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Fin
05-05-2012, 05:22 PM
Tomorrow I will be finishing reading Gardens of the Moon and I have to say i thoroughly enjoyed it. I definitely recommend it to anyone who hasn't read it and is looking for something to pass the time until AMOL.

DahLliA
05-05-2012, 06:50 PM
don't be scared off by Deadhouse Gates. it only gets better :D

Crispin's Crispian
05-06-2012, 08:34 PM
don't be scared off by Deadhouse Gates. it only gets better :D

Indeed, and then Memories of Ice knocks you on your arse. In a good way.

Frenzy
05-06-2012, 09:01 PM
i gave up after... uh... the one with the Chain of Dogs. Most characters were too mopey & moody for my tastes.

Davian93
05-06-2012, 09:05 PM
I own the first 3 books of that series and have tried to read Gardens at least 3 times but have always lost interest.

Dragon Thief
05-06-2012, 11:43 PM
While I never really liked SE's writing (FAR too much of it was a waste of ink), I really liked his story. Certain characters (Kruppe, Karsa, Kalam, Rallick) were awesome, and I loved most of history/worldbuilding enough to push through it.

I finished the series just a few weeks ago, having bought the trade paperbacks for the last two books.

And was utterly disappointed. It read like a D&D story, holes all over the place, completely disjointed from all of the previous story he had build up. It basically did for the rest of the story what Matrix 3 did to the first matrix, it just ruined it for me. :mad:

Zombie Sammael
05-31-2012, 08:25 AM
I finished Gardens of the Moon last night. While I enjoyed it and have bought the second one, I am feeling a little impatient with it. The initial stubborn refusal to give the reader anything to hang on to is very off-putting, and I hope the apparent pretentiousness of the series drops off and the author returns to just telling a good story. There are moments of horrifically clunky prose, as well.

Terez
05-31-2012, 09:07 AM
The prose improves drastically as the books go on. Every book is in a new place, usually with new people, but there are enough connections to what you already know in the second book that it's not quite the same.

Mort
05-31-2012, 09:23 AM
Havn't yet started reading any of the books. I don't really like the notion of having to read through a dense first book just for the promise that it'll "get better later". I want it to be fantastic right off the bat thankyouverymuch.

And my patience with long friggin books is running thin over all. Less immense fantasy sagas, thanks. :)

Ieyasu
06-02-2012, 02:39 PM
I read it, thought it was garbage.

I can understand a slow story picking up later as it goes on, but having to wade 3 books deep before that promised point? waste of ink and binding!

Whizbang
10-03-2012, 02:43 PM
I read it, thought it was garbage.

I can understand a slow story picking up later as it goes on, but having to wade 3 books deep before that promised point? waste of ink and binding!

...He says on a Wheel of Time forum...

That said, I tried to read this a while back and couldn't get into it. I got about 1/3 the way through the book and put it down. I suppose I should return to it one of these days.

Ieyasu
10-04-2012, 12:51 AM
...He says on a Wheel of Time forum...

That said, I tried to read this a while back and couldn't get into it. I got about 1/3 the way through the book and put it down. I suppose I should return to it one of these days.

...

The Eye of the World makes sense from start to finish... The Garden of the Moon does not make sense till about the 3rd book... I have no idea how these two relate or why saying so on a WoT forum should factor into it... Malazan Empire is just bad. Period. It starts in the middle of the story, throws you in with people you dont care about in situations you have no idea why are occurring and doesnt start to become cognizant until the 3rd or 4th book in the series... you know what WoT is about from book 1...its like walking into the middle of a conversation. Usually you can pick up the flow of it after listening a few mins, or in books cases, a few chapters. It shouldnt take 3 books to get there...

Whizbang
10-04-2012, 08:31 AM
I was merely commenting on the biggest complaint about WoT is that, at many points, things seem to drag and it takes a whole book to cover a single day.

Like I said, I only read some of the Gardens of the Moon. I think it lends weight to your argument that the pacing of the book is too slow by the fact that you stuck with WoT but complained about this series.

Ieyasu
10-04-2012, 04:05 PM
I was merely commenting on the biggest complaint about WoT is that, at many points, things seem to drag and it takes a whole book to cover a single day.

Like I said, I only read some of the Gardens of the Moon. I think it lends weight to your argument that the pacing of the book is too slow by the fact that you stuck with WoT but complained about this series.

WoT makes sense from book 1, a reader understands what the entire series is about from the beginning. I have never complained about the pacing in WoT, nor am I now. My biggest complaint is the wait time between book releases since I have had to wait for all of them. Been a long ride...

