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The Emerald Sceptre (Scions of Arrabar) [Mass Market Paperback]

Thomas Reid
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Book Description

3 Oct 2005 Scions of Arrabar (Book 3)
The last in the trilogy of Forgotten Realms novels from Thomas M. Reid.

This is the concluding novel in a trilogy exploring the political intrigue of a mercenary society in the Forgotten Realms world. Author Thomas M. Reid has written the entire trilogy, which takes place in an area of the world little before explored in novels.

AUTHOR BIO: THOMAS M. REID held numerous positions with TSR and Wizards of the Coast, Inc., including brand manager for the D&D® brand and creative director for Star Wars® RPGs. Besides the Scions of Arrabar trilogy, his most recent novel is Insurrection, the second book in the New York Times best-selling R.A. Salvatore’s War of the Spider Queen series.

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Product details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 309 pages
  • Publisher: Wizards of the Coast; Reissue edition (3 Oct 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0786937548
  • ISBN-13: 978-0786937547
  • Product Dimensions: 17 x 11 x 2.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,193,697 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars
4.0 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent trilogy 25 Nov 2005
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
An excellent novel, from an all round excellent trilogy
Thomas Reid, has used just the right amount of magic and monsters to ensure a good (forgotten realms style) story, with plenty of twists and turns, and City of Arrabar political intrigue, whilst not being overly dependant on magic for the plot
This trilogy is similar to the sembia series, and I look forward to some future stories, (long lost family members could be a great addition, but not entirely needed) The story in this particular novel (part 3) does leave plenty of scope for future installments, whilst rounding off this series nicely.
The whole trilogy was very cleverly put together
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4.0 out of 5 stars A semi-precious gem in the series 26 Aug 2005
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This is the third part in the 'Scions of Arrabar' series set in the Forgotten Realms.
With many trilogies there is a tendency to hurry through the events in the last book to provide a neat conclusion and to ensure no loose ends.
I was however pleasantly surprised that the story was not too rushed. Also it is nice to see that there is the potential for another few books in the series, since not everything was completely 'wrapped up'
Although not the strongest book in the trilogy, it is still an enjoyable read.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Some good bits 16 Feb 2011
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
It took me some few years to get round to reading this final part but that was a mistake because it is closely linked to part 2, unlike parts 1 and 2 which can be read separately.

In fact in part 2 a series of traps are set up to remove the Matrells and their allies and this final part is about how they attempt to escape those traps and return the realm to normal.

There are some good ideas in here and some great actions scenes with excellent villains and fiendish plots particularly towards the end. Just make sure you read this and part 2 back to back otherwise you may get lost - there is a lot of references back to previous events.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Ended well, 22 Mar 2006
By Rylin
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This, the third book in the Scions of Arrabar, was a good book to enjoy on a long flight from Beijing. The characters were well done, but not complete. Maybe it was just me. oVer all, liked it and would recommend it.

Good fantasy.
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Amazon.com: 4.4 out of 5 stars  9 reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Reid finishes well 31 Jan 2006
By Derek J. Jordan - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
The Emerald Scepter is the final book in the Scions of Arrabar Trilogy, but you wouldn't be able to tell from reading it! It seems to me that Trilogys and many of the standalones just won't let you walk away with a solid ending ( which is fine, but sometimes I wish for one )

I enjoyed the story as it 'obviously' carried over from book two, but had to check back ( in both books as I read them ) to understand what was going on. I never really 'felt' for many of the characters ( Especially not the main, Vambrin ) except for Emriana and Arbeendk ( the 'monkey' looking man on the front of The Emerald Scepter ). Many times I felt the story was rushed and choppy, but all did come to a well balanced ending that tied up the loose ends ( though adding new ones ).

As I stated in my review of The Ruby Guardian a general lover of fantasy can enjoy these books, but it is not the 'cream of the crop'.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Ended well 17 Mar 2006
By Karl - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This, the third book in the Scions of Arrabar, was a good book to enjoy on a long flight from Beijing. The characters were well done, but not complete. Maybe it was just me. oVer all, liked it and would recommend it.

