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21 of 21 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable sequel to the first book.
This is the second book in the Crossroads series, and the middle volume of the first story arc, reportedly a trilogy (preceded by Spirit Gate, which I reviewed here, and to be succeeded by Traitor's Gate, due in 2009).

In Spirit Gate, a number of outlanders arrived in the Hundred to find the land beset by troubles. Armies of vagabonds and cutthroats have...
Published on 3 May 2008 by A. Whitehead

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars pretty good
Good book continuing on from spirit gate, a little long winded but worth a read for any fantasy lovers.
Published on 12 Jan 2010 by G. C. Pavey


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21 of 21 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable sequel to the first book., 3 May 2008
By 
A. Whitehead "Werthead" (Colchester, Essex United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This is the second book in the Crossroads series, and the middle volume of the first story arc, reportedly a trilogy (preceded by Spirit Gate, which I reviewed here, and to be succeeded by Traitor's Gate, due in 2009).

In Spirit Gate, a number of outlanders arrived in the Hundred to find the land beset by troubles. Armies of vagabonds and cutthroats have appeared out of nowhere to challenge the justice of the reeves, the giant eagle-riding police force who have ensured the rule of law in the land since the disappearance of the Guardians many decades earlier. The outlanders, led by Captain Anji and his wife Mai, joined forces with Reeve Joss and the militia of the city of Olossi to defeat one of these roving armies and build a safehaven in the south-west of the Hundred. However, all are troubled by rumours of beings wielding supernatural powers and riding winged horses - as the Guardians were said to have done - apparently leading the invading armies.

Shadow Gate is a worthwhile and enjoyable follow-up to the first book, mostly because it works on two levels. On the one hand, it is a direct sequel, following up on the adventures of Joss, Mai, Anji, Shai and others following the Battle of Olossi. On the other, it is also parallel novel to the first, explaining a great deal of the mysteries in the first volume. One of the key weaknesses in the first book, I felt, was that the nature of the winged horse-riding beings and some storylines, most notably that revolving around the wandering envoy-priest and the bizarre antics of the slave Cornflower, were decidedly under-developed, to the point where their inclusion seemed to be extremely confusing. In this second volume you get the answers to those questions, told in an accessible and intriguing manner. Any thoughts that this was going to be a simple good-versus-evil struggle go out the window as we learn more of the nature of the Guardians, the rules they operated under and some explanations as to why they disappeared (although the full story, I suspect, will have to wait until Book 3).

At the same time, we get to meet some new characters, such as Nallo, the refugee who is chosen to become a reeve but whose training is complicated when the main reeve base comes under siege, and Avisha, a simple village girl who attracts Mai's favour and has to sort out a complicated love life as well as caring for her family. The new additions to the cast generally give us new and interesting outlooks on the world and the plot, and don't slow the story down too much. The pacing is also good, but arguably the conclusion is not as strong as it might be. Just as the Battle of Olossi seemed to happen very quickly at the end of Book 1, so the two big set-piece battles at the end of Book 2 also get short shrift, but arguably this is less important this time around as revelations about characters and several dramatic scenes between major characters form the meat of the finale, which does a better job of leaving the reader wanting to pick up the next volume straight away.

Spirit Gate (****) is a notably superior book to the first one, and actually makes the first one more enjoyable as well (a full re-read of the first book after the series is completed will pay unexpected dividends, I suspect).
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Better than original, 7 July 2008
By 
Gareth Wilson - Falcata Times Blog "Falcata T... - See all my reviews
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Whilst this is the second book in the series I have to say that personally I felt it beat the socks off the previous novel and wondered if this would have been better if it had been reworked as the original tale. The characters are excellent and continue to develop which makes them more realistic and new ones enter the tale which keeps this as an ideal read. A great book and I really can't wait for the next instalment.
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5.0 out of 5 stars good read, 21 April 2014
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really enjoyed this book, a very good read, could not put it down, ended to quickly, as I read a lot.
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5.0 out of 5 stars excellent sequel, 16 Mar 2014
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This review is from: Shadow Gate: Book Two of Crossroads (Kindle Edition)
Interesting plot development, and I'm very curious to see where Elliott takes us next.

There were some predictable things that she totally avoided, which was a pleasant surprise, and I'm really enjoying seeing various characters through different eyes - creating a many layered effect.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Crossroads Series, 15 Feb 2014
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This review is from: Shadow Gate: Book Two of Crossroads (Kindle Edition)
Another great book in the series, it is blood thirsty at times but Kate Elliott has me hooked, can not wait for the next book in the series
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5.0 out of 5 stars Love it., 16 Aug 2013
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Her books are just awesome and this completed the trilogy. I'm looking now to see if she is on Kindle books.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable, 6 April 2013
This review is from: Shadow Gate: Book Two of Crossroads (Kindle Edition)
This is an absorbing continuation in Crossroads trilogy and well worth reading. As usual Kate Elliott has managed to craft a storyline that is well written with numerous strands that intertwine; even the subsidiary players in this story are well characterised. I cannot wait to find out what happens to all the major characters and how their interwoven stories will end to the readers' satisfaction.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Shadow Gate : Book 2 of Crossroads, 6 Mar 2013
By 
Mrs. M. A. Harmsworth "Book Mad Maggie" (Chessington Surrey) - See all my reviews
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Very good book, really good condition, and arrived well within the stated delivery time.

Kate Elliott is still writing very good fantasy books, and the story continues without any joins. The previous story is revealed as and when required to keep continuity of the plots. I always get a lot of enjoyment from her books, and hope she keeps on writing about Seregil and Alec forever! Also, as they live for 100's of years, that could get difficult!
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5.0 out of 5 stars As good as the first book, 23 Jan 2013
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This review is from: Shadow Gate: Book Two of Crossroads (Kindle Edition)
This continues the brilliant and sometimes convoluted tale of "The Hundred" with all its troubles.

Excellent read each time I revisit
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4.0 out of 5 stars Part 2, 20 Jun 2012
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C. Burrows (london) - See all my reviews
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The second part of the trilogy expands the story further and introduces new characters. Like so many such series, the denouement in the third book will define the overall impression
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