Malazan empire series takes 3 or 4 books to get there. The first book, Garden of the moon, tosses you into the middle of a story that does not come close cognizance for a good 3 books. That is part of what makes it so bad in my opinion, which I am sure is why you set it aside. Sadly to say, it doesnt get better from there imo

rand
10-05-2012, 10:22 PM
I think a lot of the problems stem from people having expectations that the series will follow a normal narrative structure. Or that Erikson is trying to write like that, but doing a bad job at it. He isn't trying to write normally, though. Book 2 is not a continuation of book 1, so if you go into the series thinking the story will all be chronological like that, you probably won't like it. And I'm not trying to say you'd be wrong to expect the series to follow a normal structure, but that might be why you seem to think it takes multiple books to get to the gist of the story. It does, basically, but that's because the series starts out with three separate stories on three different continents that at first have nothing to do with each other.

I don't know...like I said, I think it's all about how you approach it. I knew a lot of what to expect before I started reading it, so I wasn't surprised/angered/etc at the weird structure of the series.

DahLliA
10-06-2012, 02:21 PM
I think a lot of the problems stem from people having expectations that the series will follow a normal narrative structure. Or that Erikson is trying to write like that, but doing a bad job at it. He isn't trying to write normally, though. Book 2 is not a continuation of book 1, so if you go into the series thinking the story will all be chronological like that, you probably won't like it. And I'm not trying to say you'd be wrong to expect the series to follow a normal structure, but that might be why you seem to think it takes multiple books to get to the gist of the story. It does, basically, but that's because the series starts out with three separate stories on three different continents that at first have nothing to do with each other.

I don't know...like I said, I think it's all about how you approach it. I knew a lot of what to expect before I started reading it, so I wasn't surprised/angered/etc at the weird structure of the series.

this pretty much.

Durvasha
10-10-2012, 04:05 PM
I think a lot of the problems stem from people having expectations that the series will follow a normal narrative structure. Or that Erikson is trying to write like that, but doing a bad job at it. He isn't trying to write normally, though. Book 2 is not a continuation of book 1, so if you go into the series thinking the story will all be chronological like that, you probably won't like it. And I'm not trying to say you'd be wrong to expect the series to follow a normal structure, but that might be why you seem to think it takes multiple books to get to the gist of the story. It does, basically, but that's because the series starts out with three separate stories on three different continents that at first have nothing to do with each other.

I don't know...like I said, I think it's all about how you approach it. I knew a lot of what to expect before I started reading it, so I wasn't surprised/angered/etc at the weird structure of the series.

lol, at last too they have nothing to do with each other. They are just ... 'adventures' ... the heroes go through. Some get killed, some survive. Some commit ... uh ... premeditated suicide after every single character in the book sang their praises. Till the end, miracles happen that have no basis in anything that went before.

Timeline? what is that? it obviously has no use in a good fantasy from great author. I do not know why but I like to have at least have it explained, if as nothing but magical/miraculous. But now, here we have an author who says 'timeline is not important'.

Consistency? again huh? Who needs that. Characters behave completely differently in each book, or even within a single book.

And let's not discuss the crap that is the tenth book. I do not even know why it was called series finale. It did not end or resolve a single point of interest (by that time). Not at all. It is just a setup for the next book in the Malazan world, like the past nine books.

I do not know if I qualify as a new reader. I must have read lots and lots of crappy, and a few good fantasy. If I went into a crappy book (knowing beforehand that it was a crappy book), I will put it down after the inevitable crappy ending and think it was time well spent. But if I read a book that generated as much hype as these, (and where the author thinks that he is better than Tolkien) and delivers this kind of crap at the end, I think am justified in feeling homicidal rage.

People keep saying that he is writing in a different way to other authors. But seems to me that he is writing pretty much exactly to many other authors. Except those authors write for video games or write books in video game worlds.

Dom
01-21-2013, 07:07 AM
I own the first 3 books of that series and have tried to read Gardens at least 3 times but have always lost interest.

The book is a lot more fun to reread when you're far long in the series and you understand what's actually going on.

I found GotM annoying and boring the first time around. It took me four attempts to get through it.

I ended up loving the series, though.

yks 6nnetu hing
01-21-2013, 07:28 AM
The book is a lot more fun to reread when you're far long in the series and you understand what's actually going on.

I found GotM annoying and boring the first time around. It took me four attempts to get through it.

