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The Malazan Book Of The Fallen

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Appears on 5 lists in total.
Appears on 3 master lists.
Appears on 2 voting lists.
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The Malazan Empire simmers with discontent, bled dry by interminable warfare, bitter infighting and bloody confrontations with ancient and implacable sorcerers. Even the imperial legions, long inured to the bloodshed, yearn for some respite. Yet Empress Laseen's rule remains absolute, enforced by...

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  • Author: Steven Erikson
  • Publish Date: 2009-05-12
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    The Malazan Book Of The Fallen Ranks On The Following Lists:


    Best Fantasy Series(Ranked 7 out of 253)

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    Best Military Fantasy Books(Ranked 1 out of 31)

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    The Best Modern Sword and Sorcery Books(Ranked 3 out of 33)

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    My Top 10 Favorite Fantasy Books(Ranked 9 out of 10)

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    Reviews/Comments On The Malazan Book Of The Fallen


    10 out of 80 people found this review helpful
    RE:
    By: Sr4
    2012-11-01 06:33:05

    Very poorly written, a huge cast of characters weakly introduced, confusing to read.

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    RE: RE:
    By: Anonymous
    2015-01-21 08:57:50

    Poorly written? You can say many things about this series (mostly all good), but poorly written is definietly not one of them. The scale might be overwhelming for some, but this fairly deserves the top spot.

    RE: RE: RE:
    By: Anonymous
    2015-10-31 05:34:41

    not a chance

    21 out of 23 people found this review helpful
    RE: Best Fantasy Series
    By: Anonymous
    2014-10-19 08:35:31

    One of the best book series I've ever read.

    Thought that ASOIAF has a large scope? Or WOT? Think again. The scope in either is dwarfed by the one in MBotF. Unlike any other fantasy series I've ever read the events take place all over the whole world, not just one corner of a continent. This of course makes the books slightly hard to follow on occasion as you might have three or even four books when you don't see a certain continent with it's characters. In the end, however, Erickson ties all the threads up (Well, most of them anyway) in an epic finale. The threads that are left haning are partly solved in Ian Cameron Esslemont's "novels of the Malazan Empire" series, and what is still left over will be solved in Erickson's upcoming "Toblakai Trilogy". Currently Erickson is writing the Kharkanas Trilogy, which takes place about 300 000 years before the main series, but is even then relevant to the main story. That's is an other amazing thing in the series. The world huge and it's history is enormous.

    There are quite a few characters in the series (875, most of whom are quite relevant to the story, unlike in, for example Wheel of Time, where perhaps 10% of it's over 2800 characters has any real meaning in the plot.) so if you're bad with names it might be a challenge.

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    RE: RE: Best Fantasy Series
    By: Anonymous
    2016-03-01 11:09:08

    Couldn't agree more! As a die hard fantasy fan, I used to read Lord of the Rings series aprox every year..but MBotFallen has since supplanted that tradition...just finished. esslemont's malazan empires series(very good) and am going to start the 10 novel series again, but in CHRONOLOGICAL order this time...what I personally enjoy is how quasi-militaristic the series...the outstanding magic (warrens/holds) system, ascendency, and plain sword and shield front line violence make this my go to...and I've perhaps an anti-social amount of fantasy books...MUST READ!!!!

    RE: RE: RE: Best Fantasy Series
    By: Anonymous
    2016-04-05 05:27:33

    Admire the dedication but you're missing out on some great EPIC fantasy re-reading. Unless you have more time than me :) The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings got me hooked. From there I went to David Eddings and The Belgariad. If you like classic fantasy give that series a try.

    4 out of 38 people found this review helpful
    RE:
    By: Anonymous
    2015-03-06 04:55:14

    "The scale might be overwhelming for some"? That sounds kind of arrogant boss. Especially so since this series IS poorly written though not in prose. The characterization is dreadful and the plot is predictable and boring. I couldn't make it past the 2nd book.

