, A Darkness at Sethanon, Prince of the Blood, and The Kings Buccaneer. It is overall a wonderful book
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
Shadow of a Dark Queen is the newest adventure set on the world of Midkemia. Set approximately twenty five years after the last book, this novel introduces the reader to an all new cast of characters.

The story evolves around young Erik von Darkmoor and Rupert "Roo" Avery. Gone are the great heroes from earlier novels, such as Arutha, Pug, Lyam, Borric, and Jimmy the Hand. While a few members of the original cast have brief appearances, the story is largely comprised of all new characters and takes place in the land introduced in King's Buccaneer, Novindus.

Unlike previous Feist novels, inside we find characters who are in the gray area between good and evil. The characters appear to have been written to be more identifiable by the reader, but I think I related more to the original cast more. Most of the new characters are basically good, but not in the same vein as Arutha conDoin and Mara of the Acoma. Where Mara and Arutha were fighting for the Kingdom and the Empire, Erik and Roo fight for their lives and their families. Expect a different feel from this new series than you got from previous works.

Overall, the story was very good, only getting bad marks for being a tad on the technical side. If you are a military buff, you will thoroughly enjoy this book, as will most readers who have liked Feist's earlier books.
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By A Customer on December 31, 1997
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Once again, Raymond Feist has done what few fantasy authors can do well, bring a complex world to life. Eric von Darkmoor and Rupert Avery pick up the gauntlet that was laid down by Pug and Tomas after the RiftWar. S.O.A.D.Q. is a masterpiece in a series of unbelievable books. I haven't been so engrossed since a Darkness at Sethanon. The Panthain serpent priest are back causing trouble for the kingdom. A group of "Desperate " men are assembled to infiltrate the Emerald Queen's army and find out the advancing armies weaknesses. The story unravels as Calis (Tomas' son) leads a group into the midst of an enemy army. The characters are in depth and believable, far from the normal cookie cutter characters of many other series. This book is filled with adventures and battles, as well as Feist trademark humor. It is a must read for any fantasy fan.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
I am a very big fan of Raymond Feist, but not really of this series. I have read all of the books up to the Darkwar saga and have always found them good reads and full of interesting characters.

This Serpentwar Saga does not have the same spark that his other sagas have had. I found that the characters are less than interesting, even ones that I have liked in past books and the books are just hard to get through. I also found that these books are full of young teenage rapes and really graphic details on murder of children etc... I don't remember this so much in his other stories. I understand that in Sci-Fi/Fantasy books things can get a little gory etc... but this time his books seem to be full of things that made me very uncomfortable and seemed completely unnecessary. I think in his other books he was able to show the horrors of war and the horrors of what people can become and/or do etc... without raping every teenage girl in the book and graphically describing children being thrown from cliffs etc...

I just really felt that this series was not up to snuff when it comes to books written by Feist. I would actually have to say that this is the first time I would recommend a parent think twice before they allow children to read this series.

All in all, this series to me is just filler. The books are not as good as the books that came before and are not as good as the books that have came after. You should read them for continuity, but don't expect too much.
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