Good fantasy.

If you like books like this one, might I suggest another I've recently come across. The Unsuspecting Mage by Brian S. Pratt. It's another fantasy adventure sure to please. I highly recommend it.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Emerald Scepter by Thomas M. Reid 6 May 2010
By Travis Eisenbrandt - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
The Emerald Scepter by Thomas M. Reid- This is the second book in The Scions of Arrabar Trilogy. The first book is called The Sapphire Crescent and the second book is called The Ruby Guardian. The Emerald Scepter is set in the Forgotten Realms fantasy setting. Thomas M. Reid's other Forgotten Realms novels include; The Empyrean Odyssey (The Gossamer Plain, The Fractured Sky, and The Crystal Mountain) and one book in R. A. Salvatore's War of the Spider Queen series called Insurrection. His other works include; Truth & Steel, Forged, The Temple of Elemental Evil, and Gridrunner. He has also contributed a number of short stories to various anthologies. The trilogy is currently only available used or from online sellers, as far as I can tell. The Emerald Scepter was released in 2005 by Wizards of the Coast, Inc.

The following summary will contain spoilers for The Sapphire Crescent and The Ruby Guardian.

We pick up exactly where The Ruby Guardian left off. Vambran Matrell comes face to face his uncle Kovrim, who is now a mindless zombie, in the city of Reth. Vambran and his druid companion, Arbeenok, find themselves in the middle of a zombie plague while trying to rescue Vambran's captured mercenary company. With Arbeenok by Vambran's side, the duo goes on a quest to find a way to stop the plague, which takes them underwater and into more peril. We shift back to the city of Arrabar to find Vambran's younger sister, Emriana, trapped in a mirror. After being released by a person who wants revenge, Emriana may have wished to stay in the mirror. At the same time, a Waukeen (the goddess of coin and wealth) priest names Pilos is captured and is being led to his death. But a friendly old lady may just save his life. Finally, we see some of Vambran's lieutenants on their way back to Arrabar to help protect Vambran's family, but things get complicated. Can Vambran and Arbeenok find a cure in time to save Reth and stop the plague? Will Emriana escape her imprisonment and find revenge? Will Pilos escape and bring those corrupt in Waukeen's service to justice? Can Vambran's lieutenants help protect the family?

Criticisms:
1) Love Interest. There are really two problems with love interests in this book. The first problem is that one of them is awkwardly placed, concerning Emriana and Pilos. The other I won't touch on in this point. Why is Em and Pilos' love interested terrible? It was sudden, and, quite honestly, unreal. It just wasn't placed well at all. For one thing, in The Ruby Guardian, which is the first time Em and Pilos meet, they have this awkward, forced chemistry between them. Not to mention that Pilos wasn't really a well-developed character (in fact, he mostly felt tacked on) in that book. Then in this book, we have all these clues that they like one another, but it just doesn't feel right. It would have been different if in the first book that this relationship started, but having it start late in the second book and carry over to the third book, it just didn't work. It just was unbelievable and silly.
2) Vambran's 'Loves'. This is the other love interest problem. The reason it's not in with the above problem because there is no 'interest', just Vambran being a seemingly irresistible man who every women in the story wants a piece of (well, almost every). Once again, this issue stems from the second book and just gets worse. In The Ruby Guardian, we have Vambran have some 'playtime' with a druid leader. This was a little more understandable due to the fact that the druid said that she liked him from the moment she saw him and that they actually had some chemistry. That's fine, and that love 'plot' was okay. Then later in The Ruby Guardian, we meet someone else who's 'shared Vambran's bed' in the past. I was okay with this as well. At least there was no awkward sex transitions with that 'interest'. In fact, this person Vambran doesn't do the deed with! Hooray! Now we get to the part that ruins any illusion of Vambran's not being a male prostitute. In this story, Vambran goes off and has 'fun' with a sea elf. There doesn't seem to be a reason, other than the sea elf wanting Vambran. Sure, there may have been a dilute and trivial reason, but it just wasn't written very well. In fact, this made me go back and question Vambran's hook up with the druid and the other woman. The sea elf tainted my view of him. The fact the Vambran is doing these things with almost completely random women, just disgusted me. I'm okay with having sex in the stories, it's fine most of the time. But when you make a decent character into some kind of 'player', it just ruins anything heroic or noble about him. It's just disgusting.