I ended up loving the series, though.

and that is the fundamental problem with that series. one has to slog through thousands of pages of uninteresting uninspired writing in order to get to some elusive point when things "pick up" while at the same time being told that if one doesn't enjoy it, one is inferior and stupid.

yeah, I have zero interest in being continuously insulted while reading boring crap.

Sarevok
01-22-2013, 02:06 AM
and that is the fundamental problem with that series. one has to slog through thousands of pages of uninteresting uninspired writing in order to get to some elusive point when things "pick up" while at the same time being told that if one doesn't enjoy it, one is inferior and stupid.

I don't think anyone here ever called you that...

yks 6nnetu hing
01-22-2013, 02:40 AM
I don't think anyone here ever called you that...

no, I made the bright decision of reading Erikssons foreword. He basically says (except in more words than that. because he's a brilliant writer) that he's awesome and yes, the books might be difficult to get into *for some*, but that's because he's awesome and *some people* just aren't smart enough to appreciate his excellence. Because they're stupid.

I make a habit of reading forewords, you get a feeling of the author, their sense of what's serious and what's funny; to me, the foreword and afterword really enhance the experience of the book. The Stephen King foreword to the Dark Tower is great, ALL of Bernard Cornwell's forewords and afterwords and historical notes are simply mindblowingly awesome, the Guy Gavriel Kay forewords are thoughtful and give that extra bit of insight... On the other hand Orson Scott Card's forewords are... eh... for Ender's Game it's ok and even kind of cool, but for the rest it gets progressively more bizarre and uncomfortable. Rather like the books.

Demon
01-22-2013, 06:04 PM
I have a question about this series. The first few books dont tie into each other much right?

If so, when do they start doing that?

rand
01-22-2013, 10:47 PM
There are basically three different story arcs in the first half of the series:

1-Gardens of the Moon = first arc
2-Deadhouse Gates = second arc
3-Memories of Ice = first arc
4-House of Chains = second arc
5-Midnight Tides = third arc

So 1 and 3 tie in with each other, and 2 and 4, etc.

Book six brings most of it together. And after that it's all essentially on big story except book eight, which goes back to Genebackis.



My GotM doesn't have a foreword. I guess I tend to ignore those (or, at least, not base my opinion on the whole book on them). GRRM does something similar in a couple afterwards, ie "This one was a bitch, I sure hope you appreciate all my hard work, etc." I don't really like GRRM as a person, but I love aSoIaF, so...kinda the same thing with Erikson and Malazan (except I don't know a whole lot about Erikson as a person--maybe that's a good thing?).

Demon
01-22-2013, 11:04 PM
Ah ok. Thanks. I like the characters for the most part so far, so i was just wondering when id see them again.

ChubbyAiel
03-09-2013, 06:44 PM
I'm glad this thread exists because I was about to create something similar asking people what they think about this book. I'm about 100 pages from the end of Gardens of the Moon and it's been a while since I've found a book such a chore to get through.

My problems with it are:

I don't care about any of the characters. I don't really know why I should care if Tattersail, Whiskeyjack, Kalam or Paran should live or die. All of them just spend the book running around saying, "Dammit, Sergeant" or "Dammit, Captain" or "Dammit Corporal". They do a lot of stuff, while spouting dialogue straight out of a bad Hollywood movie about the US Marines, but they don't seem to think or feel too much.

The magic system is incomprehensible, not because it's meant to be mysterious (like in A Song Of Ice And Fire, where such mysteriousness works brilliantly) but because Erikson just keeps throwing phrasing at you like Omtose Phellack Warren and Thyr Warren. I mean, what the fuck are they when they're at home?

Erikson tells us in the foreword he's written this book so we "hit the ground running or [we're] toast". I, personally, am toast here because Erikson spends a whole book describing a lot of action without having built a world first. He says, again in that foreword, that "these are not lazy books", but they are. He means that the reader cannot be lazy; I mean that the writer was lazy in not presenting a story that is understandable and engaging within the bounds and definition of the world that the writer creates while writing that first book. He falls foul of writing a book with lots of events that are highly dependent on the magical powers of his protaganists and their (sometimes divine) enemies without defining those powers. He should have either taken the time to determine and define those powers (Jordan) or made it more about the human struggle and made the magic less of a big deal (GRR Martin).

