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The Burning Stone (Crown of Stars) [Hardcover]

Kate Elliott
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)

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Book Description

6 May 1999 Crown of Stars (Book 7)

KING'S DRAGON and PRINCE OF DOGS began Kate Elliott's enthralling tale of the war-torn kingdoms of Wendar and Varre and the story of Alain's and Liath's quests for truth. Now THE BURNING STONE continues the epic saga.

An uncertain and uneasy peace has fallen on the kingdom of Wendar. It seems that the king's favour has fallen upon Prince Sanglant, his bastard son, and that he is to be the chosen heir. But Sanglant is too troubled by the recent past to seek that crown. He needs Liath, the woman who saved him from his terrible captivity, even though such a liaison must incur the wrath of his father. For her part, Liath knows that her future lies with Sanglant. But she has also learned that her mother, presumed to be dead, is in fact still alive and searching for her, to school Liath in the powerful sorcerous arts. And Alain, their friend and ally, is in mortal danger from the curse of Bloodheart, who is reaching out from the grave...



Product details

  • Hardcover: 768 pages
  • Publisher: Orbit; 1st Edition edition (6 May 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1857237609
  • ISBN-13: 978-1857237603
  • Product Dimensions: 16.5 x 23.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,581,598 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Amazon Review

There is nothing more tragic than legitimate ambition comprehensively thwarted- -Kate Elliott's fantasy sequence has a bleak sadness even in its moments of triumph, simply because her heroes and heroines seem as if they are never going to get the chance to be all they could be. Alan, suddenly adopted heir to the local noble, is obliged to marry an anorexic princess whose hobby of heresy extends to fake stigmata; royal courier Liath and more than slightly deranged royal bastard Sanglant find that their love stands in the way of the King's dynastic plans; the prattish monk Ivar runs away from heresy proceedings and hides among a princeling's boon companions and catamites. And while the nobility juggle marriages, and churchmen bicker about doctrine, invaders mass on the borders and the world seems booked for cataclysms political and metaphysical. Elliott has not yet become as popular as she probably deserves--she has a real sense of what even an imaginary mediaeval world should be like, in its pompous scholarship and simple piety, and her characters are interestingly fluid; place Ivar in a cavalry charge, and he does quite well. This third volume sustains the pace and grim tone of its predecessors in the Crown of Stars sequence. --Roz Kaveney

Review

There is nothing more tragic than legitimate ambition comprehensively thwarted and Kate Elliott's fantasy sequence has a bleak sadness even in its moments of triumph, simply because her heroes and heroines seem as if they are never going to get the chance to be all they could be. Alan, suddenly adopted heir to the local noble, is obliged to marry an anorexic princess whose hobby of heresy extends to fake stigmata; royal courier Liath and more than slightly deranged royal bastard Sanglant find that their love stands in the way of the King's dynastic plans; the prattish monk Ivar runs away from heresy proceedings and hides among a young prince's boon companions and catamites. And while the nobility juggle marriages and churchmen bicker about doctrine, invaders mass on the borders and the world seems booked for cataclysms political and metaphysical. Elliott has not yet become as popular as she probably deserves--she has a real sense of what even an imaginary mediaeval world should be like, in its pompous scholarship and simple piety, and her characters are interestingly fluid; place Ivar in a cavalry charge and he does quite well. This third volume sustains the pace and grim tone of its predecessors in the Crown of Stars sequence. (Roz Kaveney, AMAZON.CO.UK)

A gripping and enthralling fantasy epic (The TIMES)

A grand and powerful piece of writing (Katharine Kerr)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Extremely good. Buy it. 30 Mar 2001
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
An uncertain and uneasy peace has fallen on the kingdom of Wendar, but at the court of King Henry the various factions still jockey relentlessly and ruthlessly for position. It seems that the king's favor has fallen upon Prince Sanglant, his bastard son, and that he is to be the chosen heir. But Sanglant is too troubled by the recent past to seek that crown. He needs time to recover and, most of all, he needs Liath, the woman who saved him from his terrible captivity - even though such a liaison must incur his father's implacable wrath.
Liath, born with a dangerous power beyond her understanding or ability to control, is torn between her longing for Sanglant and the child they are about to have and the call of sorcery, which can open the way into the land of the Aoi, the Lost Ones. She has also learned that her mother, a powerful practitioner of the banned sorcerous arts, is not dead, as she always thought, and is seeking her to school her in the same arts.
And Alain, their friend and ally, although happily restored to the bosom of his family and married to the saintly Tallia, is in mortal danger from the curse of Bloodheart, who is reaching out from the grave.
As the fates of kingdoms shift with the changing fortunes of those caught up in the dangers of both civil war and continuing attacks by the nonhuman Eika and the Quman invaders, time is running out for Liath, Sanglant, King Henry, and the people of Wendar and Varre.
Like the reviews before my, this story mainly focuses on the Plot, and gets the story moving. though at the end of it you have even more questions than you did have at the beginning. You also have more of an understanding of what the 'Crown of Stars' is, and the endind is extremely good and Sad.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars My review for the whole series 8 Dec 2008
Format:Paperback
I think that there was a good story underlying this series, but I can't say that I enjoyed reading it. Call me a Philistine but I think books should be a pleasure to read - not just a challenge. For a seven book series to be a pleasure and not a challenge, the author needs to make it easy to read. And that's where old Katie falls down.

