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Wheel of the Infinite by [Wells, Martha]
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Wheel of the Infinite Kindle Edition

4.3 out of 5 stars 40 customer reviews

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Length: 400 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Editorial Reviews Review

With her previous novel The Death of the Necromancer, Wells established herself as a skilled fantasy world-builder with the ability to blend mystery and intrigue with plenty of buckle and swash. Here she departs from more familiar pseudohistorical European settings for the Celestial Empire, a land where life moves in eternal circles and the wishes of departed ancestors can have as much influence as the living on day-to-day life. Itinerant ex-priestess Maskelle was once the Voice of the Adversary, vessel to a spirit created by the Ancestors and given the task of punishing injustice and evil. When a false message from an interfering evil spirit led her to commit murder, Maskelle left the faith, only to return now, years later, answering the summons of the Celestial One. Someone--or something--has corrupted the great Wheel of the Infinite, distorting the sacred patterns which must be faithfully recreated at the end of each year to ensure the continual existence of the world. The only way to repair the pattern is to find the being responsible for disturbing it, and so the Adversary's Voice is needed once again, despite the past. Assisted by the swordsman Rian, a lordless bodyguard from distant Sitane, Maskelle uncovers an intricate plot whose roots were set into motion long ago--a plot responsible for the murder which forced her to leave the faith. Engaging characters and a convincing setting make this novel of ancient schemes and twisted magic an excellent and memorable read. --Charlene Brusso

From Publishers Weekly

Maskelle, the Voice of the Adversary, speaks for the power the Ancestors created to destroy evil. Since a false vision years ago, she has wandered in exile, but now the Celestial One, head of the Koshan Order of priests, has called her back to the capital city of Duvalpore. The yearly Rite of the Wheel of the Infinite, upon which the survival of the world depends, has been interrupted. An inexplicable black storm has appeared on the face of the Wheel, and if it is not removed before the Rite is completed the world could be utterly changed. With the help of an attractive foreign swordsman named Rian and a troupe of actors, Maskelle must lead the battle against the storm and the strange insurgents from another world who sent it. Maskelle and her allies face murderous water spirits, possessed corpses and cursed puppetsAand then the evil forces get to Duvalpore, and the real trouble begins. Murdered priests, magical assassins and the court favorite Lady Marada all add to the growing mystery; meanwhile, the Adversary, the source of Maskelle's power, seems strangely unreliable. Fast-paced, witty and inventive, Well's latest fantasy (after The Death of the Necromancer) is not only about saving the world; it is also about saving Maskelle from self-doubt and isolation. The vividly imagined Celestial Empire's peril is made all the more dramatic by the characters' sarcastic, reasonable conversations, and by their very human responses to inhuman dangers; there is real reading pleasure here. (June)
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Product Details

  • File Size: 843 KB
  • Print Length: 400 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Martha Wells (July 23, 2011)
  • Publication Date: July 23, 2011
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B005EC3IHG
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #81,940 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
My first experience with Martha Well's work was Death of a Necromancer. I love her ability with character development and her wry sense of humor. Having read that book I quickly sought out her other titles and consumed them (City of Bones being my favorite). Wheel of the Infinite proved to be just as engaging as her previous works and more tightly written than Necromancer. Maskelle, Rian and Ristam are all very engaging, but even the less central characters are well developed and interesting. Add to that a fascinatingly new world view, with an intriguing religion, and Ms. Wells has succeeded in creating a truly engrossing tale.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book immediately caught me, and I haven't been able to do much else until I finished it. Wheel of the Infinite is set in a world you could imagine as like Cambodia six hundred years ago, with a capital city like Ankor Wat, both an imperial and a religious capital. The temples and palaces of the city form an enormous diagram of magical power, symbolizing the true form of the world. As in other Martha Wells novels, though, magic is entirely real, and the correspondence between the layout of the city and temple rituals and the world flows in both directions--you can change the world by changing the symbols. The heroine Maskelle is an enormously powerful priestess, second in power in the religious hierarchy, whose major blunder in interpreting a prophetic dream ten years before the novel's action caused her disgrace and exile. Now the chief religious feels deeply disturbed about an upcoming, critical, ritual performed every hundred years, and has called her back to the capital. The character Maskelle is a fighter, sarcastic and with an awesome temper. She propels the action through a fast and very enjoyable read.
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Format: Hardcover
As evident from my e-mail address I am a Martha Wells fan. It began with City of Bones (which is my favorite book of hers thus far) and still hasn't ended. I found The Element of Fire and complelety loved it. Death of the Necromancer was excellent, so is it no wonder that I expected having to pull some all-nighters to read Wheel of the Infinite? That the book would become glued to my hand and I would be in a race to finish it? I still did enjoy the book but it was not what I was expecting. I realize that one of Wells strengths comes from her beautiful and complete storytelling. She is very exact and it isn't difficult to find yourself in her worlds because they are created almost seamlessly. Everything fits. However Wells is also very detailed with her characters. I think there is a balance between the setting and the characters that makes her books so believable. You need both. In Wheel I got the impression that this balance was horribly upset. The world where the book takes place was INCREDIBLY detailed. But the characters weren't. Maybe Maskelle's past was suppose to be that enigmatic but if it was it didn't work. Near the end of the book I found myself skimming paragraphs ( I thought I would never do that in a Martha Wells book) that I felt were merely useless discriptions that didn't pertain to the storyline. I was getting desperate for more of the story and desperate to learn more about the characters, and not just the major characters. I couldn't believe that some of the relationships between characters were barely explained and in some cases ignored. That is not like the Martha Wells books I know. By not explaining some of the relationships between characters there was a gap in the story that her setting couldn't cover.Read more ›
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Format: Hardcover
First, let me say that WHEEL OF THE INFINATE is not as good as THE ELEMENT OF FIRE or THE DEATH OF THE NECROMANCER but better than the CITY OF BONES. In WHEEL, Ms. Wells has created a whole new world fully realized, with patches of Earth cultures (I recognized India among others) but in a new stew...and Ms Wells bubbles it for all she's worth! The plot line follows a more conventional "prevent the end of life as we know it" plot line than her better books. This reduces the ability of her characters to relax and just be people (as opposed to heros and heroines) for brief moments. She has used the devise of the traveling players before but integrated them into the action more this time. The relationship between Maskelle, the troubled Voice of the Adversery, and Rian, the very skilled but outlawed bodyguard is strong and unusual: she is considerably older but maybe not wiser. There are lots of plot twists and turns, a few surprises and a few not-surprises that were supposed to be. The last quarter of the book got just a bit murky but recovered with a sharp ending. This isn't Martha Wells' best book but as few other writers come close, I wouldn't let that worry me.
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Format: Hardcover
In WHEEL OF THE INFINITE, Martha Wells has created a fascinating world and belief structure. Each year, the priests and 'voices' must create a microcosm of the world. The connection between the 'wheel' and the world is causal. If they are unable to recreate the world, chaos may result. Maskelle, voice of the Adversary, has lost faith in herself at the same time as the wheel is threatened by a powerful over-writing. Unless Maskelle can overcome her doubts, the world may be destroyed.
Maskelle is an intriguing protagonist. Her doubts are understandable as she killed her husband in response to a false prophecy. For the most part, however, the other characters lack the dimensions shown by Maskelle. The motivation of Maskelle's love interest, in particular, is unclear.
Still, Wells' writing moves the story along with a good mix of adventure, magic, and a world you'll want to return to. ....
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