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Return of the Crimson Guard (Malazan Empire Novels (Unnumbered)) Hardcover – 13 Apr 2010


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 701 pages
  • Publisher: Tor Books; 1 edition (13 April 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0765323702
  • ISBN-13: 978-0765323705
  • Product Dimensions: 16.3 x 3.8 x 24 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (33 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 4,901,644 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

"Everything you expect of a Malazan story, being both epic and relevant... nail-biting and anything but obvious" (SFFWORLD)

"The Malazan franchise is fighting fit in the hands of its co-creator" (SFX magazine) --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

Book Description

The epic new fantasy from Steven Erikson's friend and co-creator of the world of Malaz. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

30 of 32 people found the following review helpful By A. Whitehead TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 19 Sept. 2008
Format: Hardcover
2008 is proving to be something of a bumper year for fans of the Malazan universe. Steven Erikson's eighth novel in the setting, Toll the Hounds, was published back in June and the first novel in the series, Gardens of the Moon, has seen two reprintings this year. The first was as a new, wallet-friendly budget edition from Bantam designed to entice new readers to the series, whilst Subterranean Press are about to release a new, limited edition beautifully illustrated by the mighty Michael Kormack. And to top it all off, Ian Cameron Esslemont, the co-creator of the Malazan world, has had his second novel published.

Return of the Crimson Guard starts shortly after the events of Erikson's sixth book, The Bonehunters. The Malazan Empire is in trouble. Whilst the Genabackan campaign has ended in peaceful negotiations with Anomander Rake's Tiste Andii and the remaining free cities, the Seven Cities theatre has turned into a bloodbath. The rebellion known as the Whirlwind has been crushed only at a truly staggering cost, whilst the subcontinent has been devastated by plague. The two most disgraced officers of that campaign, Mallick Rel and Korbolo Dom, have somehow come up smelling of roses and risen to high office within the Empire. They have turned the blame for that campaign on the Wickans, and now Malazan settlers desperate for new land are embarking on a pogrom of the Wickan homelands. Elsewhere, the near-annihilation of the elite imperial assassin-mages, the Claw, in the battle for Malaz City has seen Empress Laseen's position weakened and long-quiescent nationalist movements across Quon Tali, the Empire's heartland, have awoken with a passion.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Wintergreen on 24 Sept. 2008
Format: Hardcover
A while back, during a lull in Erikson's Book of the Fallen release cycle, Esslemont's Night of Knives: A Novel of the Malazan Empire came out, and I, keen to get some further Malazan word nourishment, snapped up the hardback off Amazon. Unfortunately it was somewhat disappointing and I was left worrying that perhaps Esslemont would not add to this rich world that he and Erikson co-created as much as I (and I'm sure you) were hoping.

I saw this tome with a reduced price while browsing a local bookshop and, as nothing else had taken my fancy (as well as its rather more promising size and the lure of the Crimson Guard in the title) thought 'why not?' and decided to give him another go. Why do I mention this? Because I am now very glad I did! If like me you were sitting on the fence about this I can heartily recommend that you do the same, I'm certain you won't regret it.

The only people I'm assuming are reading this review are those who've already read Erikson's stuff (if you haven't then you really should before getting started on this one (you've got a treat in store!)) so to you: RotCG picks up where Erikson left off (figuratively speaking) and tells the story (unsurprisingly) of the Crimson Guard, who've only made cameo appearances in Erikson's stuff so far, and their return to Unta to take their long-awaited revenge on the Malazan empire. I won't spoil any of the plot points here, but if you were wanting to hear more about Skinner, Iron Bars, Cowl et al then you won't be disappointed. There's also the usual cast of marines, sappers, mages and all the rest you'll know and love including (but still not enough!) some appearances by various Seguleh as well...
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Gareth Wilson - Falcata Times Blog TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 16 Oct. 2008
Format: Paperback
After being a bit disappointed with Esslemont's first offering I was, to be honest, leaving this tale in my reading pile for a bit until I had not much else to chose from as I was a bit unhappy with his first offering. However I was surprised when I finally picked it up as within the pages Ian's writing style along with character development not only improved but also allowed the reader to experience a new dimension to the Malazan world (made famous by Steven Erikson.) A cracking offering and one that has left me wondering about what I can expect from his next offering when his writing has improved so much from the last instalment. A tale of combat and daring do as the Crimson Guard carve themselves a slice of the Malazan world leaving a trail of destruction in their wake and a book that is an ideal companion to the more established series.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By E. Kraev on 18 Feb. 2010
Format: Paperback
Not a bad book as such, but doesn't measure up to the standard of the Book of the Fallen in my opinion. Main reason is that Esslemont explains much too much. A large part of the charm of BoF for me is the sense of a vast mysterious world created when entities and even whole peoples drift in and out of focus inside any given book without any explanation given, and one must piece together their meaning, if any, across the whole BoF. Esslemont, on the other hand, always obligingly provides the back story whenever someone new comes up, giving the whole a much shallower feel for me. Don't think I'll be buying many more of his books, though I'm a religious follower of BoF itself.
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