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White Wolf (Skilgannon the Damned 1) [Paperback]

David Gemmell
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (64 customer reviews)
RRP: 7.99
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Book Description

1 April 2004 Skilgannon the Damned 1

Skilgannon the Damned had vanished from the pages of history. Following the terrible triumph at Perapolis, the General had taken the legendary Swords of Night and Day and ridden from the lands of Naashan. No-one knew where he had gone, and the assassins sent by the Witch Queen could find no trace of his passing.

Three years later, as a mob intent on murder gathers outside a distant monastery, they are faced by a single unarmed priest. In a few terrifying seconds their world is changed for ever, and word spreads across the lands of the East.

Skilgannon is back.

Now he must travel across a perilous, demon-haunted realm seeking a mysterious temple, and the ageless goddess who rules it. With assassins on his trail, and an army of murderous foes ahead, the Damned sets off on a quest to bring the dead to life. But he does not travel alone.

The man beside him is Druss the Legend.

In a world torn by war, White Wolf is a page-turning tale of love, betrayal and treachery, which examines the nature of heroism and friendship and the narrow lines that divide good from evil, redemption from damnation.

Frequently Bought Together

White Wolf (Skilgannon the Damned 1) + The Swords Of Night And Day (Skilgannon the Damned 2) + Hero in the Shadows (Waylander)
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Product details

  • Paperback: 592 pages
  • Publisher: Corgi; New Ed edition (1 April 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0552146773
  • ISBN-13: 978-0552146777
  • Product Dimensions: 10.4 x 17.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (64 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 110,218 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Published in 1984, David A. Gemmell's first novel, Legend, has become a classic. His most recent Drenai and Rigante books are all published as Bantam Press hardcovers and Corgi paperbacks. All of his novels are Sunday Times bestsellers. Now widely regarded as one of the finest writers of heroic fantasy, David Gemmell lived in East Sussex until his death in July 2006.

Product Description

Amazon Review

David Gemmell is Britain's most popular writer of hard-edged heroic fantasy. White Wolf opens a new subseries, "The Damned", set in the world of his Drenai saga and featuring the invincible axeman Druss the Legend--now well into middle age. But the central character is Skilgannon the Damned, deadly wielder of a very special pair of swords and a former general whose nickname comes from a war atrocity that he does not deny. His attempt to make a new life as a monk ends abruptly when civil unrest threatens the monastery and Skilgannon's old fighting skills come into play with appalling effectiveness. In flashbacks to decades earlier, a young Skilgannon painfully and plausibly learns the warrior's art, until his boyhood finishes in a blaze of horror. He finds true love, but his lady is also in love with power and gives the orders for a city-wide bloodbath that makes him forever The Damned. Now known as the Witch-Queen, she won't forgive him for leaving her...

Other stories intertwine with Skilgannon's. There's a young lad who wants to be a swordsman; a fey girl haunted by voices; twin brother fighters, one with a personality ravaged by brain cancer; and Druss the Legend, still indomitable but beginning to worry about his heart. Their paths entwine in a land full of disorder, hostile troops, desperate refugees, and escaped arena beasts (sorcerous hybrids of man and animal). Gemmell excels at combat scenes, with a pace, timing and gripping conviction rare in the genre. He makes it clear, with grim compassion, that opponents aren't just straw men to be knocked over. Skilgannon is forced to kill people he admires, or who admire him; even legitimate self-defence turns sour when we hear the version told by the dead man's fiancée. At the climax, Skilgannon, Druss and their surviving companions stage an audacious assault on a particularly obnoxious villain's well-defended fortress. Much bloodshed follows, with satisfactory settlement of many debts and a final gleam of hope for the future. More tales of Skilgannon will surely follow. --David Langford --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