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    RE: RE:
    By: Anonymous
    2015-04-26 05:07:58

    "the plot is predictable and boring. I couldn't make it past the 2nd book."You read less than 20% of the story, which is not nearly enough to even determine what the series is actually about. I'm not sure what you were predicting, but I guarantee you, that's not how it ended.

    RE: RE: RE:
    By: Anonymous
    2016-03-26 11:30:20

    Writing 101. If they don't capture your interest in the first 10 pages it's not well written. Since when is one whole book not enough to judge. What a bunch of crap. It's crap sure, but just wait until you get to the 10th book! Whatever.

    RE: RE:
    By: Anonymous
    2015-11-21 09:01:37

    Yeah I think you have no idea what you're talking about.

    1 out of 19 people found this review helpful
    RE:
    By: Anonymous
    2015-04-08 03:35:12

    I couldnt make it past page 3 hahha.

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    2 out of 4 people found this review helpful
    RE:
    By: Anonymous
    2015-05-17 07:34:35

    ''the plot is predictable....couldn't make it past the 2nd book '?!!
    methinks he didnt make pat page200 of the first.

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    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful
    RE:
    By: Anonymous
    2015-06-12 03:20:16

    If you like easy reads, then this is not the book for you. It took me some time to get into the first few % of the book but was able to finish it real quick and now i have to finish all of them. if you find it overwhelming then i think you should stick to easier reads and more predictable books. No offense meant!

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    RE: RE:
    By: Anonymous
    2016-08-20 05:52:22

    I am not a smart person, and that series was hard as piss to read, I was lost from the first 4 pages, I was like wtf is going on here. Totally confused, but it seemed like it was a good story.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful
    RE:
    By: Anonymous
    2015-06-23 12:17:20

    Not sure if I should try this series or not sounds good. I loved the WOT is it better?

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    RE: RE:
    By: Anonymous
    2015-07-22 09:03:44

    It is different. WOT is much easier to read, but if you will be able to comprehend all that is happening in Malazan, you won't have regrets for sure.

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful
    RE:
    By: Anonymous
    2015-06-25 06:11:00

    This is by far my favorite fantasy series out there. WoT was good, I'm over ASoIaF, and brandon sandersons Stormlight Archive is shaping up to be a good series. But they dont come close to this series.
    My favorite thing about this series is how hilarious it is. With characters like Kruppe, Iskaral Pust, and Tehol Beddict. Plus all the other dark humor in here. I couldnt get enough of it.

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    RE: undefined
    By: Anonymous
    2015-06-25 06:11:47

    your gay

    RE: RE: undefined
    By: Anonymous
    2015-06-25 06:12:24

    You're. If your going to insult me use proper grammar.

    RE: RE: undefined
    By: Anonymous
    2015-08-16 09:04:01

    If your? Or if you're hahaha, someone had to correct the correction.

    RE: RE: undefined
    By: Anonymous
    2016-01-24 04:13:03

    Spell much....*you're

    RE: RE: undefined
    By: Anonymous
    2016-06-25 06:59:18

    You're a jackass. Keep your bigoted comments to yourself.

    RE: RE:
    By: Anonymous
    2015-07-01 04:58:44

    What about his gay?

    RE: RE: RE:
    By: Anonymous
    2016-08-20 05:49:47

    He is a closeted gay, u know, like you're brother, lol.

    RE: RE:
    By: Anonymous
    2015-07-30 01:26:58

    Well like the same books, so I can't disagree, but I think Sanderson was able to wrap up the WoT series much batter than Erikson was able to able to wrap up MBotF. Series was great, but the ending did not do justice to all that great characters and story line he created...and the ending sets the tone for me. I'd also argue that stormlight is shaping up to be awesome, Sanderson is one of the best writers out there. I think Erikson should have just had him wrap it up in 2-3 books rather than the rushed one he produced. Again, it's not that I don't like his work, I just felt he did not do his own work justice.

