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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Think of the Deadhouse Gates : Think on Death
Another epic escapade into the world of the Fallen.

This is no Tolkien vision of sweeping glades and smiling elder faces, this is a brooding, brutal and ultimately savage work of fantasy. Really, you can't help but love it.

The question that seems to lie at the heart of so many of the characters is: 'What is preferable, to fall so far that no...
Published on 28 May 2006 by ShadowCrab

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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Middle of the Road
Well, there's good and bad news here.

The good? Deadhouse Gates is certainly no less than a decent novel. The bad? It's only a decent novel and having waded through 2000 pages of the Malazan saga I'm still not convinced this is a series worth the enormous effort required to see it through to the end.

One feels that Erikson is simply grasping at too...
Published on 24 Oct 2010 by DRFP


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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Think of the Deadhouse Gates : Think on Death, 28 May 2006
By 
ShadowCrab (Durham, England.) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Deadhouse Gates (Book 2 of The Malazan Book of the Fallen) (Mass Market Paperback)
Another epic escapade into the world of the Fallen.

This is no Tolkien vision of sweeping glades and smiling elder faces, this is a brooding, brutal and ultimately savage work of fantasy. Really, you can't help but love it.

The question that seems to lie at the heart of so many of the characters is: 'What is preferable, to fall so far that no remnants of your other self are left or to have died innocent, unfallen.'

Battles are fought, wars are waged, yet no distinction is made between the foes. Both are fighting for noble values, both are "good" and yet both have the capacity for evil. Something I've never come across in a fantasy novel before & depending upon your take on originality, a brilliant concept.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars I hate to admit it but this is very good., 29 Sep 2011
This review is from: Deadhouse Gates (Book 2 of The Malazan Book of the Fallen) (Mass Market Paperback)
This book is intimidatingly massive (900 pages), requires about three times the amount of thinking required by normal ficition to fully digest its contents. It's also unrelentingly bleak, tragic and violent. But apart from that, it's a walk in the park!

A huge part of me wants to criticise this book and, indeed, the whole 'The Malazan Book of the Fallen' series. But, I have to be honest, this is mainly because this series has stretched me beyond any other literature I've ever read and I resent the fact that I'm not quite clever, patient or perceptive to grasp these books on one reading. I have to be objective and, objectively, this book is a masterpiece!

The illusion of realism that Erikson creates is second to none. He never interrupts the writing with cliched exposition and so the reader feels like a humble fly on the wall and not an intruder. Of course, this means the reader has actually got to think, to read between the lines and bare a certain amount of uncertainty but, if you are willing to take on this challenge, the rewards are great.

