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Shadowheart: The Shadowmarch sequence Paperback – 3 Nov 2011


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Frequently Bought Together

Shadowheart: The Shadowmarch sequence + Shadowrise: Shadowmarch Quartet Book 3 + Shadowplay: Shadowmarch Trilogy Book Two (Shadowmarch Quartet)
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Product details

  • Paperback: 896 pages
  • Publisher: Orbit (3 Nov. 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1841499242
  • ISBN-13: 978-1841499246
  • Product Dimensions: 12.8 x 4.4 x 19.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 147,522 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Former singer, shoe-seller and radio show host, Tad Williams is now a full-time writer. His Memory, Sorrow and Thorn series established him as one of the most internationally popular fantasy authors of recent years.

Product Description

Review

'A fourth volume that nails everything you could want from the conclusion of an epic fantasy yarn... rich in detail and exploding with imagination' (SFX)

Book Description

The concluding volume of the spectacular Shadowmarch quartet - the series that haralded master storyteller Tad Williams's long-awaited return to epic fantasy

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 15 Feb. 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Somewhere early in his writing career Tad Williams lost the ability to write a trilogy in less than 4 parts.
The excellent 'Memory, Sorrow & Thorn' saw it's final book divide into two. It was none the worse for it though which is more than can be said of 'Otherland', three outstanding works of fantasy & fiction undone by a truly disappointing weak fourth & final episode.
So it was with some nervousness I read in the forward to the 3rd of the Shadowmarch books that once again Mr.Williams had overdone it & was headed for a fourth volume to close out this series.
There was some consolation in the fact that 'Shadowrise' was as well written as the previous two but when 'Shadowheart' was delivered from Amazon I felt we were all doomed when I saw the sheer size of it. 700 pages! Surely an editor has fallen asleep somewhere or Tad has simply overdone it and lost the plot?
There is so much story still to be told that we join the tale after a major event has happened that isn't even told in detail. The scale of the Autarch's plans are so monumental and threaten every living creature to such an extent that, incredibly, the humans of South march and the Qar have joined forces to face this terrifying enemy.
Hendon Tolly gambles against the Autarch and finds himself outplayed. Unfortunately the poet Tinwright cannot escape his clutches and looks doomed. Briony makes her, oh so slow, way back to her home as does her Father alongside,(albeit as prisoner), the Autarch.
Barrick has taken on the memories of the Qar men and struggles with his newly acquired knowledge & with being something a little more than human.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Bex on 27 April 2011
Format: Hardcover
Wow, I've waited a long time for the thrilling close of the Shadowmarch books. This didn't disapoint - I'm tempted to start at the begining again!
This is the last of four books, so don't buy unless you've read the first three!
Tad Williams creates a whole world so fully that I get completely caught up in it. The best fantasy writer currently writing that I know of.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Granny Weatherwax on 6 Mar. 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Judging from the previous books, I was sure I would not be disappointed and I was right. This is a matching finale to a great series, as any fan could have guessed. A few of the scenes during the big last battle took me a bit by surprise, as this kind of gore is not what I would normally expect from this writer, but it is just a minor objection in a story that good. Looks like Tad Williams is the best living fantasy writer at the moment :)
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By SonicQuack VINE VOICE on 3 Mar. 2011
Format: Hardcover
After three heavyweight tomes, Shadowheart concludes the series with another large chunk of tree, surprising since the final two volumes were supposed to be just one book. The myriad of characters, ranging from the Southmarch royals, the faerie Qar, the god-king Autarch, the Funderlings and half a dozen others, finally converge story arcs as war comes to Southmarch. What could have been a simple siege tale is anything but. With so many stories and characters the siege event is almost obscured, however Williams has bigger plans than a simple revamp of other fantasy stories. In the final third the finale is nothing short of cataclysmic, breaking free of the usual genre shackles and evidencing his talent.

What makes this quartet great is also the Achilles' Heel. Too many strands, with too little time spent on each to keep momentum up, is hard going. Especially is minor characters turn up and become rather important more than once. There are some rather coincidental moments which stretch credibility too, at times there's a faint aura of Australian soap opera. Where previous chapters balanced emotional impact well, there are less moments of real magic in the final volume, although the elongated pre-epilogue epilogue makes as many amends as possible.

Those points aside, Shadowheart is true to the quartet and worthy finale. It is daring and despite it's length it does not feel bloated, even though Williams' narrative style is far from concise. Another great fantasy epic under Tad's belt - recommended.
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By A. Whitehead TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 2 Jan. 2012
Format: Paperback
The armies of the Qar and the Autarch of Xis have converged on Shadowmarch Castle, which now stands siege from enemies attacking by sea, land and underground. Ferras Vansen leads a desperate fight in the subterranean depths under the castle, trying to hold back the Xixians from the mysteries which the Funderlings have sworn to protect for generations. Briony Eddon is also heading home with a small Syanese army, but her resolve to help her people is challenged when she learns that her father is a captive of the Autarch...

Shadowheart is the fourth and final novel in the Shadowmarch sequence, the third major series by American author Tad Williams. The series is a slow-burner, with a pace that can best be called 'relaxed'. Empires may be forged, armies may clash and ancient secrets may be unveiled, but it all happens at a leisurely, chilled-out rate. This is epic fantasy at its cosiest and most predictable. Which is not to say the series is unenjoyable. Williams has saved the best for last here, with a plethora of battles and a smattering of intrigue to digest before the grand finale (complete with the villains all receiving appropriate come-uppances) and the long, 100-page epilogue in which the characters' fates are all neatly wrapped up and explained.

As with the previous books, the best moments are reserved for Ferras Vansen and Chert the Funderling, who are now leading the subterranean war as the Funderlings try to hold back the invading Xixians with the extremely reluctant help of the Qar. These underground battle sequences go on for a bit too long, but for the most part are exciting and tense. This is more than can be said for the scenes involving Barrick Eddon.
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