"'Gemmell is a fireside mythmonger; his characters and plots have the authentic feel of legends handed down through the ages'" (SFX)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars White Wolf 18 April 2003
For David Gemmell addicts – finally, a new book! White Wolf introduces a new character to the Drenai series named Skilgannon. Throughout the novel, Gemmell uses the quest for atonement to really create character. Skilgannon was a general for the Witch Queen (whom he loves) but left her service after his wife died (who loved him) and Jianna (the Witch Queen) ordered him to slaughter the inhabitants of a city, earning him the title the Damned. Basically, after failing as a monk he goes looking for a special temple to resurrect his wife. On his way he ends up with Druss the Legend (naturally) who is looking for a friend of his who has disappeared. I don’t want to ruin the rest of the story so you will have to find out the rest on your own. Gemmell has a brilliant writing style, making reading his books terribly addictive. White Wolf is a book charged with excitement and humour – definitely a good read!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Compelling Gemmell 6 July 2006
I thought this is one of David Gemmells best novels. The main character is Skillgannon the Damned, a character that really captured my imagination.
Not only is it great heroic fantasy, but funny in parts. It also includes Druss the Legend, probably Gemmells best known character, and it is set ten years before 'Legend', Gemmell's first novel.
A very good read.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Still Good 3 Jun 2006
Yes, Druss is back!. The book as a whole is good but does stick very much to the classic Gemmell formula. Not that there is anything wrong with that. The book is well and solidly written but nothing spectacular. Anyone who is a Gemmell fan will find this an enjoyable read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Another quality anti-hero tale 13 Nov 2008
By Mr. G. Battle VINE VOICE
Readers of previous Drenai tales will love this entry, for it takes characters and history from each novel and creates an "best-of" story. It features a party like no other, each member drawing on strands from previous novels, even though this is a standalone entry in to the Drenai mythos (another Damned novel follows). At first the introduction of Druss to the party feels like a cash-cow approach, but Gemmell utilised Druss to draw out the complexity of his new character, Skilgannon, a renegade soldier who wishes to turn his back on the past, yet is emotionally tied to it. It's a complex, and initially wordy story, with fleshed out characters and plot twists and events that create a real page-turner. Enjoyable until the end, White Wolf is a quality fantasy read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Brother Lantern is a priest seeking inner peace in an increasingly hostile and unsettled world. Conflict surrounds the priesthood, and now the priests themselves are being targeted by forces intent on causing chaos. As the priests come face to face with violence, Brother Lantern's adherence to their peaceful ways is severely tested as more priests get attacked and all he is meant to do is forgive the attackers and try and find good in them. Then when a violent mob come to the gates of the priest's monastery, Brother Lantern decides he can no longer follow the path of the priesthood, and reluctantly reverts back to his warrior ways, ruthlessly teaching the mob a lesson they'll never forget. For Brother Lantern is no ordinary priest, he is Skilgannon the Damned, mighty warrior, wielder of the swords of night and day, and a tormented soul haunted by the guilt of horrific acts of barbarism that he committed in the name of the Witch Queen.

This is another thrilling book from David Gemmell, full of wonderful characterisation whereby every character has something to contribute to this compelling story. Skilgannon is the tortured soul, deeply ashamed of the acts he has committed in the name of war, desperately seeking some kind redemption for his past, but knowing deep down than nothing can undo what he has done. Nonetheless you can't help hoping that Skilgannon finds some kind of salvation as you realise that he's very much been used as a pawn by the Witch Queen, driven by his loyalty and, even more, his intense love for her, as they were former lovers before she rose to power.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars You want Action? You came to the right place. 21 Mar 2007
Both Skilagon and Druss show how real heroes are supposed to fight. Druss's Axe cleaves though many men as do Skilagon's swords. The story line has lots of twists and new problems that arrive. As always he brings you and keeps you into an interesting and exciteing story line where you want to read so fast you'd almost rip the pages out when turning them.


Even back tracking and talking about Skilagon's past when he was just the child of a hero known as Fire Fist. In no way is this boreing however. It explains in detail of his life and even tells of his meeting with the current queen of the land he came from and the horrific things he witnessed when he became recognised as a traitor.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Just keeps getting better 24 Jan 2004
At the moment this man can do no wrong. His books just keep getting better. Many other fantasy authors who continually set their books in the same place also seem to be incapable of changing their characters (No names mentioned!). Gemmel keeps introducing new characters and also filling us in on old friends aswell. He manages to interlink the characters stories and lives seemlessly and leaves us in no doubt that there is still more to come. This book is a fantastic addition to any Gemmel collection or for a first time reader.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Gemmel is great
along with all of David Gemmells works very entertaining. Keeps your attention from the time you start reading until you put the book down
Published 2 months ago by J.Glanville
5.0 out of 5 stars the best
this is the best book in my opinion david gemmell wrote . the author is simply the best with his fiction, swords of night and day is a must if you like this alomg with all gemmells... Read more
Published 4 months ago by Steven K. Evans
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic Gemmel. Great story.
All in the title. Read this book if you like a great story. You will stay up to finish this.
Published 8 months ago by A. Sohanpal
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant
I have now read this book 3 times, and I think if asked what my favourite book is, this would be it. Read more
Published 8 months ago by leph
5.0 out of 5 stars Great books
Great books - if you liked the rigante series you will like this, same gripping writing that keeps you coming back for more. Read more
Published 8 months ago by Domzo
5.0 out of 5 stars Best book ever
This is the book that showed me what fun reading can be. Of course, Gemmell's amazing pace, descriptions, characters and writing style are all present here. Read more
Published 9 months ago by Neil
4.0 out of 5 stars David Gemmell always warrants rereading
I've always enjoyed David's Drenai books and this one was no exception, even though it is a reread. It has one of the least flawed of his heroes, who still ends up doing stuff for... Read more
Published 9 months ago by I. Fenton
5.0 out of 5 stars Paul, Barton, Lincs
First class plot, well crafted and flowed, which is what you'd expect from a first class writer. I would encourage anyone to give any of his stories a go....
Published 12 months ago by Paul Wilton
5.0 out of 5 stars Another winner
Great new character, enjoyed book immensely. Good paced read keeps you glued, if fnatasy or heroic fantasy is your thing, look no further
Published 13 months ago by DCM
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply a great author
The saddest thing is that Gemmell will never write more. Another great novel, with characters you can see and believe. Read more
Published 18 months ago by kevin boyd
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