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Legend (Drenai) [Paperback]

David Gemmell
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (130 customer reviews)
RRP: 8.99
Price: 6.29 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Book Description

1 Oct 2009 Drenai (Book 1)

The Legend

Druss, Captain of the Axe: the stories of his life were told everywhere. Instead of the wealth and fame he could have claimed, he had chosen a mountain lair, high in the lonely country bordering on the clouds. There the grizzled old warrior kept company with snow leopards and awaited his old enemy death.

The Fortress

Mighty Dros Delnoch, protected by six outer walls, the only route by which an army could pass through the mountains. It was the stronghold of the Drenai empire. And now it was the last battleground, for all else had fallen before the Nadir hordes.

And hope rested on the skills of that one old man...


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Legend (Drenai) + The King Beyond The Gate (Drenai) + Waylander (Drenai)
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Product details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Orbit (1 Oct 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1841498580
  • ISBN-13: 978-1841498584
  • Product Dimensions: 12.6 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (130 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 9,643 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Published in 1984, David A. Gemmell's first novel, Legend, has become a classic. His most recent Drenai and Rigante books are all published as Bantam Press hardcovers and Corgi paperbacks. All of his novels are Sunday Times bestsellers. Now widely regarded as one of the finest writers of heroic fantasy, David Gemmell lived in East Sussex until his death in July 2006.

Product Description

Review

Several rungs above the good right into the fabulous! Anne McCaffrey Has pace, conviction and gritty resolute vitality...The result is a book that will be enjoyed by Tolkien fans TIMES EDUCATIONAL SUPPLEMENT David Gemmell manages to take a familiar, generic scenario and infuse it with meaning...it's a thoughtful genre fantasy, a bit chewier than most, and quite, quite tasty LOCUS

Book Description

David Gemmell's first novel and the first in the Drenai saga - a bestselling classic of heroic fantasy

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
42 of 42 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars High adventure with firm moral roots 9 Mar 2003
Format:Paperback
To describe the plot of this novel would be to give the impression that it is a parody: the reluctant hero; numberless hordes from the East; dislike turning to love; warriors with mysterious skills; heroism against extreme odds; multiple deus ex machina; spiritual warriors; the battle of Good against Evil - all these appear in thousands of pulp novels churned out every year.

What makes Gemmell's Legend distinctive is its realism - you really believe in these characters; the way in which the action has a single focus - the siege; and, above all, the sense of human determination and suffering against the odds, howver distant and improbable ultimate victory may be. After Legend, all other such plots appear, at best, derivative. Gemmell distils the essence of all the stock characters and situations, blending them into a seamless whole

In a strange way, it wouldn't matter if Evil did triumph over Good in this book - Gemmell's great achievement is to convince us that the struggle is right, necessary and rewarding, in and of itself. Fantasy doesn't come any better than this
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23 of 23 people found the following review helpful
By Maki
Format:Paperback
What I always enjoy about David Gemmell's books are that the characters are human. They aren't the all-powerful immortal death machines that are in other cliche-ridden novels. They are people, with flaws and insecurities. In addition, the action scenes are all well written and grip you like a vice.

The books starts off slowly, but gathers momentum with each page until the assault on the fortress which was spellbinding page-turning stuff. (I was up until 2:45am on a night before work reading it - just couldn't put it down!) True, the relationship between Rek and his lady seemed a little rushed, but then it was a "love-at-first-sight" thing. If you want heroic, epic fantasy reading, David Gemmel's your man.

