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The Summer Palace: Volume Three of the Annals of the Chosen [Hardcover]

Lawrence Watt-Evans


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Book Description

June 10 2008 Annals of the Chosen (Book 3)
All of the world is kept in a delicate balance under the supervision of the Wizard Lord. It is his duty to govern lightly and protect his domain…but if he should stray from the way of the just then it is up to the Chosen to intercede. The Chosen are the Leader, the Seer, the Swordsman, the Beauty, the Thief, the Scholar, the Archer, and the Speaker, magically infused mortal individuals who for the term of their service have only one function--to remove an errant Wizard Lord. 
 
But the new Wizard Lord has now changed the playing field by neutralizing all magic in his domain (both his own and that of the Chosen) and has successfully killed and/or blocked his adversaries and their challenges to his omnipotence. Sword (now on the run) must work alone to restore order to their fair land and unravel the mystery of the Ninth Talisman--which might be the salvation or downfall of all that is good in their well ordered land.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Tor Books; First Edition edition (June 10 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0765310287
  • ISBN-13: 978-0765310286
  • Product Dimensions: 23.6 x 16.3 x 3.3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 522 g
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,081,989 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

The final segment of the Annals of the Chosen trilogy (after 2007's The Ninth Talisman) successfully mixes intrigue and adventure with ruminations on the nature of power and heroes. The Council of Immortals made the Chosen responsible for removing the ruling Wizard Lord if he should ever stray from just governance of Barokan, but the current Wizard Lord, Artil im Salthir, has killed or run off most of the Chosen, leaving Sword, the Chosen Swordsman, alone to plot his revenge. After a lonely winter hiding out in the Wizard Lord's Summer Palace, investigating the big flightless birds called ara and their natural ability to inhibit magic, Sword prepares to strike, with help from the local spirits and an unlikely alliance with one of the Wizard Lord's own henchmen. Readers who appreciate thoughtfully drawn characters and settings will enjoy this story of justice and revenge in an ever-evolving world. (June)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Review

Praise for The Ninth Talisman:
 
“If you like swords, sorcery, and interplay between characters, this is the book for you. The rush towards confrontation was exhilarating. I look forward to the third installment.”--SFRevu.com

“Fans of Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman's Dragonlance saga will find this series much to their taste.”--Publishers Weekly

“The deliberately archetypal Chosen are not without individual character, thanks to Watt-Evans' dry wit, and the Wizard Lord isn't a standard magical potentate. But he is treading a classic path for his ilk by introducing technology that may conflict with magic--how deeply is the Chosen's current and probably future concern in the gifted, prolific Watt-Evans' promising new series.”--Booklist

“Veteran SF and fantasy author Watt-Evans (The Obsidian Chronicles) displays his command of the fantasy genre in this fast-paced, fluidly told sequel to The Wizard Lord.”--Library Journal


Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 3.6 out of 5 stars  14 reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good Series, Tepid Conclusion July 27 2008
By Kevin M. Wagner - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
I really liked this series. I thought the first two volumes were very good. I thought this one was a bit weaker. It wasn't terrible or unreadable, but it was fairly slow in pacing and more contemplative than action packed. The bulk of the book has Sword basically hiding out until he can make an attempt on the Wizard Lord. The actual conclusion is fairly swift and has a neat little twist. While I was glad to read the final novel and to get closure on the storyline, I doubt I would read it again. Too little happens and too few of the characters that we got to know are in the book for much time at all. With that said, I still think Watt-Evans is a strong author and I would highly recommend his work especially the Ethshar series and the Obsidian Chronicles.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Should have been 2 books instead of 3 Dec 22 2008
By Ian Duckles - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Having finished the series, I must say I was generally disappointed by it. The first book was quite strong and got me very interested in the world Watt-Evans had created and the characters he populated it with. However, the second and third books have really dimmed my interest. The main problem as I see it is that there really isn't enough material in the last two books to justify publishing them separately. Each of them is filled with needless repetitions to the point where the last two volumes of this series should have been edited down and released as one three hundred page novel. Yes, I do think about half of the last two books amounted to unnecessary and extraneous material. As an example, there were at least two places on this book, in addition to the prologue, in which the entire series up to that point was summarized.
In addition, the characters are remarkably slow and dim-witted. I figured out every single plot twist and problematic plan pages in advance of the characters in the story. Essentially reading this book amounted to me wading through pages of repetitious ruminations waiting for the characters to figure out what should have been obvious from page one. All in all, much as I like the work of Watt-Evans, I cannot recommend the series. Book one is a good read; a self-contained and interesting story. I would recommend you read that and skip the rest. If you are particularly bored you might try to get the books from the library, but frankly I am not sure they are worth even that limited time commitment.
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars The Worst Watt-Evans I've Ever Read Sept. 26 2008
By elvindeath - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Okay ... I'm a big Lawrence Watt-Evans fan, so this one is hard for me. Ever since I picked up The Misenchanted Sword while summering at my grandparent's cottage many years ago, I've enjoyed his work. I find his writing style simple and enjoyable, and his characters affable and generally believable (seriously - read my other reviews). Until this book, that is.

The Annals of the Chosen is a rather tepid series. The concept is solid - I liked the idea of the checks and balances of The Chosen versus The Wizard Lord, and the way ler played such a role in world. But where this book (and series) fell apart, for me, is with the characters. There simply isn't a likeable or engaging one in the entire trilogy.

I'm not sure if Harriet dear actually read this book - one can never tell from her reviews, since they basically seem to be a review of the dust jacket - but "Sword" as about as simpering, inane and idiotic protagonist as I've ever read. The entire book seemed like one paragraph being written over and over again. "I need to kill the Wizard Lord, but I'm not sure why, and he's pretty good for Barokan, but he killed two of the Chosen, but ..." Seriously - by the the middle of the book I was hoping one of the uplanders ran him through with a spear and the book just ended.

By the end of the book, I wasn't sure why the Wizard Lord deserved to die, I didn't care whether he - or anyone else - did, and I didn't believe any of the characters motivations for doing anything.

The book had a rushed and hurried feeling; like it was being rushed out the door to meet a deadline (or collect a paycheck). Normally, a "sub par" book by a favorite author still garners a good review from me, but not this one. I loved The Obsidian Chronicles, but this book - and this series in general - earns a big pass from me.

If you need a break from reading complex, engaging and truly epic fantasy (like Steven Erikson's Malazan series, or George RR Martins Song of Ice and Fire), there are many better options than this series. I'd look to anything by Ray Feist, or the new series by newcomer Joe Abercrombie. All are better paced, with deeper characters and more flow.

Sorry Lawrence ... hope you come back strong.
5.0 out of 5 stars The Summer Palace (Annals of the Chosen, Vol. 3) Feb. 10 2014
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
As I stated in a previous review, I read so many books so quickly I don't always keep the story lines separate. However, almost of these are of the same style of story and since I purchase the next installments I obviously enjoy them all.
5.0 out of 5 stars I liked it July 26 2012
By nickkkk t - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
its was kinda slow at first but i still enjoyed the ending very much even though it took some time to get used to the new theme in the book.

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