    RE: RE: RE:
    By: Anonymous
    2015-09-08 08:54:41

    I disagree that Malazan needs any wrapping, it's too huge for it and it is part of why I love it so much. This story practically breathes history, and history is never wrapped up. Things are always happening, there are always consequences to everything, including the consequences.The story deals with plot threads (sorry for the lack of a better word, it's not entirely correct) that are tens and hundreds of thousands of years old, to have it all neatly wrapped up in the same storyline, in my opinion would do them great injustice an oversimplify this huge and complex world that Erickson has build (with his friend whose name I've trouble recalling at the moment).

    0 out of 0 people found this review helpful
    RE:
    By: Anonymous
    2015-06-29 03:14:27

    After reading a lot of different fantasy series, I'm really find the first book hard to get into. I feel like I'm reading a history book. Things are happening that I'm not sure if I should care about or not and there isn't a main story or any characters to really get behind or care about. I will at least read the first two, but it just feels like work. I'm hoping something changes my mind.

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    RE: RE:
    By: Anonymous
    2015-09-11 06:19:48

    After finishing book 1, I was pretty lost. But, every review said that would happen. Stuck it out, and thank God I did. There isn't a series in existence that compares to the scope and complexity of Malazan. I couldn't get enough. It's tough to follow, and I don't think it's insulting to say that it isn't going to be for everyone. I grew so attached to some of the characters, that when it ended, I felt sort of sad and sick that there weren't anymore books. I'm definitely going to read esslemonts stuff, along with all of the other novels related to Malazan. It's just too good to not!

    RE: RE:
    By: Anonymous
    2015-12-31 04:57:11

    Took a lot of getting into, but was very worthwhile. I felt like giving up after the first book, but read on another site that you should read the second and the reread the first.Which I did and really shed a light on everything and there was no looking back after that. The only problem is that after reading the series most other works are so poor in comparison, although Stormlight Archive is shaping up very nicely.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful
    RE:
    By: Anonymous
    2015-07-01 08:22:41

    I will start by saying this is the best series i have ever read! I will advise you however the beginning of the first does read like a history book but if you get through it the scope of the story is amazing. and anyone who thinks the story is predictable from the first two books is a fool. simple as that. you who say the characters are poorly introduced they are some of the most genuine characters you're ever likely to find in any story and if you think its poorly written the truth is probably closer to you not having the mental capacity to understand what is being said.

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    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful
    RE:
    By: Anonymous
    2015-07-02 07:43:25

    Just finished the last book. And I can honestly say, that this is one of the best fantasy series ever written. It is not easy reading, the scope is really huge and you really must concentrate to get the catch. But when you make it to the end, the reward is more then sweet. I really dont understand, how Ericson could create such a complex masterpiece with so much memorable characters (Tehol, Kruppe, Karsa Orlong, Trull Sengar,etc.). They will miss me all.

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    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful
    RE:
    By: Anonymous
    2015-07-25 03:45:20

    A very good series, not quite as fun as GRRM but a much more awesome, complex and inventive plot. Really the very top shelf above GRRM, Tolkien, Jordan and everyone else. I will criticize the unnecessarily complex language and vocabulary - I get the beauty of the words but there isnt enough depth in many thoughts to demand or even correctly use that complex language. But the complexity is wonderful and it pretty much all comes together at the end of 9000 odd pages.

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    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful
    RE:
    By: Anonymous
    2015-07-30 01:21:41

    I read the entire series, and for the most part enjoyed it. That being said, he does jump around a lot, and while he does tie it up in the end, it felt very rushed. Main characters start dropping like flies in the end as it seems like he decided to end at a certain amount of books, but simply did not have enough time. He also never really explains why things end the way they do or does not do so in enough detail to give justice to the characters. Kara Orlong gets the shaft and his story pretty much come to and end. Sin, whose inner battle is well explained, goes down in like 3 sentences, Mappo chases Icarium for like 5 books and their ending sucks. Overall liked the series, but reminded me of Wheel of Time towards the middle/end, way too complicated. The only difference is that Erikson did not have Brandon Sanderson to come in and nicely wrap up the mess he made. Again, ok series if you like deep and complex fantasy (which I do), but the ending could have been aloooooot better. A lot of moments of greatness, but also a lot of gaps...and crappy ending. On that note, if you want complex, with better endings, Wheel of Time and Mistborn (though not really that complex) are good options.

