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on 9 April 2013
"Dragon Age: The Stolen Throne" is an enjoyable fantasy book, both for fans of the videogame and genre fans. The book is a great window into the whole universe Bioware created for its magnificent game and a wonderful adventure. It might be a bit light on plot as the story mostly deals with Maric, the main character, trying to win back the throne of Ferelden his grandfather lost to a foreign invader, the Orlesians, with the help of his future queen and his best friend, Loghain. Loghain is of course a pivotal character in the game, although his appearances are actually brief if you really consider it, so its great to get a chance to see more of him and his personality and how he evolved into the character we meet in the game. The book is divided between huge, well written, exciting battles and a sort of "unspoken" romantic triangle between the main characters. The romance does take up lots of pages and although interesting it can turn a bit tiresome and that is especially problematic towards the end of the book. The ending is as rushed as can be, going as far as skipping the last battle and even the final fight between Maric and the "usurper". All of this is recounted in the last page of the book. No, i'm serious! Yeah...
The villains are also badly developed with barely any scenes and even the plot and the three main characters take a turn for the worse by the last pages, taking actions and changing in a way that seems only for plot sake and not true to their nature. Loghain and Maric are very likable characters as is Rowan, the daughter of an Arl promised to Maric to be his future queen. You go on this journey with them and see them battle and bond between them and with you as the reader but suddenly they seem different characters. Suddenly they are not likable at all, especially Maric and just like that the book ends and it leaves you a bit bitter and sad.
Lots of important events are narrated in only a paragraph and the story just rushes to the finish line in a hurry. The feeling is that this is only half the book and in the end we have to consider that maybe the author should have spent less time in some of the earlier amorous developments and saved some pages for the epic climax the book is sorely missing.
The book is also heavy on the "Tolkien" tropes, as was the game to be honest but I suppose that's also to be expected.
For fans of the videogame this is a treat with a trip to the deep roads, the "Legion of the Dead", a visit to Flemeth and of course Loghain. For non fans, this is still a well written, fun adventure although with some serious problems in pacing and closure.
I guess Bioware just have a real problem when it comes to endings!!!!
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on 4 December 2015
I'm a big Dragon Age fan, having played all the games and hoovered up all the lore in those games. This book is well written and fairly rushes along. Other reviewers have covered the story in depth, so I won't.

Some of the banter is reminiscent of the great dialogue between Morrigan and Alistair in Dragon Age: Origins and it's obvious that David Gaider was responsible for a lot of the in-party wit in that game.

I have a couple of gripes though, and it's enough to knock a star off. Firstly, Maric suffers many, many injuries, which are shrugged off after a few pages and because of this seeming invincibility, removes a lot of the peril. Secondly, I ran across maybe a dozen typos, which I found really jarring in a book that was not self-published and presumably had enough money to hire an editor.

Overall, a good book marred by a couple of minor blemishes.
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on 8 January 2013
Dragon Age: The Stolen Throne is a must read for hardcore Dragon Age videogame fans. It explains some interesting facts about King Maric, Alistair's father, and Loghain who happens to be the great villain in the first of Dragon Age games.
What mostly fascinated me was the strong and strategic mind of Loghain. Without him, Maric would not have achieved his throne back. Loghain is my favourite character in this book and I came to understand that he does not tolerate a leader that is feeble and weak and that his duty and loyalty is not for King Maric or King Cailan but for Ferelden only and that is why he committed the actions he did in the game.
When I decided to read this book, I wanted to find answers about the origin of Alistair, but here you won't find it. I did, however, got a pleasant surprise to see a lot of him in Maric's personality. How he was a weak and unprepared man to a successful warrior and decisive man in order to reclaim his throne. The same could be seen in Alistair during the game. I won't spoil for anybody.
It was a pleasant read and I actually was addicted and could not stop reading. It is a page turner.
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on 14 September 2011
This summer I tried expanding the satisfying experience I have had with computer Role-Playing games with related fantasy novels. It worked greatly with The Witcher as two of the books that game was based upon (The Last Wish &Blood of Elves) were also excellent reads. With Dragon Age: Origins, however, I found the game to be must better than the spin-off books.

The STOLEN THRONE starts abruptly, placing you in the boots of the fleeing prince Maric, running away from a treasonous ambush that threatens to extinguish his bloodline's claims to the Ferelden throne. From one tense moment to the next, the urgency to avoid eminent defeat never seems to let go - and neither does Maric's luck. But it is not just rhythm problems this book has.

The writing is unpolished, mechanical and often juvenile, whereas the plot strains the limits of one's suspension of disbelief. And for a fantasy novel, complete with spell-casting magi and flying dragons, that is no small feat.

