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Customer Review

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars More Questions Than Answers, 5 Feb. 2012
This review is from: Orb Sceptre Throne (Malazan Empire 4) (Hardcover)
Like all Esslemont's books this is an enjoyable read. While Erikson is off battling to save the world in Kolanse, Esslemont lets us in on what's been happening with some of our favourite characters back in Darujhistan.
Kruppe, Caladan Brood, Vorcan, Barak, Coll, the Nom brothers and a few others from Erikson's books all make an appearance. We find out more about the Seguleh and the Moranth. The remaining Bridgeburners; Picker, Blend, Spindle and Duiker are all involved and Antsy travels to the remains of Moon's Spawn to find fame and fortune and makes some new friends on the way. What seemed a pointless story arc in Stoneweilder, Kiska's search for Tayschrenn, is resolved here and everyone's favourite necromancers make a cameo appearance. Yay!
So why the slightly sarcastic tone?
Well, while this is an entertaining book and I certainly enjoyed reading about all of the above, I'm left wondering what the hell is going on?
What are Esselmont's books? Are they just appendices to the Malazan Book of the Fallen, a bit of background information about characters, events and places alluded to in the series, or do they form their own series that weaves in and around Erikson's main story? The answer would seem to be both but falls just short of completely satisfying either.
Not that I'm surprised. I mean, the poor guy has to give us information about all the things we wanna know about; the Emperor, the Crimson Guard, Korelri, the Stormriders, the Seguleh, the Moranth, the Wickans, Assail, etc. He also has to tell us about the characters in the MBOTF that no longer play in a part in that storyline; Lasseen, Mallick Rell, Kruppe, Tayschrenn, Topper, Traveller, Cartheron and Urko Crust, etc. Add to this all the new characters and storylines introduced while telling these stories; Kiska, Kyle, Orchid, the Second, The Blessed Lady, Ivnar, etc. And all this has to be tied in so it corresponds to events in MBOTF and also has to be presented in the style and (high) standard we've come to expect from a Malazan book.
Whew! Glad I'm not in his shoes.
If you're a Malazan fan, you will enjoy this. I am and I did. But it does leave you with a lot more questions than before. As Esslemont only has a further 2 books to go in his Malazan Empire series, you are left wondering, can he pull it off?
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