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    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful
    RE:
    By: Anonymous
    2015-09-11 06:27:20

    Really, really,really wish this ended better. For how large a scope this series has, alot of the main characters never really got an ending. I feel like 1-2 more books to close them out would have been much more satisfying. As I flipped to the last lage, and it said "the end", I immediately felt sort of sick as I was thinking about all the story lines that never had closure. Where is Krupp? Karsa and the witch, letheras, darujhistan, so many little things that never got an ending. Amazing series, amazing writing, amazing characters, mediocretc ending.

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    RE: RE:
    By: Anonymous
    2016-01-24 04:15:19

    I would read a couple more

    RE: RE:
    By: Anonymous
    2016-03-22 07:17:08

    It's not the end. Esslemont wrote 6 novels coinciding with the events taking place in Erikson's series. He is also currently writing a prequel trilogy (the first having just recently been released) detailing the origins of the Malazan Empire. Not to mention Erikson's prequel trilogy taking place 300 000 years prior and the plans to write a sequel trilogy following Karsa Orlong. The ending in The Crippled God was a brilliant spot to hang your hat and wait for more.

    0 out of 0 people found this review helpful
    RE:
    By: Anonymous
    2015-10-03 05:34:02

    Surprised to see it at the #1 spot for EPIC fantasy but then after considering it a bit - probably well deserved! I read the whole series and it's fantastic! Lots of characters, very unique magic system - everyone is badass so there's not really an unbalance. I LOVE the Bridgeburners and enjoyed following them through this series. You will love them too!

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    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful
    RE:
    By: Anonymous
    2015-12-20 03:00:44

    Not sure how this doesn't take top spot on the list. A literary masterpiece - and not just in the fantasy genre. I highly recommend reading it alongside tor.com Malazan reread for first timers who are struggling. The commentary and discussion help shed light on the more subtle (but absolutely brilliant) links.

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    0 out of 0 people found this review helpful
    RE:
    By: Anonymous
    2016-01-02 09:51:05

    I read the entire series and thought it was fantastic. There are a lot of characters to keep straight. In fact, I had to have a website handy to look up who that person was that I was mixing up with another at first, however, it did not take away from any of the enjoyment of the book - added to it I think even. The characters are fantastically crafted by the author letting you know exactly who they were. I read ASOIAF directly before this series and I am not sure which series I liked better. ASOIAF seemed more "knightly" while The MBOTF series seemed more "fantasy" (with a very unique magic system as well). However, both have a similar feel. I have heard this series compared to The Black Company. No...no...no... The Black Company was awful compared to this series. Sure, both had a group of soldiers that were the center of the series, but The Malazan Book Of The Fallen flat out smokes that one. I think people will really enjoy it.

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    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful
    RE:
    By: A couple of cents.
    2016-03-28 05:54:41

    This series was written to a glimpse inside the empire. No start or finish. Like opening a window for ten books and then shutting it. That's out of Erikson. Albeit not a direct quote, it was something similar to that. Please keep this in mind when you read these reviews that talk about the ending or beginning negatively. It's hard to wrap your head around, but it's a unique format. If you stick it out with that in mind, you'll be grateful.

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    0 out of 0 people found this review helpful
    RE:
    By: Anonymous
    2016-05-12 09:55:36

    This was a really good story, but there were a few shortcomings. Please don't misunderstand my meaning here; I think Erickson is talented and has created an amazing world with deep characters. But ... I need to get a few things off my chest. The most frustrating aspect of the telling of this story was the strident and almost pompous railing against "inequity" and "aquisitiveness". While these are certainly problems in our society and are magnified in the Malazan world, Erikson's repetitive monologues on the subject become very tiresome and lose any efficacy they may have had. Second, his introductory "exerpts" from the works of Fisher and other Malazan authors are too long and feel like a self indulgent excuse to show off Erickson's poetry/prose. And finally, Erickson seems to choose a word that most people will not know the meaning of and then ride that word into the ground. Some examples include febrile, gelid, actinic, argent, and conflagration. The words are used far too often and, occasionally, incorrectly.

