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The Sword of the Spirits: Sword of the Spirits Triology Paperback – 31 Oct 1989

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Paperback, 31 Oct 1989
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Product details

  • Paperback: 212 pages
  • Publisher: Prentice Hall & IBD; 2nd edition (31 Oct. 1989)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0020425740
  • ISBN-13: 978-0020425748
  • Product Dimensions: 1.9 x 10.2 x 17.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,034,406 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


In the conclusion to the trilogy set in post-apocalyptic England, Luke return triumphant Prince from his expedition in the North, although he loses the th things he cares about most.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Last in trilogy. Luke, now crowned prince of Winchester', seeks to demythologise the belief in spirits and reintroduce scientific advance. A fresh disaster cuts off all the enemy teritorritory so there need be no more war and civilisation can advance peacefully. He is not popular for this - he is too kind. The book ends with a hint that weapons are being designed and that the barriers between kingdoms will soon be broken down - so civilisation will, once more, advance to all-out war.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 13 reviews
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
no happy endings here 1 July 1999
By A Customer - Published on
Format: Paperback
This series is perhaps one of the darkest young adult sci-fi stories available. That is probably why it stands out so vividly in my memories from adolescence. At last having achieved Winchester's throne, Luke proceeds to unravel everything he has gained with his frustrating single-mindedness and stubborn pride. The ending so shocked me in its sadness and resignation that I can clearly recall rereading the final chapter over and over. This series, along with certain Robert Cormier novels, taught me that all stories do not end well, and in fact might be more resonant and thought-provoking if they don't. This one stays with you for quite a while.
12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
Dystopia 14 Nov. 2003
By M. Wise - Published on
Format: Hardcover
The Sword of the Spirits trilogy is definitely one of the most downer dystopia series ever written, especially for a young adult audience. The main character Luke has got to get an award for one of the most flawed protagonists of all time. The blood and death flows almost nonstop after the initial part of the book. A technological society was nearly brought to ruin and now only marginally survives, a superstitious husk of the humanity that once was.
Many people criticize the series for the infuriatingly pig-headed ending of it all. I think that's really one of the major points of the book. To think that so many people were killed, so many relationships were destroyed, and so many hopes shattered just so Luke could come to power -- and then he completely squanders it with his paranoia, his pride and his stubbornness in a final book that has got to be one of the most depressing tomes of all time. To think that everything that has been suffered is for naught is infuriating. We like to think (and many novelists do, as well) that suffering and strife will always bring some sort of redemption or good end, but this often simply is not the case. It's like Hamlet but with absolutely none of the nobility, purpose and honor. That's clear the author's point -- see the huge Hamlet reference in the final book.
This is the sort of series you want to shred after you finish reading it because it's just so anger-inducing. Not a classic, but it gets 5 stars for the impressions it's left on me.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Incredible 7 Dec. 2004
By Jeffrey Williams - Published on
Format: Paperback
The first time I read The Sword of the Spirits trilogy, I was maybe twelve. But it left a strong impression on me and I reread the series every couple of years.

Luke is a flawed character. He is unable to express his feelings to those he cares about, so he comes across as aloof and uncaring. For him, though, actions speak louder than words and loyalty and honor matter more than anything else. His devotion to Hans is a key example, even when that devotion can cost him personally and politically (i.e. when he elevates Hans to captain). At the same time, anyone who betrays his loyalty drives him to seek revenge, no matter the consequences. There are both Macbeth and Hamlet qualities about him.

I appreciate the stark language of the series, and how each one builds substantially off the one before it. Whoever was the editor did an excellent job, as these books contain little fat. Overall, I think this trilogy is a masterpiece and I would like to see it reprinted in the US. It stands head and shoulders above the Tripod trilogy.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Afraid to re-read this for 20+ years! 12 May 2011
By Keith B. Perry - Published on
Format: Paperback
Being a fan of the Tripod Trilogy, I bought the Sword of the Spirits box set well over 20 years ago and read it. I was so disturbed by it that ever since then the trilogy has moved with me 3 times, sitting on a bookshelf wherever I lived, and I had literally been afraid to re-read it even though I had only vague memories of what I found so disturbing. Anyway, I finally bit the bullet and just finished it again. It did not have quite the same effect on me, but was still incredibly powerful. I think that what is so thought provoking is that it is difficult to find fault with any particular thing that any character does throughout the trilogy. They are all motivated by things that are easily understandable, especially if you try to see the situation from their point of view. There is no "evil" character, and everyone seems to try to do the right thing, yet everything falls to pieces regardless and everyone suffers. The main character, Luke, is demonized by depression from the very beginning, yet always tries to do what is expected of him, and is fiercely (and often naively) loyal to friends and comrades. The author has an amazing way of capturing real human emotions with very few words. I am still quite disturbed... this trilogy is one that stays with you for a good while as you think and re-think it, but I believe that at 40 years old I am no longer actually afraid of it!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
One of the best post-apocalypse novels ever 19 Feb. 1999
By A Customer - Published on
Format: Turtleback
I've been looking for the Sword of the Spirits trilogy for years, and it still doesn't seem like I'm able to find it. If you do come across one or all three of the books in the series, don't hesitate to buy, because you're in for something really special. For my part, these books certainly changed the way I was and thought in a lot of ways.
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