Also, the book is so crammed with detail, it's very very re-readable. It'll take a lifetime to figure out. Go on, take the plunge - it's deep water but there are pearls on the ocean bed!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars No easy get-outs for these characters!, 24 Mar 2002
This review is from: Deadhouse Gates (Book 2 of The Malazan Book of the Fallen) (Mass Market Paperback)
At last a fantasy novel with some teeth - or more preceisely teeth, swords lances and any other method of harming another individual. The characters are not all good or bad, shady deals are made which sometimes backfire.
Just because a character is a principle one don't expect them to make it to the end of the book - the war depicted in this novel is bloody and brutal.
My only complaint is that the chapters are a bit long causing me to stay awake into the wee small hours - not good for work in the morning, but you cant leave the characters in such a predicament now can you?
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This series just keeps getting better and better . . ., 15 Oct 2001
By 
Lillian Butler "Texas wireworker" (Austin, TX USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Deadhouse Gates (Book 2 of The Malazan Book of the Fallen) (Mass Market Paperback)
I discovered Erikson when a friend handed me his first book and said "You'll like him. He out-Black-Company's Glenn Cook." I devoured Gardens of The Moon in 3 days and waited until I could get the paperback of Deadhouse Gates. As in Gardens, Erikson weaves the stories of several compelling characters, including our old friends Crokus, Sorry, and Fiddler, as well as people only mentioned in passing from Gardens, like Captain Param's sisters . . . Unlike most military fantasy authors, Erikson understands that it's the characters that drive a story. And he spins a great one here.
I own 2 copies each of his books--one for me and one to lend. I just wish he was widely available here in the US.
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17 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Even Better Than the First Book, 7 Feb 2003
By 
A. Whitehead "Werthead" (Colchester, Essex United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Deadhouse Gates (Book 2 of The Malazan Book of the Fallen) (Mass Market Paperback)
The first book in this series, Gardens of the Moon, was a gloriously complex, action-packed romp of a novel, with a huge cast of entertaining, well-drawn characters and an absolute refusal to bown down to genre cliches or expectations. Book 2, Deadhouse Gates, continues many of these ideals in an admirable fashion. We're wrenched halfway around the world to the continent of Seven Cities, which is about to rise up against the Malazan Empire. A totally new cast is introduced, although a few minor players from Book 1 soon arrive to provide a bridge to the first book. There are three main plots developing in tandem: Felisin Paran's escape from slavery, General Coltaine's epic march across the continent and a plot to assassinate the Malazan Empress. The Coltaine storyline is the heart of the novel and is truly horrific at times, and the conclusion is truly gut-wrenching (the reader is as angry as the characters are at the heartless betrayal that ends the novel, and the poetic justice which rewards it is sweet). Deadhouse Gates is much darker and even more complex than the first book. It reads well as a stand-alone novel, though I recommend you read the first one as it's a slightly gentler introduction to the world. Book 2 is also clever in that many events take place simultaneously with Book 3, providing a link to that novel. Superb.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Shockingly brutal, 1 Dec 2005
This book might easily be the best work Erikson ever published. It definitely is his bloodiest. Throughout the book you ll find yourself on constant edge while the Malazan defenders are trying to achieve the impossible. It s been a while since i read the book but its brutality and horrific realism are not easy things to let go. Against impossible odds simple soldiers will become heroes through massive amounts of blood and gore. Erikson simply wont compromise. As usual there is more than this story in the book: one equally, if not more bloody. Extremely emotional and shocking any fantasy fan should read this. Its not everyday that this kind of books appear. It made me realise that Erikson is the future of Fantasy. Or at least he should be
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A very good book, 9 Jun 2001
By A Customer
Finally a sequel, in fantasy, which is as good as the first novel. My only disappointment in this book (which I soon overcame) is that the characters from the first book hardly feature in it. However I was enthralled by it and could not put it down. Enjoy.
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14 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An incredible sequel to the stunning Gardens of the Moon, 11 Sep 2000
By A Customer
Gardens of the Moon was one of the most refreshing, most gripping and most original fantasy novels I have read for years. There's always a slight sense of trepidation involved in starting a brilliant debut author's second novel - knowing that the first may have taken seven years to write and the second only seven months - but I am pleased, nay delighted to report that Deadhouse Gates is a totally worthy successor to Gardens, and indeed, even manages to surpass the first in many respects.
The plot (which I won't reveal), is even more complex, more multi-layered and possesses more plot twists and surprises than you'll find in a dozen run-of-the-mill stock-fantasy novels. If you thought the characters, situations and action in 'Gardens' were gripping in the extreme, you'll be glad to hear that exactly the same level of detail and strength of narrative have gone into making 'Deadhouse' just as good in terms of quality, adventure and drama.
All I'll say to finish with is that anyone who reads and enjoys the likes of David Gemmell or George R.R. Martin absolutely has to try both 'Gardens' and 'Deadhouse', or risk missing out on one of the most utterly enjoyable fantasy reading experiences currently available.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Caught up in the Whirlwind, 30 Dec 2012
This review is from: Deadhouse Gates (Book 2 of The Malazan Book of the Fallen) (Mass Market Paperback)
I started this book with some trepidation, as I wasn't particularly impressed with Gardens of the Moon, but as many reviews on here suggested the series improved as it went on I thought I would persevere.

Well, it's too early to speak to for the series as a whole, but I'm definitely glad I carried on and read Deadhouse Gates.

To start with, I thought my fears would be well founded, as the book is set on another continent, and introduces yet more characters, races and concepts. However, where GotM seemed to throw new characters and plot points into the mix every few pages, this book feels more focused.

The plot revolves around the revolution known as "The Whirlwind" taking place in the Seven Cities, as they rise up against the Malazan Empire. While there are still several interlinked stories going on against this background, the main thrust of the plot is the epic retreat of the Malazan armies and refugees led by the as-yet untried commander Coltaine.

This lends the book much more of a military and human feel than the previous book, with more focus on battles and tactics than on magic. This really felt like I was reading about an actual historical event, but without coming across dry in any way. And like a real event, the battles and the march are described with brutal and bloody realism, leading to a sickening but all too plausible conclusion.

When magic is used in this book, it seems to be done in a more "realistic" way than in the first. Perhaps this is because I am now more familiar with the concepts of the magic used in this series as more information is slowly dripped in by the author; I now have more understanding of what warrens, otataral and ascendants are!

The characters still aren't as well-drawn as I'd like, the dialogue can seem forced and clunky at times, and the few attempts at humour to lighten the mood don't always come off. However, this book did make me care in a way that the first one didn't, and had an ending that managed to be both moving and unsentimental.

Hopefully the rest of the series will get even better from here!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hundreds of pages of pure pleasure, 11 Jun 2011
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This review is from: Deadhouse Gates (Book 2 of The Malazan Book of the Fallen) (Mass Market Paperback)
Brilliant characters. Tons of unexpected moments and twists in the plot. Impossible to say which is good and bad side. No clear definition. The line is blurred.
Once again, the scope of the world is mind boggling.

9.5 /10
0.5 star off because too many details for each battle. Not the gore part but the actual technical details. I would settle for more general approach to the battles.
Otherwise fantastic book.
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Deadhouse Gates (Book 2 of The Malazan Book of the Fallen)
Deadhouse Gates (Book 2 of The Malazan Book of the Fallen) by Steven Erikson (Mass Market Paperback - 1 Oct 2001)
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