Praises:
1) Minor Characters. I do have to say that in this story the minor characters are fairly good. They aren't wonderful, but they do play their parts and they play them well enough. In the previous books, the minor characters didn't really shine, they just were there and easily forgotten. In The Emerald Scepter, they have a bigger role and they do accomplish things. For example, one of the lieutenants named Horial has wonderful chemistry and conversation with a druid named Edilus. It was humorous and genuine. Those scenes were some of the highlights of various chapters. However, there still were a lot of 'useless' people who didn't really add anything other than a line or two. Adyan, another of Vambran's lieutenant's, just was there and felt wooden and kind of useless. He didn't add much (aside from some dialogue lines) and didn't do much. But considering how some of the minor characters were in The Sapphire Crescent and The Ruby Guardian were easily forgettable, at least in The Emerald Scepter, the characters did something useful.
2) Ending. I did enjoy how everything wraps up. The plots were wrapped up well and everything seemed to be finished. The whole Vambran story does seem finished and complete, now he can go and be a 'player' some more. Emriana's story ends surprisingly well. Almost everything is wrapped up (except for one thing that I think was downplayed a little too much) and it seemed like her story was pretty much done. Even the questions that were left unanswered wasn't that bad. It really did seem like the story was told and it did leave the possibility for another book (which probably not happen).
3) Arbeenok. I really liked this character. For one thing, he was an interesting creature called an alaghi, which is a half ape, half human type creature. Then you have the interesting way he see the world and everything about him. Also, you don't get much information about him, causing him to be more mysterious and intriguing. Quite honestly, I don't know exactly why I like him. He just was different and unique.

Side Notes:
1) Acid. Quick question, what's the obsession with everything and everyone using acid? In each book of this trilogy, we have mages using some kind of acid spitting magic, snakes that spit it, and a giant worm that spits it. What's the deal?
2) Sea Elf. Oh, so there was a reason for a sea elf. Well, a good and bad reason for a sea elf.
3) Cover Art. It's just okay. I do like the use of greens, and the image of Arbeenok does draw your eye. I don't really care for the foggy background though. It just seems average.

Overall: 4/5
Final Thoughts:
The Emerald Scepter is slightly better than The Ruby Guardian. Why only slightly? Because The Emerald Scepter doesn't end on a cliffhanger like The Ruby Guardian did. The only problem I have with The Emerald Scepter is the unrealistic love relationships that Vambran and Emriana have. They are quite awkward and annoying. With that said, The Emerald Scepter was very enjoyable and fun. I do have to say that each book does go better than the previous one. Each installment improved on something that was missing from the last one and The Emerald Scepter really does do a nice job ending the trilogy. I'd definitely recommend picking up the trilogy at some point, it's worth the read.
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Triology of the Forgotten Realms Role Playing Book Series 10 Mar 2014
By Chris Aura - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
It has everything you what in a Sword and Sorcery Book and does not fall short. The previous 2 books leading to this third and last book are just as good. I'll be revisiting this trilogy a couple more times.
4.0 out of 5 stars I read a lot of books 5 Jan 2014
By zoe - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
Most of the Forgotten Realms or D&D books I read are the same in that they are fine and good for passing the time. I find it's necessary to know all the background info in order to understand the next book that comes out. It was good, but nothing really exciting.
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