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Stealers' Sky (Thieves' World 12) Mass Market Paperback – December 1, 1989
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What are some of the main things? Well, the Beysib are now negotiating with their country of origin and whatever happened there; the Rankan Empire appears to be dissolving and Sanctuary's tenuous connection to it is ever frailer; Sanctuary itself continues to improve in terms of the lifestyles and conditions of its people much to everyone's surprises; and even the magic users and gods are engaged in trying to figure out what to do with the new Sanctuary.
I think the thing that most jumped out at me is the red logo on the front cover that proclaims: "The Triumphant Conclusion", yet, there was no conclusion of any kind in this book. Nothing was really finished. Did Tempus come back, no! Are the Stepson and Hell Hounds still around, no. What about Hakeim? He is not even referred to in the book until the last little bit - which was clearly a quick afterthought thrown in to provide an answer to what happened to one of the most enduring characters in all twelve books.
The feeling the book gave me was that the series is stopping because no one wants to keep it going. I am not sure what happened with Robert Asprin and Lynn abbey at this time - maybe they simply ran out of time and interest in keeping this going? Maybe the normal contributors to these anthologies had had enough and the editors could not find new authors to jump in? Maybe the series sales have lagged so badly that the publisher stopped supporting it? I do not know, but I do know that this last volume promises much and delivers little, which is why I am giving it only three stars.
Saying that, the writing in this one was frankly mediocre at best, and the story line was under huge stress as it seemed like they were just putting this one out because it was time to put another book out. Thieves world is a GREAT series but one that needs to creative and varying influences of authors who are willing to really pull the reader into the world. I liked this book, but frankly it will sit on my shelf as a valued addition to my collection, but it will be a boring day indeed when I remove to read it again.
ROBERT LYNN ASPRIN
ANDREW J. OFFUTT
In this dramatic final adventure, clouds of war gather over Sanctuary once again. And as warriors prepare for battle, thieves eagerly await a great dust storm to envelop the city. For then they can silently strike, slipping in and out of the raging currents of the storm...