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Assail: A Novel of the Malazan Empire [Format Kindle]

Ian C Esslemont

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Descriptions du produit

Présentation de l'éditeur

Tens of thousands of years of ice is melting, and the land of Assail, long a byword for menace and inaccessibility, is at last yielding its secrets. Tales of gold discovered in the region’s north circulate in every waterfront dive and sailor’s tavern and now adventurers and fortune-seekers have set sail in search of riches. And all they have to guide them are legends and garbled tales of the dangers that lie in wait - hostile coasts, fields of ice, impassable barriers and strange, terrifying creatures. But all accounts concur that the people of the north meet all trespassers with the sword - and should you make it, beyond are rumoured to lurk Elder monsters out of history’s very beginnings.


Into this turmoil ventures the mercenary company, the Crimson Guard. Not drawn by contract, but by the promise of answers: answers that Shimmer, second in command, feels should not be sought. Also heading north, as part of an uneasy alliance of Malazan fortune-hunters and Letherii soldiery, comes the bard Fisher kel Tath. With him is a Tiste Andii who was found washed ashore and cannot remember his past and yet commands far more power than he really should. It is also rumoured that a warrior, bearer of a sword that slays gods and who once fought for the Malazans, is also journeying that way. But far to the south, a woman patiently guards the shore. She awaits both allies and enemies. She is Silverfox, newly incarnate Summoner of the undying army of the T’lan Imass, and she will do anything to stop the renewal of an ages-old crusade that could lay waste to the entire continent and beyond. Casting light on mysteries spanning the Malazan empire, and offering a glimpse of the storied and epic history that shaped it, Assail brings the epic story of the Empire of Malaz to a thrilling close.

Biographie de l'auteur

IAN CAMERON ESSLEMONT was born in 1962 in Winnipeg, Canada. He has a degree in Creative Writing, studied and worked as an archaeologist, travelled extensively in South East Asia, and lived in Thailand and Japan for several years. He now lives in Fairbanks, Alaska, with his wife and children. His novels Night of Knives, Return of the Crimson Guard, Stonewielder, Orb Sceptre Throne and Blood and Bone are all set in the fantasy world of Malaz that he co-created with Steven Erikson.

Détails sur le produit

  • Format : Format Kindle
  • Taille du fichier : 2142 KB
  • Nombre de pages de l'édition imprimée : 542 pages
  • Editeur : Transworld Digital (14 août 2014)
  • Vendu par : Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Langue : Anglais
  • ISBN-10: 0593064488
  • ISBN-13: 978-0593064481
  • ASIN: B00GO9BNSE
  • Synthèse vocale : Activée
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  • Classement des meilleures ventes d'Amazon: n°80.849 dans la Boutique Kindle (Voir le Top 100 dans la Boutique Kindle)
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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.3 étoiles sur 5  53 commentaires
5 internautes sur 5 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
2.0 étoiles sur 5 Sigh, again. 8 septembre 2014
Par David Barri - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché
ICE's writing has improved but his stories and storytelling are still poor. Yet another book that ends in an anti-climax. Yet another book that fails to appeal emotionally (in great contrast to anything of SE's). I will continue to read ICE because I love the world but I hope that in future he has more rewarding stories to tell, and learns how to tell them more effectively.

EDIT: After reading some interviews with ICE it's apparent that the man has genuine love for the world and the stories. I hope he continues developing his craft and learns to work some more depth and emotion in. Looking forward to his future works and evolution as a writer.
3 internautes sur 3 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 A somewhat flawed, but ultimately satisfying conclusion - one that leaves you hoping for more, continuing stories! 16 août 2014
Par Hrishikesh Diwan - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Format Kindle|Achat vérifié
Closure is an elusive thing! This book promised answers to questions that had been posed to/ by fans of all things Malazan, myself included, for perhaps a decade or more. All questions open since at least 2001, when "Memories of Ice" came out were howling for answers (being the third and perhaps the best Malazan book written by Steven Erikson). And what questions! The mysterious continent of Assail and its dread secrets, the ultimate fate of the Crimson Guard, the resolution of the stand-off between the undead T'lan Imass and Silverfox, their mortal Summoner... this slim volume (by Malazan standards, at a mere 550 pages) promised answers, at long last.

Does it deliver? To me, as a die-hard fan who is now nearly 20 books into this shared world, it mostly delivered. It isn't perfect, but it will do. Except for the rather anti-climactic appearance of a "big bad" at the end, I was quite satisfied that justice had been done with the stories of the characters that are Esselmont's to play with in this shared world. K'azz D'avore, some members of the Malazan Imperial Old Guard, the Crimson Guard, Fisher Tel Kath, Kyle, and Silverfox all get a fitting farewell.

As with any Malazan book it takes off slowly and builds up tension right until the final 100 pages - until you are left on tenterhooks wondering just how the author is going to resolve all that needs resolving in the remaining pages. For the most part the author does manage to deliver closure, although tellingly he resolves a couple of key items only in the epilogue, and closes on a whopper of a revelation that left me cursing, knowing that this was the last (planned) volume in his telling of the tale. Alas, if this is the end, Mr Esselmont has toyed with us one last time in parting. So be it!

I will not write a plot summary, because the jacket blurb for this book serves adequately for that, and I am loathe to reveal spoilers. Suffice it to say this was a breezy read that I could finish in a day and a half of reading.

