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on 18 April 2013
I was spellbound....couldn't stop reading. Loved the variations of the different stories all linked to the main theme. Couldn't wait for book 2
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on 10 March 2016
Interesting series of books.
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on 12 November 2014
Enjoyed this book very much
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on 7 August 2014
I got all of the five available books to go on holiday with because they were cheap and because they sounded epic. They are all very long books but, to date, I've read the first three and I haven't been able to wait for the next one. The story (so far) is based across the whole of Eurasia and is such brilliantly adept story which mingles-in the machinations of the court of the mongols with the machinations of the Catholic church, with the exploits of Templar-like fighters. I've found the books truly interesting, well-written and well worth paying the full price for. Lucky me!!
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on 3 April 2013
I wondered when I started this whether I'd be able to get back into the characters and plot again after the last one, and it did prove difficult at first but once it all started to flow I got the familiar feeling of satisfaction of reading one of Neal Stephenson's longer novels. Without giving too much away, this continues the story from book two and I found both the character and plot development really satisfying. It's a long book, though, so I'd recommend a Kindle purchase to avoid having to heft around the no doubt weighty physical volume!
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VINE VOICEon 1 April 2013
Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
Anyone interested in the historical Mongolian empire should avoid this bilge. Anyone interested in good writing should also beat a hasty retreat. The Mongoliad is as true to the era of Ogodei Khan as Conan the Barbarian is to the age of Attila The Hun.

It's hideously bloated and poorly written, like a parody that someone forgot to make funny. The first two sentences give a taste of the laughable dialogue - "The Shield-Brethren buried Finn on the hill where they had set up camp. 'It is not as grand as one of those burial mounds--the kurgans--we have seen,' Raphael pointed out to Feronantus, 'but it has a view of where we came from, and the sun will always warm the ground.'" - and the thought of wading through another 800 pages of this nonsense made me want to give up there and then. Everyone talks in this mock-heroic, pompous patois except Frederick Hohenstaufen, who throws "goddamn" into every sentence. This is meant to make him sound down-to-earth but just makes him sound American, which is ridiculous for a 13th Century German emperor.

Reading the dialogue is like listening in on a teenage game of dungeons and dragons, and very long game at that. This is the third book in the series, which might explain why the characters spend so much time going over events of the previous books. The non-dialogue writing is better, but there doesn't seem to be any plot; just a parade of groups of characters who spend all their time thinking and talking and doing nothing.

And boy, does it go on. There are seven authors here, all writing with the same breathless adolescent portentousness. The urge to introduce unfamiliar words is never resisted, even when there is no need. For instance, we're told that Haakon has only just learned how to pronounce the Mongol capital Karakorum, though I'm stumped at how else it could be pronounced. Meanwhile, groups of characters wander around and chatter to each other or themselves, but however great the distances not one of them ever seems to stumble on a plot.

I'm sure the writers enjoyed themselves, but it's all very self-indulgent, like fan fiction for a book that nobody has bothered to write.
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on 28 March 2013
Deserves 5 stars for the best value series of novels I've read in a long time. Well edited and seamlessly consistent in tone, rarely betraying the fact that several minds are directing the plot, this book is the best of the three and kept me enthralled to the end. Almost tempted to read the overpriced short stories that they produce about their characters and their world, but only if the price drops! Will definitely read the next full length novel.
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on 16 April 2013
Very strong on martial arts, action and the excitement builds well, particularly in Volume 3, but there's just a bit too much blood, guts and internal human anatomy per paragraph at the end, for my taste anyway.

As a UK reader with a degree-level understanding of medieval history and modern foreign languages, I have two observations. Using undiluted am
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on 21 February 2015
a good read
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on 28 January 2015
A good read.
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