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    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful
    RE:
    By: Anonymous
    2016-06-01 04:33:58

    The top spot here is well deserved! This is my favorite epic fantasy series of all time. I loved it so much it has ruined all other series for me. The books, plots, world, and characters are massive in scope. It is not a series for the casual fantasy reader. A large vocabulary is necessary here or you may be easily lost. When I flipped to the last page, I wanted to cry. I didn't want to leave the characters. You do become so absorbed in the story and feel so close to the characters that you absolutely will miss them. To those who didn't make it past books 1-2, I feel sorry for your loss. You have no idea what you missed out on. However, the series is for advanced readers, so not everyone will be able to grasp it. For those that can, it will be the best series you've ever tackled. Highly, highly recommend these books.

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    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful
    RE:
    By: Anonymous
    2016-08-20 05:53:29

    I like pizza.

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    0 out of 0 people found this review helpful
    RE:
    By: Anonymous
    2016-08-20 07:40:31

    I really struggled with Gardens of the Moon but persevered. I re-read it after I finished the whole series and it made more sense. The series varied a lot in quality. He portrayed some amazing characters, particularly duos but it was often turgid and boring as well. Skimmed the last few books but as a fan of fantasy I think you should at least try it

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    0 out of 0 people found this review helpful
    RE:
    By: Anonymous
    2016-10-06 03:10:15

    I just finished the series and it was pretty good. Sometimes hard to follow, but by the end if you paid attention to some of the nuances early on, it all came together. There were parts that kind of fell off at the end, so there was a bit of a feeling of incompletness to all of the sub-plots, but still deserves the top spot...maybe #2 behind Wheel of Time.

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    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful
    RE:
    By: Anonymous
    2017-04-02 07:50:43

    I've read the vast majority of the series listed on this site and the Malazan Books of the Fallen stands apart from all that are listed. No series has the depth, scope of time and history Malazan has not Middle Earth or The Wheel of Time. The characterizations are superbly written and the joy of the prose comes out when characters wax philosophical about their role in the game that is being played out in the story. The amount of different races and the inter dimensional/cosmological components in the story are breath taking. Erikson deftly weaves a story that puts the onus of understanding on the reader. He's often times subtle in his descriptions so much so that if you miss a references to a creatures you end up having no clue what kind of beast he's talking about. He doesn't spoon feed you a clear systematic portrait of the mechanism at work in the world he's created, he deliberately reveals thin layers of information over the course of the story. He gives you enough to make you curious about what more will be revealed. He doesn't rely on typical story telling mechanisms. Hey that thing that character just mentioned didn't make sense lets have a quick flash back in italics to catch you up on what this means......nope doesn't happen in Malazan. This series holds firmly to the "read and find out" paradigm. For those of us who love the books the not knowing and confusion is part of the joy. You don't get to understand or see the full scope of the story until damn near the last book. Its like looking close up at a grand mosaic and only seeing a small few square inch sections at a time. You can appreciate the colors used in those areas and perhaps even enjoy the line work and other aesthetics but your left wondering how the whole painting looks from afar, well guess what you don't get to see that until the end. Until I read Malazan I was a fan of the basic adventure story, typical coming of age tales that have a central character the story revolves around. I read George RR Martin and came to appreciate a revolving cast of characters who don't always do the things you expect them to do. That idea is taken ever further with Malazan. The Characters change from book to book and the deaths are often times glossed over as many tragedies are in life. The failures, machinations, plots and sub plots are the driving force of the story. From gods to non humans, to humans, to ascendents to the undead and tyrants the self interest of all the characters are a central motivation in much of the story. If you prefer writing in the vein of Jordan, Tolkien, Sanderson (who are all great and talented writers) then you might struggle with this series. Its a wholly different style of fantasy and as such it has its detractors. It's not going to appeal to every one but to say it's not good writing or the author sucks is not only disingenuous its dishonest and absurd.

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