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Gardens of the Moon - Steven Erikson

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Author: Steven Erikson / Format: Paperback / Date of publication: 12 February 2008 / Genre: Science Fiction / Subcategory: Science Fiction General / Publisher: Transworld Publishers Ltd / Title: Gardens of the Moon / ISBN 13: 9780553819571 / ISBN 10: 0553819571

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    3 Reviews
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      26.11.2010 18:52
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      This is a truly great start to an even better series. Stick with it, you will enjoy it.

      This is a must-have for all fantasy readers out there, but be warned. The reader is thrown in at the deep end you do need to stick with it for a while until some of the (many) plot lines and characters develop. Erikson makes no excuse of this as he openly admits in his premise (all of the more recently printed copies should have this) that you'll either stick with it (and love it) or give up after a few pages.

      This action-packed book narrates the tale of the Brigdeburners, a fearless army of the Empire, led my Whiskeyjack, and their struggle in maintaining the Empire's dominion on their conquered land.

      Erikson's world has a rich and complex mythology. The reader isn't spoon-fed any information, which makes the story really compelling, though at times it may prove frustrating as more often than not more and more questions are raised with very little answered. Moreover, the back-story of each character is usually merely hinted at best, however this by all means it's a defect of the book, rather a truly great beginning to the amazing story of the Malazan Empire.

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      20.10.2010 12:16
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      Not Great

      Gardens of the Moon is a fantasy fiction book by the Canadian author known as Steven Erikson. This is the first book in a ten book series called The Malazan Book of the Fallen. This book came out back in 1999 and really split the critics. Some raved about it saying it was a classic piece of fantasy literature while some said it was poor at best. This is one of those books that you either love or you hate.

      I have been reading fantasy fiction since I was young. I have read many different series' of books and read lots of different authors. However I had never given Steven Erikson a try. So after reading a few write ups I thought I would give the series a try and hopefully enjoy reading a really good long series of classic books. I started reading this book nine months ago, I have only just finished it!

      First of all a little about the plot. Basically the Malazan empire lies divided and there are several different factions at war with one another. The book tries to spin several different stories all at once bring them together in a dizzying way. The are warriors and wizards, dark hounds and powerful sorcerers, strange creatures and evil ones that roam the world looking to cause chaos. These may seem like a vague description of what actually happens in the book but there is a reason for this.

      Gardens of the moon is simply the most complicated mind boggling book I have ever read. I've never been a fast reader but it usually takes me less than a month to read an eight hundred page book. However this book is so complicated that it really takes time and patience to get your head round what is going on. There are so many different characters, different plots and different locations that the whole thing just gets very confusing. Several times I had to go back and read something over to try and make sense of what was going on, often I still failed.

      By the end of this book I had had enough, this is the first time I've read the first book in a series and then given up. This book is far to complicated and there is simply not enough action. There is plenty of political intrigue and there are various mind games going on between characters but I could never keep track of who people were and which side of the war they were fighting on. I usually enjoy book that get you thinking but this one felt like I was actually having to study it!

      On the plus side this book is very well written. If you have a great mind and a talent for juggling you may well enjoy this. Erikson uses very complicated language to explain something very simple, which I didn't enjoy but no doubt some people will. Even though there are several storylines all running in different directions the author does keep the story moving.

      However if you just like to curl up with a good old fashioned story this book is not for you. If you enjoy having your mind messed with and want a real challenge, then by all means give this one a try. For me though this book was one long complicated disappointment!

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        25.08.2008 17:42
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        Highly recommended for fantasy lovers

        Right this might take a while!

        This is the first book in a fantasy series currently spanning 8 books (plus 2 by another author) called "A Tale of the Malazan Book of the Fallen". It's an extremely intricate tale and has spawned numerous message boards, forums and internet chat sites dedicated to discovering all about the world described within the books.

        The story in this first book introduces us to Sergeant Whiskeyjack and the Bridgeburners-a small group of elite soldiers who work for the Malazan Empire and its' Empress. The book opens with the army of the Empire attacking the city of Pale but the action (which barely takes a breath throughout the book) mostly focuses on the free city of Darujhistan. the next target of the Empire. Within this world are scores of factions, creatures, races, magic and, most importantly, being of huge power named Ascendants. Several feature in this book and there are many, many more.

        Whilst the plot is complicated and there are many, many names of characters and places to remember, it never feels like a chore. Erikson has suceeded in crafting a vast world, full of fantastic detail unlike any fantasy series I have read. Comparisons to Robert Jordans "Wheel of Time" series are really not applicable-this is on another (better) scale entirely.

        Currently availiable for £3.99 from Amazon and clocking in at over 700 pages, this may take some time but believe me-if you enjoy this first book you'll be hooked on the mixture of magic and mayhem in a world of mass intrigue and fantastic detail.

        I cannot recommend this book highly enough. Having read the series so far I can promise you it gets better and better, pulling off some unbelievable action scenes and plot twists that you will not see coming.

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