First, there was the arcane Shakesperian dialogue. At first this was a neat touch. By the end it was looking like a howling blunder. What it did was it made the book a struggle to read. Contrast this with (say) David Gemmell, Geroge Martin or (outside fantasy) Paul Auster. They're authors whose work glides down like honey. I can get through pages and pages of their work without getting tired. without finding my mind drifting onto other things.

Second, I don't have a brain the size of a planet. My paranoia is where the Marvin resemblance ends. With a series as big as this, I expect to have a cast list at the back of every volume (not just volume 6!) and I expect a recap at the start of volumes 2-7. Even if I'm reading the novels in succession, because of the way my mind's drifting, it's comforting just to have the author confirm to you that you took in the whole story and didn't miss something important.

Third, with multiple story lines, it's good to make it more clear to the reader who we're talking about. George Marin had the great idea of having the name of the viewpoint character in big letters at the start of each chapter and it would have been great if Kate could have copied this. That's a WIBNI - "wouldn't it be nice if". Not a big issue. What I found unforgivable was when the first couple of pages of a chapter didn't mention the names of the people involved. He did this, she did that, etc.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining continuation of the series. 3 Sep 2007
By A. Whitehead TOP 500 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:Paperback
The Burning Stone (1999) is the third volume in the series and picks up the storyline after the events at the Battle of Gent. The quasi-self-contained storylines of the first two novels are abandoned here in favour of a more serialised approach as Elliott kicks in the central story arc of the whole series. The reader gains an understanding of the stakes and the true nature of the threat to Novaria, but Elliott presents us with several different viewpoints of the same events and it's unclear which is the true explanation. As I mentioned earlier, enjoyment of the first two novels is marred by the weakness of the character of Liath, but in this third volume she becomes more interesting as she is confronted by the apparent truth of her upbringing and birth. Elsewhere, political intrigue gathers pace and the Eika gain a new chieftain. The Eika plotline is extremely well-handled in this series and it's a shame it isn't given more airtime, but at a thousand pages in paperback this is already a long novel that doesn't really need to be any longer.

The Burning Stone (***) is an important step forward in the series, delineating the main threats and clarifying what the central plot arc of the series actually is. However, the lack of a rigorous central narrative and the increasingly sprawling cast of characters and secondary plotlines does undermine some of the benefits of the stronger storytelling in this volume.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars EXCELLENT! 13 July 2003
Format:Paperback
Kate Elliott is a superb writer!she deserves much more recognition than she currently recieves, her crown of stars series is a work of art. she sets the scenes up brilliantly- you could almost be there, seeing the events with your own eyes, her characters have real depth and the plot is faultless-its well worked out and everything fits in together perfectly. In my opinion, the burning stone, third in the series, is the best so far. it drew me into straight away, i could hardly put it down! just when you think your finally figuring out the relationships between the characters and where the plot is going, kate elliott adds another twist in there to keep you on your toes. with this series, kate elliott easily takes the position as my all time favourite author!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Another strong episode
With well rounded characters and a complex but subtle plot, Kate continues to produce an expansive world and a great series
Published 29 days ago by Sebastian Beynon
3.0 out of 5 stars ok
did not enjoy this book as much as the other series I read, seemed to drag on to long and jumped about a lot
Published 3 months ago by Mrs. J R Brockman
4.0 out of 5 stars The Burning Stone
Good book in a great series. Can be a bit blood thirsty, so not great for younger people. But it is ultimately a love story
Published 5 months ago by S Simmons
3.0 out of 5 stars Burning stone
Some of the characters are very well done but have to say I did skip over much of the explanations of stars. Found the rock children and stronghand parts also tedious at times. Read more
Published 10 months ago by sandra crookes
4.0 out of 5 stars Another good book in the saga
This is the third installment of the Crown of Stars series but this isn't as good as the previous two. Read more
Published on 3 Dec 2008 by Simon Wells
3.0 out of 5 stars middle chapter syndrome
This isn't a bad book, but it has less direction than previous installments. It lacks focus, but this is due to it being the mddlw of the saga. Read more
Published on 9 Mar 2006 by genejoke
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Storyline and plots
The Burning Stone really speeds up the Storyline and plots. You now have a much better idea to where the story is going, as well as finding out tons of stuff about each characters... Read more
Published on 28 Mar 2001
4.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant, complex and great characters.
One of the best series I have ever read. The world is marvellously thought out and the little hints as to future events are intriguing (and can be pretty annoying as well!). Read more
Published on 4 Oct 2000
4.0 out of 5 stars Four and half stars, really...
This is the third book in the Crown of Stars seris and I think it is very good. Although not the best of the three so far, the characters are good and the story continues with... Read more
Published on 1 Oct 2000
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