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Stonewielder [Mass Market Paperback]

Ian C. Esslemont
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Dec 12 2011
A breathtaking addition to the history of Malaz -- the new epic fantasy from the co-creator of this extraordinary imagined world.

Greymane believed he'd outrun his past. With his school for swordsmanship in Falar, he was looking forward to a quiet life, although his colleague Kyle wasn't as enamoured with things outside the mercenary company, the Crimson Guard.

However, it seems it is not so easy for an ex-Fist of the Malazan Empire to disappear, especially one under sentence of death from that same Empire. For there is a new Emperor on the throne of Malaz, and he is dwelling on the ignominy that is the Empire's failed invasion of the Korel subcontinent. In the vaults beneath Unta, the Imperial capital, lie the answers to that disaster. And out of this buried history surfaces the name Stonewielder.

In Korel, Lord Protector Hiam, commander of the Stormguard, faces the potential annihilation of all that he holds dear. With few remaining men and a crumbling stone wall that has seen better days, he confronts an ancient enemy: the sea-borne Stormriders have returned. Religious war also threatens these lands. The cult of the Blessed Lady, which had stood firm against the Riders for millennia, now seeks to eradicate its rivals. And as chaos looms, a local magistrate investigating a series of murders suddenly finds himself at the heart of a far more ancient and terrifying crime -- one that has tainted an entire land.

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"Epic fiction at its finest."
--Seattle Post Intelligencer
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Born in Winnipeg, IAN C. ESSLEMONT is an archaeologist and has travelled extensively in South East Asia and Japan. He now lives in Alaska with his wife and three sons and is completing a Ph.D. in English Literature as well as writing further novels set in the world of Malaz, a world he co-created with his friend Steven Erikson.

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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
By R. Nicholson TOP 500 REVIEWER
"Stonewielder" is the latest edition of extra Malazan books from Ian C. Esslemont. This book is 720 pages in length and the Kindle version is a 1264 Kb download.


The book follows several groups of individuals in the telling of two main tales...

1.) A Malazan force returns to the remote island grouping of 'Fist' where a previous attempt of conquest by the Malazan empire many, many years ago resulted in only partial success. However, after being seemingly forgotten, the surviving members of that first Malazan group have gone rogue and have decided to rule the land they occupy, independent of the mother country. This 'attitude' of course cannot, under any circumstances, be allowed to go on unchecked.

2.) In addition, the natural inhabitants of this multiple island grouping have some serious problems of their own (apart from the left-over initial Malazan faction). An alien group of sea-creatures have been attempting to invade the land for several millennium. These attempts have been thwarted by the erection of a towering sea wall built along leagues of shoreline on the northern most coast. But problems are occurring with the wall, for it appears to be rapidly deteriorating and this is due to two main reasons; the repeated freezing and thawing of seawater in cracks has become more frequent and more severe every year and also because the large number of personnel required to maintain and repair this long wall, has fallen significantly of recent times.


The tale has some interesting people, great battles on land, sea and even in some subterranean areas. There are magical items and persons in this fantasy adventure. And importantly to me, the story is generally believable within the context of its genre.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars On par with the Erikson books Feb. 2 2011
Wow. Esslemont has improved his writing skills and character development tremendously. Stonewielder is right up there with the Malazan books written by Erikson. In terms of chracter development, the character of Kyle is much more real in this novel than he was in Return of the Crimson Guard. The elements of gray amongst the protagonists is well handled. It would also seem that Stonewielder will have some influence on events elsewhere. Just saying. All in all, this is Esslemont's best novel to date, and I am now looking forward to the next one.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Stoneweilder May 29 2011
By Lambert
This book was awesome. Very good story line and character development.
These side storyline books are great, and give views of some of the other races in the Malazan empire story.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Very Good Followup March 17 2011
By Brian Ashe TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I am really happy that Esslemont is continuing to write in the Malazan Empire world.

This novel is not quite up to the Return of the Crimson Guard, but it's close. Very good read, and better than some of Erikson's work. No big criticism here: this is overall a triumph of world building and of universe building. My previous reviews reflect this. Love this series overall.

The action here is exemplary. The characters are good. The continuity is better than the recent Erikson novels, although I have not yet read The Crippled God (next on my agenda). I had expected a novel on the internal events of the Malazan Empire, and was surprised that this work was well at the periphery, but the campaign has a significant effect on the overall theme of the two series, the effect of the Crippled God on the world of the Malazan Empire. Some of the characters, as in any fantasy series, are a bit generic, but others, including the Toblakai spiritual leader, are very well drawn and different from the usual hero. The same can be said for some of the defenders of the Stormwall.

Good action, interesting characters, a very good treatment of magic and almost gods, and integration into an excellent fantasy series. Recommended.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Better writing but less action Feb. 26 2011
By David
I know this is Esslemont's best Malazan writing work to date. I fell his craft has stepped up a notch, but somehow the action in the book left me unsatisfied. I'm a bit shocked as his previous books are to the point and action packed. It's a good addition to the Malazan series, a book where you get answers.
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