I am left with only two overall complaints and one fervent hope - the foremost complaint is that this finale didn't quite leave me with the emotional wallop such as what I'd felt at the end of Erikson's main series - the two part finale that was Dust of Dreams and The Crippled God. Esselmont doesn't quite reach the depths that Erikson does when it comes to pulling my heartstrings, and that's that.

My other, rather pedantic complaint regards the tag-line for the book: "A novel of the Malazan Empire" it most certainly is not. It is only loosely related to events in that storied empire, much less so than Esselmont's early books, and on par with (or perhaps less than) his penultimate book Blood and Bone. These last two most certainly felt like outriggers, designed to wrap up the sprawling loose ends.

As for that fervent hope - ah, I only hope this is in fact, not the last story that is told by Mr Esselmont in the Malazan world. There are stories there yet, and while Mr Erikson works on his prequel trilogy, I'd request Mr Esselmont to push ahead on new quests in this wonderful world... not prequels, mind, for I know he is planning a trilogy set in the early empire period - I would want him to continue the threads he and Mr Erikson have not tied off...
4 internautes sur 5 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
2.0 étoiles sur 5 Thank the gods this series is over. 9 octobre 2014
Par scottyFL - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Format Kindle|Achat vérifié
Oh, this book.

I’m not sure where to begin. If you’ve read this book or are thinking of reading it, you’ve obviously made your way through a good portion of either the Malazan Book of the Fallen by Erikson, the Malazan Empire Novels by Esselmont, or (most likely) both. By now I’m sure you’ve noticed a distinct difference in the writing styles of Erikson and Esselmont. That difference is most punctuated in this novel, Assail.

This novel is so uneven and poorly paced that it makes the high moments feel like too little, too late. And don’t get me wrong – there are some high moments. There’s some actually really great moments that rival some of the great convergences in the Book of the Fallen. But the in-between travelogue and ho-hum character development make the gaps between these moments vast and dry. While a question or two about the nature of the Crimson Guard’s Vow gets unsurprisingly answered, the big picture of what’s actually been going on in the continent of Assail this whole time is quite the letdown. Let me break it down a little more (minor spoilers):

You thought some 50,000 of the undead T’lan Imass army were trapped in a bitter war on Assail with powerful Tyrants and mages who presented the biggest threat in the series yet, right? Sounded like there would be some awesome battles and throwdowns and balls-to-the-wall bravery and sacrifice, right? Well, it turns out you were told that by an unreliable source. Turns out that’s not the situation at all. Nope, there’s a bunch of unsophisticated sorta-human tribes killing anyone who intrudes on their land, and that’s pretty much all that’s happened in the last few millennia. And there’s gold, because the plot needed a reason to draw a bunch of people to the continent.

Remember Anomander Rake? He might be “back.” You’re never going to learn for sure, but there’s a badass amnesiac Tiste Andii walking around and Esselmont wastes no time in insinuating that he’s brought back a character whose death is unrivaled in the genre as one of the noblest, most complete, most fulfilling sacrifices for a greater cause… and notably also entirely crafted and superbly executed written by Erikson. Yeah, he’s just “back.” Don’t expect to find out why or how.

Then there’s Silverfox, the Summoner whose purpose is to release the poor undead Imass from their Vow so that they can continue the lives they gave up in pursuit of the races oppressing young humanity. She’s a pain in the a** to read and an even bigger annoyance to see in action. She’s old, despite being comprised of two near-immortal beings and a powerful mage. She’s powerless against her own people, even though she apparently has the ability to make them mortal again. She’s guilt-ridden, feeble, and banal. Even though she had one of the most awesome quest set-ups ever in Memories of Ice (remember her in that book? She was a BAMF!) she hobbles around Assail Doing Nothing, especially when it counts at the end. Her performance of Nothing would be remarkable if it wasn't so confusing.

And then there’s the ever-present Malazans. Esselmont actually did some good footwork here and it was fun, as always, to see Old Guard players mixing it up. I find no flaw here. These sections of the novel were the best to read.

So, to recap: Esselmont has Silverfox, a revived Anomander Rake (maybe), the lost tribe of the Imass, the feared Forkrul Assail, some Malazan Old Guard, the freaking Crimson Guard, and some other characters I haven’t even mentioned running around in this one place and somehow, almost impossibly, the bulk of the story is people walking through fields and riding on boats. This is why I have come to hate Esselmont’s books.

There’s some good, some bad, and lots of blah. I give it 2/5 stars because the blah and the bad overwhelm the good, in my opinion.
2 internautes sur 2 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
3.0 étoiles sur 5 Fooled me 5 times before.......I should have known 29 août 2014
Par Scott R Martin - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Format Kindle|Achat vérifié
It seems that the Esslemont versions of the Malazan novels alll follow the same disappointing formula. Great set up---good development---action in the middle---and a very non-climatic and disappointing ending. I've read all of these after reading all of Erikson's 10 original volumes--which I rate as the best in this category of fiction, but I won't be fooled again.
3 internautes sur 4 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Perfect Ending 15 août 2014
Par Trey Hollen - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié|Achat vérifié
The end of the Crimson Guard story does not fail to deliver. The answers they are looking for in Assail are wonderfully foreshadowed throughout the story and I had the idea about two thirds of the way through. The ending is satisfying and entirely appropriate. Esslemont also manages to build a unique land in the Malazan world that feels all his own even as he sprinkles a cast of characters we know and love from the main Book of the Fallen series. And last but not least, I hadn't realized how much I had come to appreciate the Malazan style of so many separate story lines converging into one fantastic climax. This book pays off the series wonderfully and is an absolute necessity on any fantasy book shelf.
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