What is worse, the writer seems to have struggled to tame the story and fit it under the events set by the game. It almost worked with King Maric, mostly because his role in the game is so short. It totally failed with Loghain though. I do no wish to spoil it for anyone so let's just say, those who have completed the cRPG will find this novelized Loghain barely recognizable.

I am a huge fan of DRAGON AGE: ORIGINS and that is the only reason I rounded my rating up rather than down.
This is a book addressed mostly towards fans of the original game.
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on 5 September 2016
If you're a huge fan of the Dragon Age universe then you really should read these books. I'm the type of player who reads every codex in the game so to get such delightful insights into other characters, eras and events is wonderful!
Maric is a wonderfully written character (you can definitely see Alistair's personality in them and I have a whole new appreciation for Loghein. Rowan is brilliantly written and I wished that her tale would be different despite already knowing the outcome from the games codex.

100% recommended.
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on 13 June 2016
I am a massive fan of the dragon age series and found this book informative to learning more about King Cailan and Loghain. I did find it a bit dry at times but there is plenty of ups and downs and the overall transformation of prince to king is subtle but clever. I have already bought the other books and will be moving on to the next in the series.

If you like the dragon age videogames I would defiantly recommend reading this.
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on 2 March 2013
I first came across the Dragon Age franchise in the form of Dragon Age: Origins, the video game on Xbox 360. What immediately struck me was how mature of a storyline the game held, it wasn't for children and it was a realistic tale told in a frontal assault on your mind as you played. So when I was browsing one evening on Amazon I came across the tie-in novels of the franchise, written by David Gaider who was lead writer of the video game. Instinctively I checked the reviews of those who bought the book first, and it struck me most of the buyers were fans of the video game.

Going by a few reviews that said the book was very well written, and was perfect for any fan of the game I bought all three novels from Gaider; (1) The Stolen Throne, (2) The Calling and (3) Asunder. The moment it arrived I jumped into the first book, The Stolen Throne. I immediately knew most of the characters from references in the game, and knew that this was a prequel to the game set about twenty years or more before the events of the video game Origins.

I was immediately intrigued to learn about events leading up to the video game, and I was thoroughly enthralled from start to finish. In fact I took the book everywhere with me in order to continue to read it, both at work and at home. I couldn't put it down, as locations and lore of the game were explored and expanded on. I have to admit that this series of novels is really for fans of the game, mainly to understand the setting and some of the characters you have to know of them beforehand. Very well written, not too long nor too short. I didn't feel cheated for the price I paid, which I found reasonable on the site and I would recommend this book to fans of the Dragon Age franchise.
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on 11 August 2013
As a big fan of the Dragon Age games, this book provided nice context to a lot of the events in Origins, especially Loghain's history and how this influences his actions during the Blight. A few of the events were not so much foreshadowed as fore-neon-signed, but when the plot actually got there Gaider still managed to throw in a few surprises. Being a prequel, the ending was a foregone conclusion but the storyline, along with the vague information in DAO, managed to maintain suspense and worry for the characters up until the end.

In terms of writing the action scenes were not brilliant but the characters, which are what Gaider writes for the games, were very well done.

I'm not sure I would describe it as essential as the marketing does, but I would definitely recommend this to any fans of the Dragon Age games and vice versa.
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on 3 June 2016
You know what, it ain't bad.

Love the Dragon Age series and I suppose my only problem with this book was the typical DA humour which plays out so well on screen and in game felt a little forced into the written word. Once I got used to Gaider's silliness (sorry, Gaider; Terry Pratchett is the king of silly and I've been spoilt and ruined forever) it become a really nice read. I wasn't challenged or overly moved but I felt like a good story was wrapped up nicely and I was ready to go onto the next.
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on 19 May 2011
This book was good because it told the story of the rise of King Maric, son of the Rebel Queen. In the story we meet the young Loghain, the mysterious elf Katriel and Maric's betrothed from childhood Rowan. These people are thrown together and experience an adventure amid the conflict of civil war in Ferelden. The story is great, filled with battle, blood and romance, a stimulating read if you haven't read in a while.

We meet the mysterious and rotten to the core darkspawn who populate the dark and dangerous Dwarven deep roads, underground passages lined with dilapidated dwarven architecture and giant vicious spider creatures with oozing mandibles. A Chasind witch named Flemeth also features and mysterious magic is everywhere. Loghain is given the task of escorting the young Maric to safety after he runs away from the soldiers who murdered his mother.

Maric is young and sheltered at the beginning of the story but soon becomes stronger and more powerful as he finds allies and trains to bring together the scattered rebel army, in order to topple the Orlaisian usurper who currently holds the throne of Ferelden in his tyrannical grip.
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