Lastly, as someone above said, it reads like a Dungeons & Dragons campaign. Why would a squad of soldiers employ a former assassin and still think of him as an assassin? Is he not a former assassin? Obviously not in Erikson's mind, because Kalam was probably rolled up on a few d6 some years back as an assassin, and so that is his single defining feature in the author's mind. I can only compare it to someone who was once a soldier and now drives a taxi to make ends meet. Is he a soldier or a taxi driver? "Dammit, Corporal, how much is that fare?"

I won't be going near the second book with a shitty stick unless things pick up hugely in the last 100 pages. I read Catch 22 and, while I found it funny in places, I struggled with it until I finished it and then I thought it was great. I can't see Gardens of the Moon redeeming itself in that way. I fully expect to be as disappointed as when I finished the steaming pile of dog shit that is The Black Prism by Brent Weeks.

Demon
03-09-2013, 10:55 PM
First two are definitely the hardest to get through. 2nd was better than the first, but not by a huge margin. Im over halfway through the 5th book, Midnight Tides, now, and its pretty great.

yks 6nnetu hing
03-11-2013, 03:33 AM
First two are definitely the hardest to get through. 2nd was better than the first, but not by a huge margin. Im over halfway through the 5th book, Midnight Tides, now, and its pretty great.

I very much disagree. the third book was torture to read as well. The only reason I did read it was that I had optimistically bought it already and DAMMIT I wasn't going to waste the money. Also, if it takes (depending on opinion) 2 or 3 or 4 books, each 600 to 800 pages long to "get into" a story... then either the story isn't worth it or the writer sucks. Having given up after book 3, I think the writer sucks.

Davian93
03-11-2013, 07:43 AM
First two are definitely the hardest to get through. 2nd was better than the first, but not by a huge margin. Im over halfway through the 5th book, Midnight Tides, now, and its pretty great.

Yeah, I'm never reading these books. I bought the first 3 because a bunch of people raved about them and after putting down the 1st one a good 3 times over the past 5 years, I'm content to think that they will sit on my book shelf undisturbed for eternity.

Figbiscuit
03-14-2013, 09:43 AM
I'm glad this thread exists because I was about to create something similar asking people what they think about this book. I'm about 100 pages from the end of Gardens of the Moon and it's been a while since I've found a book such a chore to get through.

My problems with it are:

I don't care about any of the characters. I don't really know why I should care if Tattersail, Whiskeyjack, Kalam or Paran should live or die. All of them just spend the book running around saying, "Dammit, Sergeant" or "Dammit, Captain" or "Dammit Corporal". They do a lot of stuff, while spouting dialogue straight out of a bad Hollywood movie about the US Marines, but they don't seem to think or feel too much.

The magic system is incomprehensible, not because it's meant to be mysterious (like in A Song Of Ice And Fire, where such mysteriousness works brilliantly) but because Erikson just keeps throwing phrasing at you like Omtose Phellack Warren and Thyr Warren. I mean, what the fuck are they when they're at home?

Erikson tells us in the foreword he's written this book so we "hit the ground running or [we're] toast". I, personally, am toast here because Erikson spends a whole book describing a lot of action without having built a world first. He says, again in that foreword, that "these are not lazy books", but they are. He means that the reader cannot be lazy; I mean that the writer was lazy in not presenting a story that is understandable and engaging within the bounds and definition of the world that the writer creates while writing that first book. He falls foul of writing a book with lots of events that are highly dependent on the magical powers of his protaganists and their (sometimes divine) enemies without defining those powers. He should have either taken the time to determine and define those powers (Jordan) or made it more about the human struggle and made the magic less of a big deal (GRR Martin).

Lastly, as someone above said, it reads like a Dungeons & Dragons campaign. Why would a squad of soldiers employ a former assassin and still think of him as an assassin? Is he not a former assassin? Obviously not in Erikson's mind, because Kalam was probably rolled up on a few d6 some years back as an assassin, and so that is his single defining feature in the author's mind. I can only compare it to someone who was once a soldier and now drives a taxi to make ends meet. Is he a soldier or a taxi driver? "Dammit, Corporal, how much is that fare?"

I won't be going near the second book with a shitty stick unless things pick up hugely in the last 100 pages. I read Catch 22 and, while I found it funny in places, I struggled with it until I finished it and then I thought it was great. I can't see Gardens of the Moon redeeming itself in that way. I fully expect to be as disappointed as when I finished the steaming pile of dog shit that is The Black Prism by Brent Weeks.

Repped. You made me snort with laughter and you basically said everything I think but am not eloquent enough to write.

And you're right about Catch 22, you have to get to the end to realise why it's brilliant, but it is. And I guess I won't be adding The Black Prism to my wish list...