I just wish a good film-maker would make a film centred around Gemmell's novels - they'd make epic movies.
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32 of 33 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A legend indeed. 27 Sep 2006
By Mr. G. Battle VINE VOICE
Format:Paperback
Having read the Rigante series, but never a Drenai novel, I thought I'd head back to Gemmell's early work which put him on the page. There is an easy comparison to be made for Legend. Imagine a whole book devoted to the Helms Deep siege of Lord of the Rings and you're very close. The first half is character building, slowly and surely weaving emotional threads around the protagonists. There are some stereotypes in there, but this is enjoyable old-fashioned fantasy and no harm is done. When the siege begins, almost in to the last third, you have been lured in to a page turner. The chaos and death that seeps from the page is cleverly written, it paints a big picture of war, and is also full of the small detail of the central chararcters. Although a self-contained novel the characterisation will ensure you want to return to the Drenai saga. A very well written book of man and war; of love and death. This is war up close and dirty - dive in and read the one that started it all.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Legend is the definitive fantasy novel 21 Jan 1999
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
To describe the plot of this novel would be to give the impression that it is a parody: the reluctant hero; numberless hordes from the East; dislike turning to love; warriors with mysterious skills; heroism against extreme odds; multiple deus ex machina; spiritual warriors; the battle of Good against Evil - all these appear in thousands of pulp novels churned out every year.
What makes Gemmell's Legend distinctive is its realism - you really believe in these characters; the way in which the action has a single focus - the siege; and, above all, the sense of human determination and suffering against the odds, howver distant and improbable ultimate victory may be. After Legend, all other such plots appear, at best, derivative. Gemmell distils the essence of all the stock characters and situations, blending them into a seamless whole
In a strange way, it wouldn't matter if Evil did triumph over Good in this book - Gemmells' great achievement is to convince us that the struggle is right, necessary and rewarding, in and of itself. Fantasy doesn't come any better than this
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Was this review helpful to you?
20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gemmell's Best Book? 10 Aug 2005
By AndyBSG VINE VOICE
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
One of David Gemmell's earlier novels but still ranking as one of his best in my opinion.
Legend is a tale of many things but is mainly about the human spirit. The action in this fantasy novel tells of a foundering race who are under attack by a ferocious and savage horde, intent on bringing the fortress of Dros Delnoch to it's knees.
Into this breach steps a medley of heroes, and I use the term loosely. Each character in this novel has their reasons for being at the doomed fortress and few of them are truly noble. From the bumbling commander who is reviled by his own troops, the young farm boy seeking glory, the cowardly warrior fighting against his will, the mysterious Thirty and the aged legend of Druss who is just looking to die in battle, the characters are varied.
What really makes this book though is the sheer spirit of the people in it and the fact that all of them have motives other than being a hero. the way Gemmell seems to subtly suggest that all heroes are merely victims of circumstance is also quite intriguing and is shown by the bumbling commander and the cowardly warrior, are they any less of a hero than the mighty Druss by the time the story ends? Maybe they, who are not as accomplished in warcraft are the true heroes rather than Druss, a career killing machine?
While some criticise Gemmell for not having the complexity of an author like Tolkien, I personally find him a much better read. When I read, I want to be entertained by what is unfolding, not concentrating on each minute detail and Legend is a real page turning entertainment.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Not as good as Troy but an okay read
Being his first book, I can certainly see that Gemmel's writing style improved with experience. The story began and ended too quickly for me, so it was hard to absorb and believe... Read more
Published 1 day ago by Miss M Phipps
4.0 out of 5 stars Legendary
"Legend" was the first novel written by David Gemmell and as the new introduction points out it remained his personal favourite. Read more
Published 1 day ago by Neil Lennon
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome
a thoroughly good read will be reading all the others immediately. I highly recommend this to anyone as it is an entertaining read.
Published 12 days ago by MISS SUE P C SUTTON
4.0 out of 5 stars DRUSS; what a Legend!
Have come to Gemmell's work late in my reading career. So if you've been weened on Tolkein, Moorcock (especially Elric) and the like; this stuff shapes up pretty well! Read more
Published 12 days ago by D'Averque
4.0 out of 5 stars Perfect? No. Entertaining? Yes
If you like an easy to read page turning high fantasy novel you'll like this and bang through it pretty quickly. Read more
Published 14 days ago by Mr A Gower
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic!!! A brilliant writer!
I recently read the Troy series, which is now amongst my favourite trilogies. Having enjoyed David Gemmell's writing so much I thought I would try another of his works and I wasn't... Read more
Published 19 days ago by Miss S Stevens
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb read.
This book has prompted me to read more of David Gemmell. Superb writer. Would like to read the books in the right order. Anybody help in that request?
Published 1 month ago by m.ferentiuk
5.0 out of 5 stars Ultimate fantasy adventure with epic characters
A cracking read for all......... David Gemmell was one of the best authors or the modern era ,He created great worlds and great characters and Legend is the best
Published 3 months ago by Andy Bowman
5.0 out of 5 stars review
Always my favourite
Once a year I have to reread the Druss saga, early chronicles, death walker, legend, then swords of night and day.
Love this book!
Published 3 months ago by Mark
5.0 out of 5 stars Always a Legend
Loved this book when I originally read it back in the 80's still love it. A couple of typos that could do with sorting otherwise a good addition to my kindle library.
Published 3 months ago by Somtaww
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