Stormrider: (The Rigante Book 4) Paperback – 1 Apr 2003
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In Stormrider David Gemmell yet again demonstrates the passion for storytelling and the heroic which makes his best books so very much better than his sometimes clunky individual sentences might indicate.
Driven back to the barren hills of their homeland, the Rigante clansmen whose ancient ways have dominated Gemmell's series named for them are the natural world's last resource against crusaders, whose corrupt magic would destroy everything. Yet the crucial hero of the struggle is not the Rigante chieftain Kaelin, but Gaise, the dashing cavalryman son of the Rigante's worst enemy, the Moidart.
Gemmell is fascinated by what makes good men do evil--Gaise becomes hideously ruthless in his pursuit of a righteous war--and also by what makes evil men do good; faced with an ultimate evil that regards him as a personal enemy, the Moidart is forced not only onto the side of Good, but also to an understanding of what he really wants.
Gemmell is fond of the brutal and of the sentimental, but there is an underlying integrity to his work that comes from a real belief in the importance of what he is saying; his work is sometimes ponderous and pretentious, but never trivial. --Roz Kaveney --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)See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
If you're a fan of David's writing then further analysis is unecessary. If you're a naysayer, then this book will offer no new element to change your opinion of the grand old man of english fantasy.
David Gemmell is one of the handful of authors whose books I have kept on my shelves and re-read over and again ranking with Roger Taylor, Raymond Feist and the like.
Stormrider is the final volume of the Rigante series carries on from Ravenheart and brings the saga to a strong conclusion.
David Gemmell was one of the finest adult epic fantasy writers of the last few decades and leaves a vacuum in a genre which produces fewer and fewer real aficionados every year.
Set in the days of pistols and muskets fans of TV series Sharpe will recognise the change in the pitch of battle compared to Gemmell's previous hack and slash battles.
The book revives a darker side to Gemmels heroes who while being men of principle and honour are capable of darker deeds than the blackest villain.
While the last book focused on Kaelin Ring and his indominatble uncle Jaim Grymach this story focuses on the Storm rider Gaise Macon, son of the evil Moidart. Gemmell twists and turns his charecters with rare skill making the evil Moidart a hero and the Valiant Gaise an atrocious killer.
Stormrider while typical Gemmel fare is an amazingly well thought out and thought provoking book, the points he makes on good and evil, on heroes and cowards are intuitive and inspiring.
A brilliant book and a brilliant read, I picked this up and didn't stop reading it until I was finished.
Much of the first half of the book concentrates on relationships and conflicts, and this is where the book is at its best. Gemmell was a master of characterisation, and had a marvellously subtle way of filling in backstory without resorting to page after page of exposition. He does that here with aplomb, and also introduces some new characters, such as the Cochland brothers, who bring a welcome bit of levity to proceedings.
However, in the latter stages of the book (and this is a long book by Gemmell's standards, at 600 pages), as the war commences, he seems to lose his way a little. There is very little in the way of the emotional punch that he usually weaved throughout his stories, and certainly nothing to match the ending of the previous book. In fact, I'm not sure I liked the ending of Stormrider, as it seems to rely on a somewhat deus ex machina conclusion which doesn't sit well with the rest of the tale, and certainly doesn't reflect the path the previous three books have taken to get here.Read more ›
The characters in the book also lack the emotional qualities we have seen before from Gemmell. Kaelin Ring, the main character from forbear Ravenheart, simply disappears toward the end of the novel while Stormtrider himself is entirely unsympathetic. Winter Kay (the bad guy) is also one dimensional and we can see his downfall and reasons for it almost on the first occasion we meet him.
Overall, while not up to his usual standard, Gemmell's skill as a storyteller saves the day and maintains interest until the end. I am a huge fan of Gemmell and have read all of his books, if you are new to him this is not one that I would recommend as a starting point because it could sway you from one of his many genuine classics such a Lion of Macedon, Legend or Waylander.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I waited a decade to read this, the last Gemmell novel I hadn't read. When the series was originally released I was put off by the parallels to Celtic mythology and the Scottish... Read morePublished 21 days ago by Steven Savile
Read these years ago and gave them to our local library before moving to Cyprus. Want to read them again.Published 5 months ago by Jaycee
Another cracking yarn. Great read from one of the best writers around.Published 7 months ago by Ianw
Love love love David Gemmell and EVERYTHING he has written. The Rigante series is by far my favourite (although I'd probably say the same for most of the others! Read morePublished 10 months ago by kimberley
His wife is writing books as good, which is something to look forward too.Published 10 months ago by Amazon Customer